Man charged in 28-year-old cold case of woman killed during gun battle

Man charged in 28-year-old cold case of woman killed during gun battle
Tommy Edward Harris, 62, of Skiatook, Okla., was arrested Thursday, May 14, 2020, and charged with first-degree murder and unlawful removal of a dead body. Harris was arrested in connection with the death of Kim Marlene McVey, seen at left, who was found May 23, 1992, with a gunshot wound to the head. (Tulsa County Sheriff's Office)

TULSA, Okla. — An Oklahoma man has been arrested in connection with a 28-year-old cold case homicide of a woman found shot to death behind a drug house, authorities said.

Tommy Edward Harris, 62, of Skiatook, was charged Thursday with first-degree murder and unlawful removal of a dead body, according to Tulsa County Jail records. He is being held without bail.

The body of Kim Marlene McVey, 31, was found May 23, 1992, with a gunshot wound to the head. She had been dumped behind a partially-constructed shed in the 9600 block of North Memorial Drive in Owasso, just outside of Tulsa.

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Tommy Edward Harris, 62, of Skiatook, Okla., was charged Thursday, May 14, 2020, with first-degree murder and unlawful removal of a dead body. Harris was arrested in connection with the death of Kim Marlene McVey, who was found May 23, 1992, with a gunshot wound to the head.
Tommy Edward Harris, 62, of Skiatook, Okla., was charged Thursday, May 14, 2020, with first-degree murder and unlawful removal of a dead body. Harris was arrested in connection with the death of Kim Marlene McVey, who was found May 23, 1992, with a gunshot wound to the head. (Tulsa County Jail)

Tulsa County Sheriff Vic Regalado said Thursday during a news conference that McVey, Harris and other unnamed people were staying at the home, described as a known drug house. On May 16, a man who has since died went to the house to settle a drug deal that had gone bad.

“This individual, Joe Green, wanted to get his money back and/or the methamphetamine that was sold,” Regalado said. “A gun battle occurred, and the person there who came to get the drugs took victim McVey in a headlock and dragged her outside of the residence and into the front yard.”

Using McVey as a shield, Green made demands of Harris, who was still inside the house. Harris fired a gun through a window, striking McVey in the left temple, the sheriff said.

Harris, who was then 34 years old, dragged McVey’s body into the house and later hid her remains behind the shed out back.

Watch the news conference below, courtesy of Fox 23 in Tulsa.

Arrest made in 1992 Tulsa cold case

COLD CASE ARREST: Tulsa County deputies arrested a man today in connection with the 1992 murder of Kim McVey. MORE >>> https://bit.ly/2AtG2K2

Posted by FOX23 News on Thursday, May 14, 2020

Regalado said Harris confessed the crime to multiple people over the years. Those witnesses eventually came forward with what they knew.

Detectives arrested him Thursday at work in Osage County.

“This is a bittersweet moment,” Regalado said. “Bitter in the fact that Ms. McVey still has family. They have been notified. They’re out of state and were unable to be here today. Our hearts certainly go out to them.

“Sweet in the fact that we have now been able to provide closure to her family. It was years in the making but, again, at the end of the day, justice, sometimes slow-moving, still happens.”