Authorities release crucial piece of evidence in 34-year-old unsolved murder

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MOORE, Okla. - The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation released a crucial piece of evidence in a 34-year-old unsolved homicide case Monday.

Tracey Neilson, Courtesy: OSBI

Tracey Neilson, Courtesy: OSBI

On January 5, 1981, Tracey Neilson's husband found her dead inside of their apartment at the Jamestown Square Apartments in Moore.  It was her 21st birthday.

Investigators say Tracey had been stabbed numerous times.

"She had so much to live for, and so much more life to live, she was robbed of so much," Cindy Young, Tracy's sister, said.

Young and the rest of their family have held out hope that police would find Tracey’s killer.

During the next 34 years, investigators say they followed more than 1,500 leads, but with no luck.

In the past few years, the OSBI says they began a new cold case initiative which helped them determine new evidence existed in this case.

Officials believe one piece of evidence could give this case new life.

Investigators have been stuck on this particular piece of evidence for decades.

It’s a ticket book found inside Tracey’s home.

The last ticket in the book is for work on her cable before noon the morning she was killed.

Agents want to identify the three letters in the bottom left corner, where the box is for the employee’s name or initials who did the work.

OSBI hasn’t been able to figure out which cable company went out to Tracey’s home. There’s no contact information in the book.

“We may never know who took her life that day, and we have to wonder everyday, ‘why?’” Young said.

Investigators did get a fingerprint at the scene, but back in the 80s, matching fingerprints wasn’t easy.

That’s why Tracey’s husband and family helped OSBI convince lawmakers to pay for new fingerprint technology.

It has helped solve hundreds of crimes in our state, but unfortunately, no match has been found in Tracey’s case.

“It's time for us to finally be set free from the agony of not knowing,” Young says. “I just ask that if anybody knows anything or if you did it, please come forward.”

OSBI, Moore police, and Tracey’s family are offering an $11,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction of the person who killed Tracey.

Anyone with information on the case should call the OSBI hotline 1(800) 522-8017.


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