Town wonders whodunnit in supposedly solved cold case

Published 10:26 am Wednesday, October 19, 2016

By Jennifer Brooks

Minneapolis Star Tribune

MAGNOLIA — Someone in the tiny town of Magnolia could be a killer. But nobody seems to know who.

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The community is waiting to learn which of its 200 residents is suspected in a 25-year-old homicide on the other side of the country. Cold case investigators in Pennsylvania announced Tuesday that they had arrested a 61-year-old Magnolia resident they believe gunned down an elderly woman in her own kitchen.

But they won’t say who — not until Friday.

The unidentified suspect has been charged with criminal homicide in the death of Myrtle McGill, 76, who was killed in her home in Indiana County, Penn., sometime in early December 1991.

According to the local paper, the Indiana Gazette, McGill was hit by two .22-caliber bullets fired through her kitchen window. Her body was not discovered for days.

Someone had smashed the sliding glass door to get into the home, the paper reported, but the only thing taken from McGill’s home was her old Ford sedan. Days later, it was recovered at a Greyhound bus station near Pittsburgh. McGill’s body was found several days after that, on Dec. 13.

Meanwhile, nobody in Minnesota — not the Rock County sheriff, not the mayor of Magnolia — knows who the suspect could be in a tiny town in the southwestern corner of the state.

“I have no idea,” said Magnolia Mayor Dennis Madison.

Rock County Sheriff Evan Verbrugge heard about the arrest when he fielded a call from a reporter from Pennsylvania. Curious, he reached out to Pennsylvania law enforcement, hoping for more information.

“I’m waiting to hear back,” he said. The last homicide in Rock County was in 2001, and that case was solved.

Indiana County District Attorney Patrick Dougherty said state police will not reveal the suspect’s name or other details of the cold case investigation until a news conference Friday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
—Distributed by Tribune Content Agency.