The Cowtown Killer

Glen McCurley was living a quiet life in Fort Worth when new DNA evidence linked him to a notorious crime: the killing of a teenager named Carla Walker, more than 45 years prior. Police suspect it wasn’t his first murder — or his last. The story of how he got caught takes some surprising turns, including an amateur true crime podcast and a woman’s trip to CrimeCon:

The show, called Gone Cold Podcast—Texas True Crime, had a small audience at first, but one person who did listen to it was DiAnne Kuykendall, a retired mail clerk for the U.S. Postal Service in Fort Worth. “I had gone to high school with Carla,” she told me. “We didn’t know each other at all, but she had always smiled at me in the hallway. She made me feel good—the popular girl talking to someone like me. Listening to the podcast, I thought, ‘I wish there was some way I could pay her back.’ ”

Kuykendall decided to fly to Nashville to attend CrimeCon, an annual three-day true-crime convention that most recently attracted some five thousand fans (the majority of them women) who flock to see celebrity authors, podcasters, and broadcasters. She brought along eighty copies of a pamphlet she’d written about Carla’s case, which was based mostly on Strange’s podcast. She paced the hallways of the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center, passing out the pamphlets to the likes of Dateline’s Keith Morrison, Fox News’ Nancy Grace, and Paul Holes, a retired homicide investigator who’d helped solve the Golden State Killer case and who hosted a true crime show on NBC’s Oxygen network. “I’m sure everyone thought I was one of those crazy true-crime ladies,” Kuykendall told me.

Holes was intrigued by Carla’s case, and in April 2019, his producers called Wagner and Bennett. Oxygen was willing to pay $18,000 to cover the cost of DNA testing on Carla’s clothes. The detectives were thrilled.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Jul 18, 2022
Length: 36 minutes (9,164 words)

The Notorious Mrs. Mossler

“In ‘the trial of the century,’ a Houston socialite was accused of plotting her husband’s murder—and of having an affair with her nephew. But Candace Mossler was only getting started.”

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Nov 17, 2021
Length: 48 minutes (12,033 words)

The Serial Killer of Laredo

“Last September, law enforcement officers were confounded by a murderer targeting prostitutes along the border. As the investigation intensified, they discovered that the killer had been hiding in plain sight.”

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Sep 18, 2019
Length: 26 minutes (6,543 words)

Faith, Friendship, and Tragedy at Santa Fe High

Sabika Sheikh came from Karachi to experience the best of being an American high school student and instead got our very worst, leaving two crushed families behind — one Pakistani, one Texan.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: May 1, 2019
Length: 39 minutes (9,949 words)

Schlitterbahn’s Tragic Slide

Can a man be convicted of second-degree murder for building a water slide? Where’s the line between thrill-seeking and willful negligence? After indictments following the death of 10-year old Caleb Schwab on the “Verrückt” slide at Schlitterbahn water park, we’re going to find out.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Jul 20, 2018
Length: 29 minutes (7,450 words)

The Doting Father Who Robbed Armored Cars

Federal authorities struggled to identify the team of violent criminals who were robbing armored cars in Houston, Texas. When they finally got their break, the news shocked some local people, and not everyone believes it.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Apr 1, 2018
Length: 29 minutes (7,475 words)

The Prisoner

In 1991, twelve-year-old Edwin Debrow killed a cab driver. Twenty-five years later, he remains in prison, continuing to be denied parole since 1999. Is the public better served by putting youngsters in adult prisons and keeping them off the streets for years and years?

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Dec 27, 2016
Length: 30 minutes (7,598 words)

A Shooting on Spring Grove Avenue

A detective accuses a woman of murder; the woman says the detective is the one who should be in prison.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Oct 31, 2014
Length: 37 minutes (9,455 words)

All’s Farrah In Love

Whom did Farrah Fawcett really love? A court battle over an expensive Warhol turns on matters of the heart:

It was a Monday morning in mid-December at the Los Angeles County Superior Court, the day of closing arguments in the matter of the Board of Regents of the University of Texas System v. Ryan O’Neal, and the show was just minutes from getting under way. Outside the courtroom, the players milled about. O’Neal was strolling down the courthouse hallway in a navy blazer, an open-collared light-blue shirt, and dark pants. Seventy-two years old and still impossibly youthful, with only a touch of graying hair, he wore gold-rimmed sunglasses and held a plastic water bottle, which he wiggled before him as if he were going for a birdie putt on the eighteenth green at Riviera. “God, I’m nervous,” he said.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Feb 3, 2014
Length: 15 minutes (3,902 words)

The Lost Boys

In December 1970 two teenagers disappeared from the Heights neighborhood, in Houston. Then another and another and another. As the number of missing kids grew, no one realized that the most prolific serial killer the country had ever seen—along with his teenage accomplices—was living comfortably among them. Or that the mystery of what happened to so many of his victims would haunt the city to this day.

Source: Texas Monthly
Published: Mar 24, 2011
Length: 45 minutes (11,384 words)