Two McAlester Cold Case Homicide Victims Identified Nearly 30 Years After Death

After figuring out who a Texas couple was that was found shot to death in rural southeastern Oklahoma 28 years ago, state investigators are asking the public for help in solving a cold case.

On April 9, 1995, the bodies of a man and a woman who had been dead for a long time were found under a tree by a guardrail near Crowder Point in Pittsburg County. The bodies were in bad shape. The man had been shot once in the chest and the woman had been shot twice. Investigators think that travelers on nearby U.S. Highway 69 killed and dumped the two people.

After the bodies were found, a nationwide alert was sent out, and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation used clay to make forensic reconstructions of the two people’s faces. The McAlester News-Capital said that even though there were many tips from Oklahoma, Kansas, and Texas, no one was positively identified.

The Bodies Were Buried in November 1995

The bodies were buried in November 1995 in Dorsey Cemetery, which is on the north side of Lake McAlester. They were not found until 2019 when a cold case unit set up by Pittsburg County Sheriff Chris Morris dug up the two bodies.

More: The headless body of the person who had been stabbed was found 27 years ago. The OSBI now has a name.

Morris asked the OSBI for help with the case, and in 2021, forensic scientists from the OSBI sent a sample of DNA from one of the bodies to a Virginia company called Parabon NanoLabs. By September 2022, investigators thought they probably knew who the two were.

The tweet below confirms the news:

OSBI agents also went to Ohio and Texas to talk to people who might be related to the victims and get their DNA. Authorities now think that the two victims were Brian Burr, 23, and his wife Rachel Burr, 21, both of Texas. This is based on a lot of interviews and more DNA testing from multiple agencies.

A lot of states and agencies were involved in the investigation. The Oklahoma Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Parabon NanoLabs, the Texas Rangers, and the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification all helped the OSBI and Pittsburg County police.

In 1995, investigators thought the man who turned out to be Brian Burr was 5-foot-7 inches tall, had a medium build, and had short blond or light brown hair. He also had tattoos on both arms. The woman who turned out to be Rachel Burr was said to be 5 feet 6 inches tall, thin, and have long, light brown or blond hair.

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