80-year-old man arrested in 1969 cold case


Ralph Tyrone Cooper is seen in this mugshot released by the Houston Police Department on Aug. 16, 2018.

HOUSTON - The Houston Police Department has arrested Ralph Tyron Cooper, 80, for the case of a woman fatally shot in July 1969.

Cooper is charged with murder in the death of Mary Ann Burton, who was his common-law wife 49 years ago. Burton was only 21-years-old when she died.

The police department's cold case unit said Cooper, who was living in the 2400 block of South MacGregor Way, got into an argument with Burton and shot her in the head with a handgun. Police said he left Houston after the murder. Burton's body was found four days later in a vacant field. 

While Cooper was serving a sentence for an unrelated murder charge out of Bexar County, police received information about his location from family members.

According to police, Cooper admitted to his role in the shooting death of Burton. They spoke to him in Huntsville, where Cooper is already incarcerated.




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