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St. George Man Arrested In Connection With 1986 Texas Murder

FILE (Comal County, Texas, Sheriff's Office/Facebook)

NEW BRAUNFELS, Texas — Authorities in Comal County, Texas, announced two men, one from Utah and another from Ohio, have been arrested in connection with the 1986 murder of a 56-year-old man.

The Comal County Sheriff’s Office said 56-year-old Tracey Keith Loy, of St. George, and 57-year-old Mark Gatten, of Quaker City, Ohio, have each been arrested and booked into jail on one count of murder.

On Aug. 26, 1986, authorities responded to a camping area in a park near Canyon Lake, Texas, about 35 miles north of San Antonio, and found the body of Charles Robert Hardin.

“An autopsy was conducted and the manner of death was ruled a homicide,” deputies said.

Almost 35 years later, the Texas Rangers were asked to assist in reviewing the case. Evidence from the crime scene was resubmitted to the state crime laboratory in Austin for additional forensic testing.

“Through investigation, Loy and Gatten were eventually identified as persons of interest,” deputies said.

Loy was interviewed by a Ranger in St. George on May 9 before an arrest warrant was issued. He was extradited to Texas on May 31 and booked into the Comal County Jail.

An arrest warrant was also obtained for Gatten, who is currently awaiting extradition from Ohio to Texas.

“The Comal County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the Texas Rangers, St. George Police Department, Utah State Bureau of Investigation, Guernsey County Sheriff’s Office and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation for their assistance in this investigation.”

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