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'A Fresh Perspective' Leads to Charges in 1987 Slaying

The body of Karla Jane Delcour, 22, was found tied up along a highway in Missouri
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 27, 2019 3:35 PM CST

(Newser) – Authorities announced murder charges Friday against a Texas man in the 1987 killing of a young Missouri woman who was found dead near a highway with her hands tied to a rope around her neck. Kirby R. King, 64, is charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Karla Jane Delcour, whose body was found in a wooded area near St. Clair, a town about 45 miles southwest of St. Louis, Franklin County Sheriff Steve Pelton said Friday, the AP reports. He said King, who used to live in St. Clair but was most recently living in Texas, was arrested Monday while visiting relatives near St. Clair. Online court records do not list an attorney for King, who was freed after posting $100,000 bond. He was interviewed by police in 1987 and again in the early 2000s, officials said.

Pelton said his department's cold case team reopened the case last year. "We wanted to make sure Ms. Delcour was never forgotten," he said. The team traveled to Arizona and Texas to again interview former suspects and witnesses, but Pelton declined to say what new evidence led to the charges. "Sometimes a fresh perspective combined with advances in science and technology aid in furthering an investigation when all original leads have been exhausted," Pelton said in a statement, per KMOX. The remains of Delcour, who was 22, were found in June 1987 along an Interstate 44 service road. Delcour was living in St. Clair at the time she was killed. Her father reported her missing the same day her body was found. He said he became alarmed when he didn't receive a Father’s Day card from her.

(Read more cold cases stories.)

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