Dallas officials charge man in 1984 cold case murder, nearly 38 years to the day young woman found dead

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Dallas District Attorney (DA) John Creuzot’s office on Friday arrested and charged a man for the 1984 killing of a 21-year-old woman, Mary Jane Thompson.

Edward Morgan, 60, now faces one count of capital murder in Thompson’s killing after 38 years following an investigation by the DA’s office in collaboration with the Dallas Police Department (DPD) and the FBI.

His arrest came almost 38 years to the day Thompson’s body was discovered behind a warehouse on Feb. 13, 1984, after a DNA test linked him to the crime.

Edward Morgan. (Dallas County District Attorney’s office)

“This case is yet another example of the incredible collaborative effort between the Dallas Police Department, the FBI, and the District Attorney’s [Sexual Assault Kit Initiative] Cold Case team. Working together, we continue to solve the most difficult cold cases that Dallas has ever seen,” Dallas County Assistant District Attorney and SAKI Chief Leighton D’Antoni said in a Friday statement.

He continued: “I look forward to working with all our local law enforcement agencies to utilize the advancements in forensic testing techniques to identify, arrest, and prosecute the most dangerous predators hiding among us. We never, ever forget about these cases, our victims, and their families.” 

Thompson was last seen on Feb. 11, 1984, when she took a bus to the Trinity Medical Clinic on then-Industrial Boulevard, but it was closed, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Authorities discovered her body two days later behind a building on the 2300 block of Irving Boulevard in the Stemmons Corridor. Investigators had determined at the time that Thompson had been sexually assaulted and strangled with her own leg warmers, the Morning News reported. 

2300 block of Irving Blvd in Dallas. (Google Maps)

DPD reopened the cold case in 2009 and completed DNA testing with swabs from Thompson’s autopsy. Investigators identified an unknown male’s DNA profile that did not match a specific suspect at the time, and the case went cold again until 2018. The FBI Dallas Violent Crimes Task Force joined DPD’s investigation, according to the DA’s office.

A forensic genetic genealogy (FGG) analysis finally linked Morgan to the murder earlier this week.

D’Antoni said FBI Dallas and DPD Detective Noe Camacho “spent countless hours over multiple years working diligently on what, at times, seemed like an impossible case to solve.”

“It is not every day we are able to solve a 38-year-old cold case capital murder. It takes a singular dedication and authentic commitment to justice to see it through. The people of Dallas are very lucky to have them helping to protect our community,” D’Antoni said. 

Morgan is being held on $500,000 bond.

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