“This is a 25-year-old mystery,” Maggots could solve a decades-long Oklahoma cold case murder


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office is taking a look at different avenues in hopes of solving a 25-year-old unsolved murder. 

“The more of these rocks that we are turning over, the more answers we are getting,” said Aaron Brilbeck with the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office. “And it’s pointing us in a different direction.” 

Edward Trotter was found shot and killed on a property in Jones on June 16, 1996. 

His body was covered in maggots and discovered abandoned on the property.

The sheriff’s office believes Trotter was shot with antique ammunition.

It’s a case sheriff’s investigators are determined to solve.

Now, they say it very well could be with a frozen find.

“This is a 25-year-old mystery, and it could be solved because of maggots,” said Brilbeck. “I’m certain that the name of the person that killed Mr. Trotter is written in those files.”

Trotter’s belongings were removed from an evidence deep freezer and inside one of the items – dozens of dead maggots.

Brilbeck told KFOR the frozen larvae could provide a potential timeline of the crime.

“We can measure those maggots and if they are in a certain stage that tells how long that body has been in a certain location for how many days,” said Extension Entomologist Justin Talley with Oklahoma State University. “We can see if there’s DNA from humans. We can see exposure to other animals. We can also detect drugs in the maggots.”

Sheriff’s investigators told KFOR that timeline is an essential factor.

Brilbeck told KFOR it’s crucial in proving witnesses’ claims that they saw Trotter alive 72 hours before his body was found.

“If we got several witnesses who are telling us hey we saw him on this day, but the maggots tell us otherwise–it could be they are lying, mistaken, but either way, it gives us a reason to go back and talk to those people again,” said Brilbeck. “These maggots could very well hold the key to this 25-year-old homicide.”

If you have any information involving the Trotter case, give the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office a call.

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