Suspect leads investigators to victim’s remains

By Brian Knox | Published Saturday, December 7, 2013

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A murder suspect captured in Wise County led investigators to the body of his ex-wife Wednesday.


Garland Paul Allen

Garland Paul Allen, 49, who had most recently been living in Hillsboro, told Wise County investigators late Tuesday that his ex-wife, Tracy Lynn Allen, died during a fight between the two, according to Wise County Sheriff David Walker. Tracy Allen had been missing from Altus, Okla., since May of 2001.

“He didn’t say he killed her,” Walker said. “He said they fought, he pushed her and she fell and hit her head on an anvil in the yard.”

Allen did say that he then took her body, wrapped it in a piece of carpet and buried it in the woods at the Tom Steed Reservoir near Altus, Walker said.

On Wednesday morning, Allen went before Judge Melton Cude and waived extradition to Oklahoma. Walker said Allen was willing to work with Wise County authorities on locating the body.

Later that day, Allen led Texas Ranger Jim Holland and Wise County Sheriff’s Office investigators Clint Cadell and James Mayo to the area where he buried his ex-wife. Officers dug in the area and eventually found a blanket and human skeletal remains. Because of inclement weather, the excavation had to be delayed. Walker said the crime scene would be guarded by Oklahoma authorities until the excavation can take place. The bones will then be sent to a crime lab for analysis.

Once the remains were located, Allen was turned over to the Altus Police Department.

Allen was captured Monday night in a wooded area near Van Meter Crossing between Newark and Boyd where he had apparently been camping. A murder warrant for Allen had been issued last week, and Oklahoma authorities had contacted local law enforcement for help in locating Allen.

According to the arrest warrant affidavit, Allen’s mother, Betty Whitis, contacted authorities in March of 2002 saying she had not seen Tracy Allen in several months. She told police that on the night of May 8, 2001, her son had dropped off his two young children with her and said, “Tracy had left him and the children and took off with a black man and that she needed to raise the children.”

Allen then left and returned in about 45 minutes covered in mud.

The affidavit also describes allegations of abuse between the Allens. It states that according to Department of Human Services records, the couple’s 5-year-old daughter had witnessed her father with a knife and choking her mother until she could not breathe. Records show that a gun had also been used in numerous domestic disputes.

A babysitter who was watching the couple’s two children the night Tracy Allen disappeared said Allen came to her home at 3 a.m. to get his kids. The babysitter said Allen told her he and Tracy had gone into the country to talk, and they had gotten stuck. He said his ex-wife had gone home to shower because she was covered in mud. The next day the babysitter went over to Tracy’s home but found no evidence she had been there or taken a shower.

Allen will remain in Oklahoma while he awaits trial.

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