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Cynthia Wood was found strangled to death in Florida in 1984. Her accused killer has just been arrested in California.

A man wanted in the 1984 killing of a Florida woman has been arrested in California nearly four decades later, authorities said Thursday.

Detectives from the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office were traveling to San Diego County to interview Donald Michael Santini, who was being held in jail following his arrest Wednesday, the sheriff's office said in a statement.

Cynthia Ruth Wood  Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

Santini had been on the run since June 1984, when Florida authorities obtained an arrest warrant linking him to the strangling death of 33-year-old Cynthia Ruth Wood of Bradenton, located south of Tampa.

Wood's body was found in a drainage ditch about five days after she went missing on June 6 of that year, according to the sheriff's office.

The arrest warrant said a medical examiner determined she had been strangled and Santini's fingerprints were found on her body, WFTS-TV reported. Authorities previously said Santini may have been living in Texas using an unknown identity.

A tip from the Florida/Caribbean Regional Fugitive Task Force led U.S. Marshals to Campo, in San Diego County, where they arrested Santini, KGTV reported.

"We are aware of this arrest and have sent detectives to interview Santini, while we await extradition," the sheriff's office said in a statement. "This arrest allows us to reexamine evidence collected in 1984 using the technology of today, as the case is now considered open once again."

Online jail records said Santini, 65, was arrested as a fugitive. He was scheduled to appear in court in San Diego County on Friday. Records had no listing of an attorney for Santini who could speak on his behalf.

Donald Santini Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office
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