Real Name: Terri Marie McClure
Nicknames: No known nicknames
Location: Carson City, Nevada
Date: January 14, 1983
Details: On Friday, January 14, 1983, thirty-eight-year-old Tim McClure was married in Lake Tahoe with his sixty-two-year-old mother, Terri McClure, by his side. He had lived off-and-on with her during his twenties; they often went out to dinner together and gambled at local casinos.
On the night of Tim's wedding, he, his new wife, and their parents celebrated by gambling at the nearby casinos. At 10pm, Terri said goodbye to Tim after he walked her to her car. She was planning to return home to Reno, about an hour away. She was never seen alive again.
At 6pm the next evening, Tim and his new wife went to Terri's home to visit her; however, she was not there. After calling several friends and relatives, Tim called the police to report her missing. Three days later, on Monday, January 17, her car was found in the parking lot of the Carson City Nugget casino, about a half hour away from Lake Tahoe. She was found shot twice in the head inside and was believed to have been killed the night of Tim's wedding. Authorities found that the keys were still in the ignition, her purse was missing, but her jewelry remained on her body.
The next day, police began looking at Tim as a suspect in Terri's murder. Circumstantial evidence seemed to point to him as being responsible for her death. However, the Nevada DA declined to prosecute. He, along with many of his family and friends, insist that he is innocent and that her killer is still out there.
Suspects: From the beginning, authorities considered Tim a suspect in Terri's murder. When questioned, he told police that after saying goodbye to her at 10pm, he returned to the casino. Since his new wife was gambling with her parents, he decided to gamble alone for about two hours. He then rejoined her, and they went dancing until dawn the next morning. Authorities, however, have been unable to substantiate their whereabouts for that night. They were also unable to name any of the places that they had been to that night.
Tim also told police that two days before Terri's body was discovered, he had searched the main highway between Lake Tahoe and Reno for her purse. The authorities found it odd that he was retracing her steps, looking for an item that nobody had known was missing at the time. He, however, claimed that his sister had given him the idea to look for it.
Tim also searched the parking lots of the casinos on Terri's route, looking for her car. He looked through every lot on that route except for one: the parking lot where her body was later found. He claimed that a "gut feeling" kept him from entering it.
Authorities were also suspicious of a phone call Tim had made to cancel Terri's credit cards. He claims that he made it on Monday, January 17, which was the day that her body was found. However, the credit card company claims that he called on Friday, before she even disappeared. Authorities received the memo written by the credit company's employee; it states that on Friday, Tim told them that Terri was deceased. He, however, claims that the employee was mistaken.
Six months before she was murdered, Terri took out a $10,000 insurance policy on her life. Tim and his sister were named as co-beneficiaries. Authorities suspect that this may have been the motive for her murder. He, however, claims that he would never kill her for money.
On February 14, one month after the murder, Tim and his wife agreed to take polygraph tests. Both indicated deception. The question she failed on was "Do you know who killed Terri?" He claimed that the situation was awkward and uncomfortable, which led him to failing it.
Tim believes that Terri may have been robbed and murdered by a hitchhiker. According to him, she was known to pick up hitchhikers.
Extra Notes: This case first aired on the April 5, 1989 episode.
It is believed to be one of the only cases where a suspect has contacted the telecenter in an attempt to clear his or her name.
Results: Unresolved. In September 1992, Tim was arrested for Terri's murder. Some tips from the broadcast helped in the police investigation. However, in January 1993, the Nevada D.A. ultimately decided not to prosecute him. In April, a judge dismissed the case with prejudice because of problems with the evidence and Tim's estranged wife's refusal to testify. This ruling means that he can never again be arrested in this case.
Terri's murder remains unsolved, although Tim remains the prime suspect. Her granddaughter has commented that much of their remaining relatives believe he killed her. They also believe that his ex-wife knows what happened but is withholding information.
- Terri McClure on Unsolved.com
- Reno woman homicide victim - January 19, 1983
- Reno woman is Carson's third murder victim - January 20, 1983
- S.D. Man Arrested in Slaying of Mother - September 4, 1992
- San Diego man charged in slaying of mother - September 4, 1992
- Police: TV show leads to arrest of son in Reno mom's killing - September 4, 1992
- Man's bail revoked - October 10, 1992
- Court Hears Mother-Killing Case - November 10, 1992
- Murder hearing begins - November 10, 1992
- Man goes on trial for allegedly killing mom - November 10, 1992
- Old Carson murder - November 11, 1992
- LA man ordered to stand trial - November 16, 1992
- Son cleared of mother's fatal shooting - April 3, 1993
- Terri McClure's Obituary
- Terri McClure on Find a Grave