MWC Disappearance Suspect Charged With Murder, Kidnapping

Tuesday, October 27th 2015, 5:38 pm
By: LeighAnne Manwarren

Charges have been filed against a man arrested in connection with the 1997 disappearance of Kirsten Hatfield. 

Anthony Palma, 56, was charged with one count of murder in the first degree and one count of kidnapping in connection with the Midwest City disappearance. Kirsten's body has not been found.

Midwest City police arrested Palma on Oct. 12 after DNA found on Kirsten's panties and window sill matched Palma's DNA. The match was one in 293 sextillion, according to the probable cause affidavit. 

10/22/2015 Related Story: Search Concluded At Anthony Palma's MWC Property

"The evidence shows that Kirsten may have been targeted by Palma for sexual assault. This is supported by his blood being on her partially ripped panties and on window sill of her bedroom (the crime scene)," Midwest City detective Darrell Miller wrote in the probable cause affidavit. 

Miller said there have been no verified sightings or contact from Kirsten since May 1997 and it is likely she was killed shortly after her abduction. 

"It is likely that Palma has been motivated to stay in the same home to conceal evidence of the crime and/or the location of Kirsten's body," according to court documents.

During a police interview in October, Palma denied knowing the Hatfields and denied being in Kirsten's house or backyard.