Suspected murder of Gwendolyn Moore by husband, Marshall Moore, investigated on Detective Diaries

Family pic of Gwendolyn Moore
Gwendolyn Moore was a mother of four when she was brutally strangled to death. Pic credit: Family pic

Detective Diaries is investigating the 1970 murder of Gwendolyn Moore, who the cops believe was strangled to death by her husband, Marshall Moore, near their home in Hogansville, Georgia.

In August 1970, the body of 30-year-old Gwendolyn Moore was pulled out of a well after a child spotted her remains. The well was just across the road from where she had lived with her husband, Marshall, and their four children.

Gwendolyn had married when she was just 15, and according to friends and family, she then endured years of physical and mental abuse from her twisted husband.

The authorities knew Marshall was abusive to Gwendolyn and their four children, and he even admitted to hitting his wife shortly before her murder. However, the cops were unable to pin the crime on him. There were hints that Moore may have had powerful friends in the area, which led to the crime being swept under the carpet.

Police Chief Buddy Bryant of the nearby town of Hogansville was frustrated by the case and felt that the killer had easily escaped justice. Still, there was little he could do as the murder occurred just outside his jurisdiction.

Clay Bryant reopened the Gwendolyn Moore murder case

Years later, Buddy’s son, Clay Bryant, followed his father’s footsteps into the position of the police chief of Hogansville. Clay had been just 15 years old when Gwendolyn was murdered and had been with his father when her body was recovered. The case had always stayed with him, and luckily he now had a chance to solve it.

Bryant was contacted by a distant relative of Gwendolyn’s who wanted to find out what had happened to the great aunt that she had never known.

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Bryant managed to get himself assigned to the reopened case. He reviewed the evidence and listened to the family’s stories of prolonged abuse from Marshall. He learned that Gwendolyn had wanted to run away but that her husband had threatened to kill their children. He had Gwendolyn’s body exhumed, and the pathological report confirmed she’d been strangled.

Gwendolyn’s son, Allen Moore, said that the last time he’d seen his mother, she had been hiding from Marshall under a crawl space under a neighbor’s house. At the time, she had swollen eyes and was suffering in pain.

In June 2003, 33 years after the murder, Bryant arrested Marshall Moore and charged him with the killing. He was set to go on trial when he died from an illness. He was 67.

More from Investigation Discovery

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Detective Diaries airs at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.

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