Cops Interviewed Him in 1974, but Let Him Go

Glen McCurley of Fort Worth killed a teen decades ago. The fear is he had more victims
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 20, 2022 10:50 AM CDT
Cops Interviewed Him in 1974, but Let Him Go
Glen McCurley, right, waits to be escorted out of the courtroom at the Tim Curry Criminal Justice Center, Tuesday, Aug. 24 2021, in Fort Worth, Texas.   (Amanda McCoy/Star-Telegram via AP)

Texas Monthly digs into an infamous 1974 cold case out of Fort Worth, one that has a wrenching detail: Police interviewed the killer of the 17-year-old Carla Walker soon after she was murdered but quickly dismissed him as a suspect. Carla was abducted from her boyfriend's car in a parking lot after a high school dance then assaulted, fatally strangled, and left in a culvert. The killer left one piece of evidence in the parking lot—a magazine clip from a .22 Ruger handgun. It was a distinctive weapon, and investigators talked to everyone in the area who had purchased one. That included 31-year-old truck driver Glen McCurley, who told police his gun had been stolen weeks earlier. He agreed to a polygraph test, passed it, and police moved on.

The story by Skip Hollandsworth runs through how the case went cold—and how women kept being murdered in similar fashion in the area through the 1970s and 1980s. A few years ago, a number of factors combined to crack the Carla Walker case—the diligence of her brother, Jim, and cold-case detectives; podcasts that put renewed attention on the case; and sophisticated DNA testing on the still-saved evidence from Carla's clothes. That testing turned up the name McCurley and caused a "deep breath" moment for the detective who matched it to the old case file. McCurley, then 77 and a respected family man, was arrested in 2020 and pleaded guilty. Investigators even found the Ruger he said had been stolen so long ago, hidden away in his house. McCurley, who is dying of cancer, insists he killed no one else, but investigators are skeptical. (Read the full story.)

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