FAIRFIELD (AP) — A Fairfield man charged with the killing of his girlfriend 14 years after she went missing remains in custody after pleading not guilty to murder.

Lonnie James Kerley entered his not guilty plea Wednesday during an appearance in Solano County Superior Court.

He’s accused of killing Danna Lori Dever, who was first reported missing in August 1996, almost a month after farmworkers found a woman’s body in a shallow ditch.

The body was so badly decomposed that it remained unidentified for 11 years until detectives matched the fingerprints to Dever’s state Department of Motor Vehicles record.

Prosecutors said undisclosed new information led to Kerley’s arrest in October.

The 50-year-old Kerley is being held without bail in Solano County Jail.

(© 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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