News from BSO

ARREST IN 2001 COCONUT CREEK MURDER

BSO Case Number: BS01-10-9823
PIO Number: 02-12-40
Date: October 21, 2001 (murder), December 22, 2002 (arrest)
Time: 1109 (murder)
Place of Occurrence: Lindstrom Air Conditioning, 6601 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, FL (murder), 6400 NW 29th Court, Sunrise, FL (arrest)

Victim(s):

  • Traci Cooper, 39, 2/10/62, 9160 Sunset Strip, Sunrise, FL

Suspect(s):

  • Alan Ruff, 41, 4/27/61, 6400 NW 29th Court, Sunrise, FL

Description of Incident:

A Sunrise man is in the Broward Sheriff's Office Main Jail today, charged with the October 21, 2001 murder of a Sunrise woman. BSO homicide detectives brought their exhaustive investigation to a close Sunday with the arrest of 41-year old Alan Ruff.

The body of 39-year old Traci Cooper was discovered in her Coconut Creek workplace last year. Responding Coconut Creek police officers were called to Lindstrom Air Conditioning where an employee discovered the woman’s body shortly after 11:00 a.m.

Friends and co-workers told detectives that Traci Cooper had recently broken off what she had described as a violent, six-year relationship with Ruff and witnesses had identified Ruff as the man they saw fleeing from the scene of the murder in a four-door, gold-colored car. Further, Ms. Cooper was so fearful of Ruff that she had obtained a restraining order against him just weeks before her murder. That restraining order outlines some of the crimes against Traci for which Ruff was a suspect. Those include several burglaries at Cooper’s home, evidence of attempted poisoning of the woman, and physical and mental abuse against her.

After the murder, BSO investigators found human hair on bloody towels in the women’s bathroom of the business. DNA samples from that hair matched Ruff’s DNA, giving investigators the evidence they needed to secure a warrant for Ruff’s arrest. Detectives determined that, after stabbing Ms. Cooper, Ruff cleaned himself off in the
bathroom of the business, leaving behind that DNA evidence.

At about 7:30 the evening of Sunday, December 22, 2002, BSO detectives arrested Ruff without incident at his home at 6400 NW 29th Court. He is being held without bond pending trial on a charge of first-degree murder.

INVESTIGATORS: Sgt. R. O’Neil, J. Berrena, CI, Homicide Coconut Creek PD
THIS REPORT BY: Hugh Graf 12/23/02 11:00 a.m.

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