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Police seek leads in Strasburg case

By Joe Beck

The Virginia State Police say the agency continues to look for leads 15 years after the stabbing death of Sylena Jo Dalton and the disappearance of her infant daughter, Allyson Dalton.

In a news release issued Friday afternoon in response to an inquiry from The Northern Virginia Daily, state police officials said the agency is far from closing the case and asked the public for help in collecting new information.

The news release named Daniel E. Pompell "as well as others" as "a part of the investigation."

Sylena Dalton's family members identified Pompell as a former boyfriend of the victim in interviews with The Northern Virginia Daily.

Sylena Dalton, 20, was found stabbed to death on July 27, 1998 in the Strasburg apartment where she had been living with her 10-week-old daughter and her mother.

Sylena Dalton's mother, Angela Stover, and the victim's grandmother, Bonnita Smith, have said they believe the state police have given up on the case.

Strasburg Police Chief Tim Sutherly said he had recently contacted the state police out of concern that the Dalton case might be "just collecting dust on someone's desk."

The state police news release states: "Allyson's father, Daniel E. Pompell, told police he went to the apartment on the morning of the murder, knocked on the door, received no answer and left the area. The state police, as a matter of policy, will not name suspects; however, Mr. Pompell has not been exonerated. Mr. Pompell, as well as others, remain a part of the investigation as police continue to collect information and confer with the commonwealth's attorney and town of Strasburg Police Department."

The news release states that state police investigators "welcome any and all calls from individuals who wish to provide additional information in the case."

Callers may remain anonymous and are asked to contact Special Agent M.L. Jones at the state police Bureau of Criminal Investigation in the Culpeper office at 829-7400 or 1-888-300-0156.

A photo of Allyson Dalton at the time of her disappearance and composite photo of what she may have looked like at age 12 can be viewed by searching on her name at http://www.missingkids.com/Search.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com

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