James P. Eaton
James P. Eaton was arrested and charged with the 1997 murder of 14-year-old Amber Creek. (CREDIT: AP)

Amber Creek was a 14-year-old ward of the state of Illinois when her remains were found in a remote area of Wisconsin in 1997.

Thanks to new technology from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), a suspect has been apprehended in Creek’s murder more than 17 years later.

James P. Eaton, 36, has been accused of the rape and murder of Creek after the FBI’s Next Generation Identification system helped open up the cold case.

According to the Chicago Tribune:

With apparent successes such as the arrest of Eaton, authorities are urging local agencies to take another run at unresolved cases. Eaton’s prints, in the database because of an earlier minor infraction, were found to match those taken from a bag around Amber’s head, police said.

The NGI contract was awarded to Lockheed Martin Transportation and Security Solutions after a full and open competition, according to the FBI’s website. “The NGI system will offer state-of-the-art biometric identification services and provide a flexible framework of core capabilities that will serve as a platform for multimodal functionality.”

The FBI in encouraging law enforcement agencies to send out any and all cold cases for review.

“If (police) have anything that is unsolved, take the time to look at it, send it out,” Meghan Jones, a technical manager at the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, told the Chicago Tribune. “A lot of good has come out of it.”

Jones’ office has reviewed 288 cases since October.

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Amber Creek was a 14-year-old ward of the state of Illinois when her remains…