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Years Later Police Discovered That Her Childhood Friend Had Murdered Her

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By Based On a True StoryPublished about a month ago 4 min read
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In 1995, Mary Catherine Edwards was a 31-year-old teacher who taught in Beamount, a city in Texas where she also resided.

At that time, her twin sister was also a teacher at the same school. She always said the same thing to her new students laughing:

“If you see another of mine walking somewhere and she doesn’t talk to you, don’t get angry. She’s probably my sister”

Mary had a large circle of friends, a very close family and had just moved alone to her new house.

Her classmates say that she was a dedicated teacher and that she usually stayed late at school to prepare for the next day’s classes.

On January 13, 1995, Mary was seen leaving school at about 5 pm. According to reports, the woman went home, walked her dog as usual and poured herself a glass of wine before calling her boyfriend on the phone.

The next day, Saturday, Mary was no longer answering the calls, for this reason her parents went to the house to see if she was okay.

When he went up the stairs, her father encountered a terrible scene: and that is that in the bathroom was his daughter’s lifeless body. The woman had her head in the bathtub full of water, her legs on the floor and her hands tied behind her back.

Upon arriving at the place, the agents observed that the shower curtain had been torn from her mooring, as well as the bed linen in the bedroom.

The coroner established the cause of death by drowning and that her attacker had abused her. He also found several wounds that indicated that there had been a violent fight.

It’s true that they found DNA in their body and in the house but in 1995 this type of technique was not very advanced so it didn’t help much. Fortunately, they kept all the samples in case they could use them in the future.

The detectives resorted to what were then more traditional investigative methods, including the analysis of the victim’s life and those with whom she shared it.

They discovered that Mary had an impeccable past and that her days revolved mainly around the church, the gym and her second-grade students at Price Elementary.

In fact, her students remember that she loved them and that they felt comfortable and safe with her.

Despite the extensive evidence that remained at the scene and in the victim’s body, Mary Edwards’ case cooled until the year 2000 arrived.

In the middle of that year, the genetic profile of the person who attacked Mary was introduced into the DNA databases, including the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System, or CODIS. Even so, they didn’t get any matches.

Eight years later, when Jefferson County District Attorney Bob Wortham took office, Mary’s unresolved case became one of her priorities.

“The first day I was sworn in as a district attorney, I called James, the Beaumont police chief. That’s when I asked him to put some people in the Mary Edwards case because they were such terrible facts. I really wanted to find a way to solve that case.”

– Statements by Bob Wortham -

In April 2020, advances in DNA technology, including the emergence of genetic genealogy, gave researchers that opportunity. This took them to a private forensic laboratory specializing in DNA tests for police agencies.

Although the sample they had was “quite degraded,” forensic scientists were able to extract a small sample of the culprit that was still stored.

Then, open case investigators entered the suspect’s profile in a public genealogy database that has become an important tool for investigators in recent years.

In Mary’s case, several of the culprit’s second cousins and other distant relatives appeared in the database. The investigators obtained DNA samples from about 30 distant relatives, who voluntarily cooperated with the police.

Finally, the list was reduced to two men: 61-year-old Clayton Bernard Foreman and his brother. The detectives delve deeper into their background and discovered that the only one he had was Clayton.

It seems that this man in 1981, that is, a year before marrying his first wife, pleaded guilty for abusing a woman. Because of this, he was sentenced to 3 years on parole.

Upon discovering this information, the investigators followed Clayton’s trail to Ohio, the place where he lived. What they did was collect the garbage he left next to his house to be able to compare his DNA with that of the crime scene.

The analyses showed that the DNA found in the garbage items coincided with the genetic profile of the person who took Mary’s life.

The agents discovered that Clayton and Mary knew each other. Apparently they had graduated from the same high school and Mary was the bridesmaid at Clayton’s first wedding in 1982.

On April 29, 2021, Clayton Foreman was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

His former classmates were stunned by the accusations against the man. According to them, he was the one who plans the meetings of former students, he was even in charge of the tributes to those classmates who had died since graduation, as was the case with Mary.

Bob Wortham told the media that he was very proud of the police department because they had closed a case that had been unresolved for years.

The trial of 63-year-old Clayton Foreman was held in March 2024. The evidence against him was so overwhelming that he was finally sentenced to life in prison. When he is 93 years old can apply for parole.

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About the Creator

Based On a True Story

Hi everyone! My name is Marta and every week I write about true crime, always with an educational purpose.

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