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brutal slayings

Associated Press
FRI 03/11/1988 HOUSTON CHRONICLE, Section 1, Page 12, 3 STAR Edition

DALLAS - Two hitchhikers were arrested in Oklahoma and taken to Arkansas for questioning in connection
with four brutal murders, and another man was detained in Texas, authorities said Thursday.

Two men, one of them 17 and the other 20, were taken into custody late Wednesday on U.S. 69 in
Muskogee, Okla., and agreed to be taken to Hope, Ark., for questioning by Hempstead County, Ark.,
officials in the death of Kenneth Olden, 34.

Hempstead County Sheriff Don Worthy said the hitchhikers matched the descriptions of two men wanted
for questioning in the slaying of Olden and the Texas murders of a woman in Cooke County, near Gainesville,
and two men in Collin County, near Farmersville. All four murders occurred Monday.

Collin County authorities went to Arkansas Thursday to question the men. But Cooke County officials stayed
home after picking up a possible suspect of their own.

"We have not arrested anyone. We have a person we have detained and are questioning," Linda Call, a
spokeswoman for the Cooke County Sheriff's Department, said Thursday night.

"As far as I know, they have not confirmed that the two in Arkansas are going to be the ones we're looking
for. That's what we're waiting for at this time," she said. "It's kind of wait and see. We'll be comparing
prints and that sort of thing."

The man in Cooke County custody was walking Thursday with another man on a county road, and both men
bolted and ran when someone approached to ask if he could help them, Call said.
"That's what started this. The other man is still not in custody, but the one we have matches the description
of the blond suspect they were looking for," she said.

Collin County Sheriff's Sgt. Anthony Hancock said two officers from his North Texas county went to
Arkansas to question the men in custody there.

The two suspects were hitchhiking near the edge of Muskogee when they were taken into custody, said a
Muskogee police officer who would not give his name.

The first of the four victims in the two-state crime spree was found in her Gainesville mobile home Monday,
along with a bloody hatchet, said Cooke County Sheriff John Aston, adding that two guns were taken from
her home.

Her 1-year-old son was at home but unharmed, Aston said.

Another victim, an elderly Collin County man, was shot in the back of the head, and his son was shot in the
face. The fourth victim, Olden, was shot three times and then dumped by the side of an Arkansas road after
he gave two men a ride, authorities said.
Hancock said the Arkansas authorities' descriptions of the two men in custody appear to be a close match
to earlier reports.

"I think right now the description is the main thing," he said. "I haven't been able to find out much other
than that, but they believe there is a good possibility it's them."

Authorities said it appeared two men killed Deana Andrews Woodard, 23, in her mobile home near
Gainesville as she cared for her son Monday morning. Woodard was hit in the head, apparently with an ax,
and her throat was slit as she struggled with her attackers, officials said.

Aston said a bloody hatchet found near Woodard's body was being analyzed for fingerprints.

As of Thursday, officials still had not located her blue 1981 Thunderbird or a .22-caliber rifle and 20-gauge
shotgun missing from her home.

Shortly after noon Monday, about 50 miles southwest, near the Collin County town of Farmersville, Cecil
Floyd Morrison, 85, was shot in the back of the head and his son, Cecil Leonard Morrison, 62, was shot in the
face. They also were hit repeatedly in the head.
Late Monday night, about 150 miles farther west, near Saratoga, Ark., Olden, a railroad worker, was shot
three times and his body dumped on the roadside. Olden's girlfriend said he had offered a ride to two men
who came to him for assistance.

Olden's body was found Tuesday morning beside a road near Saratoga. His 1983 tan Mustang was found
later Tuesday in a pond near Marietta, Okla., about 40 miles north of where the first murder occurred. The
Morrisons' pickup truck was found in a lake in Arkansas.