EUREKA — The Eureka man accused of killing a teenage girl more than 30 years ago will stand trial in Washington state next year.
Robert Washburn, 60, was arrested in May and charged with first-degree murder and aggravating factors of sexual motivation and deliberate cruelty in the death of 13-year-old Jennifer Bastian.
In August 1986, Bastian disappeared while riding her bike in a Tacoma park. She was found dead in a wooded area weeks later. She had been sexually assaulted and strangled.
Authorities in Tacoma have said Washburn was approached in March 2017 to provide a voluntary sample of his DNA, which was then sent to a private lab. After police were notified of a DNA match, Washburn was arrested at his apartment in the Woodridge Apartment Complex.
Washburn, who was living in the Tacoma area at the time, is eligible for life in prison if convicted as charged.
The trial date is scheduled to begin Feb. 12, 2019.