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Published: Friday, 9/18/2009

Former Toledoan found guilty of killing BGSU student 22 years ago


BOWLING GREEN — A former Toledo man pleaded no contest and was found guilty Friday of stabbing to death a Bowling Green State University student 22 years ago.

Michael Dixon, 52, was then sentenced to life in prison by Wood County Common Pleas Judge Robert Pollex. He was also ordered to spend the anniversary of the crime every year in solitary confinement.

Dixon had faced the death penalty if convicted of aggravated murder as charged in the indictment filed against him last year for the Jan. 6, 1987 rape and slaying of Karen Sue Hirschman, 21.

Ms. Hirschman was found stabbed to death in her off-campus apartment, and no one was charged with the crime until a cold-case task force re-examined the case and was able to submit DNA evidence from the crime scene to a lab for testing.

Wood County Prosecutor Paul Dobson said the DNA matched that of Dixon who has been in prison for the past two decades, serving 84 years to life for an unrelated 1987 murder in Columbus and other crimes committed in Franklin County around the same time period.

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