Dad looking for daughter's killer shoots himself outside police office

Saturday, June 8, 2024 - A 76-year-old dad has killed himself after 22 years of searching for the person who killed his daughter.

Jerry Harris, a former Marine, spent more than two decades looking for Jennifer’s murderer. She was just 28 when her body was found washed up on a river bank in May 2002.

On Tuesday morning, June 4, he took his own life outside the Fannin County Sheriff’s Office but made it clear in one of three letters that it was not related to the cold case.

In one letter addressed to Sheriff Mark Johnson, he said he was tired of dealing with his own health issues and that it was his choice to take his life.

He also said that he chose the location to make it easier for first responders.

Jennifer was last seen on May 12, 2002, and her Jeep was discovered abandoned on a road near Lake Bonham. Six days later, fishermen discovered her decomposing body floating in the Red River and her uterus had been removed.

Jennifer’s cause of death was ruled to be homicidal violence. $3,000 was offered for information leading to an arrest.

A private investigator in the case, Jim Holloway, last spoke to Harris in 2015 and said he remembered him “'being so sad and broken down over this that he just didn’t know who to turn to”.

“He was just bewildered, this ate up with sadness and sorrow,” Holloway told KXII.

The investigator added that Harris was seeking closure.

“He told me one time, he said, I hope they do solve it before I die,” Holloway said.

Sheriff-elect Cody Shook said all cold cases will be reviewed using the latest technological tools.

“All families deserve closure regarding their loved ones,” he told the TV station, “And I look forward to having access to the cases and seeing if there are any investigative options that can be applied.”

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