FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Two families tied together by a nearly 50-year-old murder came together outside the courtroom Monday, August 23, after an emotional second day of testimony in a cold case trial in Fort Worth.
Prosecutors played video of a 2020 police interview with Glen McCurley, where they confronted him with the fact they had evidence tying him to Carla Walker’s death in 1974.
“If you all know all that why didn’t you come get me back then or something,” he asked Detective Leah Wagner.
“Because they didn’t know,” she responded. “But we do.”
The video showed McCurley later breaking down in tears, admitting he had pulled the 17-year-old out of a car, had sex with her and then choked her when he got scared.
After court recessed for the day, members of both families spoke in the hallway outside the court, acknowledging the weight of the evidence that had been heard.
That evidence was the main focus early Monday, with an expert from the Serological Research Institute explaining how they had developed DNA profiles from Carla Walker’s clothing.
Investigators had previously tried to developed DNA as recently as 2007 but were unable to get a usable result.
Othram Labs out of the Woodlands explained how they further developed a DNA sequence that could be compared to genealogy data.
John Fondon said he worked through the night, eventually finding the DNA they had matched what appeared to be cousins of the person they were looking for, with the family name of McCurley.
Othram Labs CEO David Mittelman called police early on the morning of July 4, to deliver the lead to investigators in Fort Worth.
“And, that was a very emotional moment,” Detective James Bennet testified in court. “Because I felt like I was hearing something detectives had wanted to hear for the last 46 years.”
The trial is scheduled to continue Tuesday morning.