Police Arrest Man In Connection With 1971 Cold Case Murder In Bedford

Photo: Courtesy of the Middlesex County District Attorney's Office

BEDFORD, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — More than 50 years after a woman's murder, Bedford Police said on Tuesday that they have made an arrest connected to the case.

Officials said that 54-year-old Natalie Scheublin was murdered in her home on June 10, 1971.

A Middlesex Grand Jury indicted 76-year-old Arthur Louis Massei of Salem on Tuesday, as police said he was charged with allegedly tying up Scheublin and stabbing her multiple times and then striking her in the head, killing her. Police said Massei was arrested at his residence and was scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday in Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn.

In 2019, the Cold Case Unit of the Middlesex District Attorney's Office said they refocused on the case and found a woman who admitted she had been involved with Massei to defraud banks in the 1990s. That informant, officials said, also allegedly told police that Massei usually carried a knife on him and that he had bragged about having killed someone with a knife.

“More than half a century ago, Natalie Scheublin, a wife and mother, was violently murdered in her own home,” said Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan. “Today, we were able to tell her son and daughter that we were finally able to take the first step in holding the alleged perpetrator accountable for her death."

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According to police, on the evening of the murder in 1971, Scheublin's husband found her body in the basement of their home in Bedford. At the time, her body was face down on the floor, her ankles bound, and a makeshift gag was tied around her neck, officials said. An autopsy showed that Scheublin had been stabbed with a knife multiple times and had been struck with an unidentified blunt object, police said.

The only property stolen the night of the murder was the victim's blue and white 1969 Chevrolet Impala, which was found at a hospital less than a mile away from the Scheublins' home, officials said. The car appeared to have been wiped to erase fingerprints left behind, but police said they were able to get several prints. In 1999, fingerprint examiners from the Massachusetts State Police said they used new technology to identify Massei's left thumbprint, but the defendant denied any claim that he was near the scene of the crime.

Officials said that Massei had allegedly testified he had been solicited by an organized crime associate to murder Scheublin and make it look like a break-in. Massei claimed that he had refused the solicitation, police said.

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