Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Carlton Gary: The Columbus, Georgia Stocking Strangler

DNA Break

Cold case investigators have reportedly connected Carlton Gary to the unsolved June 27, 1975, murder of a 40-year-old woman in Syracuse, New York. According to an article published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, that woman was schoolteacher Marion Fisher. The article reported that Fisher, had been walking home from a bar after a fight with her husband, who became the chief suspect in the case. However, tests showed that the husband's DNA did not match evidence from the crime scene.

Carlton Gary
Carlton Gary

The article continued, reporting that New York investigators traveled to the Georgia prison where Gary is held to interview him about the Fisher case. They questioned him for about two hours but would not disclose what Gary said in the interview. Syracuse police Lt. Ron Rockwood said that no charges have been filed against Gary in the Fisher case and that the Onondaga County district attorney's office has not yet decided whether or not they will be. However, he added that the new evidence has brought a sense of closure to Fisher's relatives. "We're pleased to be able to bring an end of it to the Fisher family," he said. "They've waited for it for 32 years."

Janet Cofer
Janet Cofer

Carlton Gary's attorneys are still appealing his convictions in the Columbus Stocking Stranglings, for which he sits on death row. "We've got several grounds," says Gary lawyer John R. Martin, "but the primary ones right now are the failure of the state to provide us with expert assistance regarding semen evidence found at one of the crime scenes, the [Martha] Thurmond crime scene.

Martha Thurmond
Martha Thurmond

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