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  1. #1

    PA - Myrtle McGill, 76, murdered, Indiana, 7 Dec 1991 *Arrest*

    In my hometown of Indiana, Pennsylvania (hometown of Jimmy Stewart), there was a murder in December of 1991 that was never solved; there are very few hints of it on the Internet, and I thought I would document what little I know here.

    The body of Myrtle McGill, aged 76, was found in her home at 907 South 6th Street in Indiana, Pennsylvania. The cause of death was gunshot wound- I believe .22 caliber- three rounds fired through the kitchen window of her home. The body was not found until the 13th of December after concerned neighbors noticed mail piling up and nobody responded to phone calls.

    Her car was stolen, and recovered at a Pittsburgh bus station on the 9th of December. No fingerprints were recovered.

    In 2005, there were some additional leads uncovered; they never panned out to the best of my knowledge.

    As of 2012, the case remained unsolved.


    He also recalled the Jack Davis case -- the Indiana University of Pennsylvania student found dead in a stairwell -- and the recent book that was published on the incident; the Myrtle McGill murder on South Sixth Street, that is still unsolved, which he stated is still a significant case; and the Robert Fortunato standoff on New Year's Eve 1992 on Church Street, where the man was eventually slain by members of a SWAT team from Greensburg.

    Oddly, for being a "significant case," there is virtually nothing about the McGill murder on the Internet.

    Old newspaper article:


    Unsolved murders trouble area By RANDY WELLS Gazette Staff Writer

    It has been one year since an unknown gunman stood outside Myrtle Louise McGiU's Indiana home and fired three shots through her window. Days later her body was found near her kitchen sink by county detectives. Homicide investigators realize the deck is stacked against them. Each day that passes decreases the chances the crime will ever be solved, but they grimly continue to follow any available lead. "Statistically — according to the FBI — after 72 hours the chances of solving a homicide drop below 50 percent, and then continue to decline from there," state police Sgt. Sid Simon at the Indiana station said this week.

    As tough as the McGill murder case is, local homicide detectives are struggling with even more puzzling cases. At least five Indiana County murders — involving the violent deaths of three men and two women dating back to the early 1970s — remain unsolved. In some instances the investigating officers have retired. In one case even the scene of the crime no longer exists. But in each case a gnawing, troubling uncertainty remains for the officers and the families and friends of the victims.

    Indiana, Dec. 14,1991 — Responding to a friend's concerns that Myrtle McGill has not been answering her telephone, county detectives drive to her 907 South 6th St. home. They discover the well-known 76- year-old woman lying on her kitchen floor. She had been struck by two of three bullets fired through a kitchen window. The same day a certified letter arrived at the McGill home from a Pittsburgh towing company, indicating her 1982 Ford LTD had been towed from Penn Avenue in Pittsburgh near the Greyhound bus station. The letter said the car had been impounded Dec. 9—five days before her body was discovered.

    Sgt. Simon said recently investigators still believe McGill's murderer shot her on or about Dec. 7 or 8,1991, then fled in her car to Pittsburgh. No usable fingerprints were Found in the auto, and little inside the home was disturbed to suggest the gunman entered the house, except perhaps to take the car keys, Simon said. There is no statue of limitations in homicide investigations, and Simon said the McGill case will remain active until any possible culprit who might have committed the crime is presumed to be deceased. In other words, if McGill's killer was a teenager, the murderer conceivably could still be alive well into the middle of the 21st century. A break in the McGill murder is now most likely to come in one of two ways. Someone who knows something about the slaying may eventually be overcome by a guilty conscience and will confess, Simon said, or someone who has information on the case will be arrested for will offer police information on the McGill murder as part of a plea bargain. The other possibility, Simon said, is that the murder weapon will surface, possibly at another crime scene, and will be matched baistically to the three .22 caliber bullets recovered from McGill's body and her home.


    It is worth noting that the McGill family owned McGill Car World (used to be McGill Motors). The current owner purchased it from Lewis McGill in 1973. Mrs. McGill was well known in Indiana and, IIRC, a widow. I can't think of a reason why anyone would conceivably want her dead.

    Having spent 24 years of my life in Indiana County- a part of the country with pretenses of being the idyllic birthplace of Jimmy Stewart, replete with an "It's a wonderful life" Christmas celebration- it is little wonder that this story hasn't been given due attention: bad news doesn't sell there. I doubt the case will ever be solved, but it deserves documentation on the web.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    McWopetaz Metroplex, Illinois U. S. of A.
    Posts
    4,516
    Thanks TT. I would guess that since she was shot through a window that the weapon was most likely a .22 rifle. Has that been determined? I would think that a .22 rifle would be something a teenage boy would have. Were there any strange teenage males around town at the time or did any resident young males leave town around that time for unexplained reasons?
    This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.


    Stan Reid

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    11
    http://www.country1063fm.com/news/Ch...spx?ID=2181845

    Suspect has been arrested. No name released yet, more details to come later.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Colorado
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    6,283
    The suspect -- a 61-year-old man from Magnolia, Minnesota -- has not yet been publicly identified. Police said he is charged with homicide in the death of 76-year-old Myrtle McGill.
    http://m.wtae.com/news/homicide-susp...ounty/42151494

    Press conference is scheduled for Friday afternoon.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
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    1,640
    Thank you for this information! I hope and pray (along with all of you) that more cold cases can be solved.
    “for there is nothing heavier than compassion. Not even one's own pain weighs so heavy as the pain one feels with someone, for someone, a pain intensified by the imagination and prolonged by a hundred echoes.” ― Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    5,103

    In Anticipation of this Friday Afternoon's, 10/21 Press Conference:

    To-Be-Named, M/61 for Criminal Homicide+ :: 13 Dec 1991

    Defendant:

    To-Be Named :: Male / 61 Years Old

    Decedent:

    Myrtle Louise McGill :: Female / 76 Years Old

    Cause of Death :: Gun Shot Wound to Heart

    Manner of Death :: Homicide

    White Township, Indiana County is in South-Western, PA.

    Day 9078:

    http://www.wtae.com/news/homicide-su...ounty/42151494

    Check Back for the Lower Court Criminal Docket Sheet:

    https://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/MDJ.aspx

    Historically:

    a) Title 18 § 2501 :: Criminal Homicide :: Felony of the 1st Degree

    b) Pre-Trial Confinement :: No Bail Permitted

    § = Section


    Our Salute to All of Myrtle's Retired & Current Participants.
    Last edited by Richrd; 10-19-2016 at 08:14 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    5,103

    Press Conference Scheduled for 1:30 P.M. EDT, Today, Friday 10/21

    To-Be-Named, M/61 for Criminal Homicide+ :: 13 Dec 1991

    Defendant:

    To-Be Named :: Male / 61 Years Old

    Decedent:

    Myrtle Louise McGill :: Female / 76 Years Old

    Cause of Death :: Gun Shot Wound to Heart

    Manner of Death :: Homicide

    White Township, Indiana County is in South-Western, PA.

    Day 9080:

    https://www.indianagazette.com/news/...case,25178844/
    &
    http://www.wtae.com/news/homicide-su...ounty/42151494

    Check Back for the Lower Court Criminal Docket Sheet:

    https://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/MDJ.aspx

    Historically:

    a) Title 18 § 2501 :: Criminal Homicide :: Felony of the 1st Degree

    b) Pre-Trial Confinement :: No Bail Permitted

    § = Section


    Our Salute to All of Myrtle's Retired & Current Participants.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    5,103
    Charles Cook, M/61 for Criminal Homicide+ :: 13 Dec 1991

    Defendant:

    Charles Cook :: Male / 61 Years Old

    Decedent:

    Myrtle Louise McGill :: Female / 76 Years Old

    Cause of Death :: Gun Shot Wound to Heart

    Manner of Death :: Homicide

    White Township, Indiana County is in South-Western, PA.

    Day 9080:

    http://www.ksfy.com/content/news/Aut...397938071.html:

    Linked via DNA* on a Cigarette

    Check Back for the Lower Court Criminal Docket Sheet:

    https://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/MDJ.aspx

    Historically:

    a) Title 18 § 2501 :: Criminal Homicide :: Felony of the 1st Degree

    b) Pre-Trial Confinement :: No Bail Permitted

    § = Section

    *DNA = DeoxyriboNucleic Acid :: [dee-OCKS'-ee-RYE'-bow_NEW'-klee-ick__ASS'-idd]:

    https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/primer/basics/dna


    Our Salute to All of Myrtle's Retired & Current Participants.
    Last edited by Richrd; 10-21-2016 at 02:58 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    5,103

    Awaiting Extradition from MN to PA

    Charles Cook, B/M/61 for Criminal Homicide :: 13 Dec 1991

    Defendant:

    Charles Cook :: Black / Male / 61 Years Old

    Decedent:

    Myrtle Louise McGill :: Female / 76 Years Old

    Cause of Death :: Gun Shot Wound to Heart

    Manner of Death :: Homicide

    White Township, Indiana County is in South-Western, PA.

    Day 9080:

    http://www.ksfy.com/content/news/Aut...397938071.html:

    Includes Twenty Minute Press Conference :: Linked to Defendant via DNA* on a Cigarette

    https://www.indianagazette.com/news/...ling,50017317/

    Awaiting a PA Lower Court Criminal Docket Sheet:

    https://ujsportal.pacourts.us/DocketSheets/MDJ.aspx

    Historically:

    a) Title 18 § 2501 :: Criminal Homicide :: Felony of the 1st Degree

    b) Pre-Trial Confinement :: No Bail Permitted

    § = Section

    *DNA = DeoxyriboNucleic Acid :: [dee-OCKS'-ee-RYE'-bow_NEW'-klee-ick__ASS'-idd]:
    https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/primer/basics/dna

    CODIS = Combined DNA Index System


    Our Salute to All of Myrtle's Retired & Current Participants.
    Last edited by Richrd; 10-21-2016 at 09:44 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    1
    this is a tremendous success story and I hope everyone involved in bringing this person to justice feels good about their joint efforts.


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    21,193
    http://www.mankatofreepress.com/news...c57066f2f.html

    Extradition papers were filed Thursday for Charles Cook, 61, after DNA evidence linked him to a 25-year-old homicide...

    McGill's car was later found abandoned with a cigarette butt inside. A 2007 DNA test of the cigarette matched Cook, whose DNA was on file because he was a registered sex offender.

    Authorities were unable to locate him until he was arrested in Worthington early this year.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    21,193
    http://herald-review.com/news/local/...30f162bca.html

    Charles Cook, who has served prison terms in six states, is being held in jail in Minnesota on unrelated local charges of terrorist threats and assault. He is challenging extradition to Pennsylvania.

    A registered sexual predator in Illinois for a rape conviction in Washington state in 1999, Cook was arrested in connection with four criminal cases in Decatur between 2009 and 2014. Court records showed he was also in Decatur in 2006 and 2008...

    A hearing was scheduled Friday afternoon to determine if Cook will be extradited to Pennsylvania. His challenge alleges that he was not in Pennsylvania at the time of the murder.



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