Crackdown on Crime - Murder of Catherine Martin - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Crackdown on Crime - Murder of Catherine Martin

By Lee Peck - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The case has been open since February 18, 1982, when a woman's body was found floating in the Black Bayou. The victim identified as Catherine Martin of Iowa, died from multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma to her face.

"It's a shame because she is 20 years old, brutally murdered," said Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso. "It's important that people understand that a murder case never goes away, it's never closed."

According to Mancuso several key pieces of evidence were collected. Martin's car found abandoned near the Calcasieu/Jeff Davis parish line. Also the bloody weapons believed to be used in the murder - a tire changing hammer and flat head screw driver found along with her cosmetic bag two days later near Rabbit Island under the Interstate 210 Bridge. Investigators believe they were tossed.

There are also reports of a suspicious truck described a two tone dark red GMC or Chevy seen leaving the Black Bayou area the night before the body was discovered. And even though there were suspects at the time, Mancuso said nothing ever panned out.

"Many times, have a suspect and having the evidence we didn't have the technology back then that we have today," said Mancuso.  

Just like the status of the case, not much has changed at Black Bayou since 1982. Over the years different investigators have looked over the case, most recently Calcasieu's Cold Case Squad. Often times they revisit witnesses and the crime scenes. 

"We kind of start back from scratch and just re-look at it and see if a new set of eyes brings a different light to it," said Mancuso.  

Anyone with information is asked to call Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's lead cold case investigator Ramby Cormier at 494-4523 or Crime Stoppers at 439-2222.

Copyright 2009 KPLC. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Local fraternity helping SWLA families have a good Christmas dinner

    Local fraternity helping SWLA families have a good Christmas dinner

    Saturday, December 16 2017 9:16 PM EST2017-12-17 02:16:30 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)

    One local fraternity made sure some families in Southwest Louisiana had a fully cooked meal to enjoy for Christmas. "We have turkeys and hams, but it's enough food in the box to feed a family of eight," said  Mark Gallashaw, president of Kappa Alpha Psi's Lake Charles Alumni Chapter. Thirty-five boxes of cooked meals are getting ready to be delivered to families across Southwest Louisiana. 

    More >>

    One local fraternity made sure some families in Southwest Louisiana had a fully cooked meal to enjoy for Christmas. "We have turkeys and hams, but it's enough food in the box to feed a family of eight," said  Mark Gallashaw, president of Kappa Alpha Psi's Lake Charles Alumni Chapter. Thirty-five boxes of cooked meals are getting ready to be delivered to families across Southwest Louisiana. 

    More >>
  • LCPD: Suspect arrested after vehicle pursuit in Lake Charles

    LCPD: Suspect arrested after vehicle pursuit in Lake Charles

    Saturday, December 16 2017 5:12 PM EST2017-12-16 22:12:28 GMT
    (Source: Raycom)(Source: Raycom)

    The Lake Charles Police Department has arrested one person after a nearly 20-minute pursuit Saturday afternoon. LCPD received a call of a person shooting a firearm from a vehicle on the 1900 block of Prejean Drive in the afternoon, said LCPD Deputy Chief Mark Kraus. Police located the vehicle near Hwy 14. A 19-minute pursuit then ensued, and ended with a suspect arrested.

    More >>

    The Lake Charles Police Department has arrested one person after a nearly 20-minute pursuit Saturday afternoon. LCPD received a call of a person shooting a firearm from a vehicle on the 1900 block of Prejean Drive in the afternoon, said LCPD Deputy Chief Mark Kraus. Police located the vehicle near Hwy 14. A 19-minute pursuit then ensued, and ended with a suspect arrested.

    More >>
  • Southwest Louisiana Christmas activities

    Southwest Louisiana Christmas activities

    Saturday, December 16 2017 10:16 AM EST2017-12-16 15:16:21 GMT
    (Source: pablo)(Source: pablo)

    The following is a list of the Christmas activities going on in the area

    More >>

    The following is a list of the Christmas activities going on in the area

    More >>
Powered by Frankly