CAndy Montgomery wanted fireworks. That’s what she told her friend Sherry Cleckler about her affair with the man whose wife she was accused of killing with an axe.
Montgomery, a Christian homemaker from a northeastern Texas suburb, was the prime suspect in the death of her friend Betty Gore on Friday, June 13, 1980. Gore and Montgomery had met at the Methodist Church of Lucas, of which Montgomery was an active member. By 1978, Montgomery had begun a relationship with Gore’s husband, Allan.
Her story – that of a secret affair, followed by a criminal trial, testimony obtained in part through hypnosis sessions, and Montgomery’s eventual acquittal – is now told in two separate limited series. One of them, candy, starring Jessica Biel as Montgomery, aired May 9 on Hulu. (Elisabeth Moss was originally scheduled to play the role but had to drop out.) The other, love and deathis expected to air on HBO Max later this year after being adapted by twoTexas Monthly Article from 1984 and will feature Elizabeth Olsen in the same role.
Montgomery and her husband, Pat Montgomery, moved to Collin County, Texas in 1977, according to reports oxygen. Montgomery was raised in a military family and moved to different places during her young years. The Montgomerys had a son and a daughter. Corresponding Texas MonthlyTheir marriage was comfortable—Pat Montgomery made a good living at Texas Instruments, a technology company—but routine. Candy Montgomery, as Texas Monthly wrote writers Jim Atkinson and John Bloom in their book Proof of Love: A True Story of Passion and Death in the SuburbsShe told a friend she was “crazy bored”.
Candy Montgomery literally faced Allan Gore in the summer of 1978 while they were playing on the church volleyball court. Betty had met Allan while attending college, where loud oxygen, he was a teaching assistant in one of her classes. The two married in 1970 and had their first child, a daughter, before moving to Collin County.
Allan and Candy Montgomery’s chance meeting during the volleyball game was reportedly followed by a few weeks of flirting, leading to Montgomery finally confiding in Allan about her attraction. After some back and forth, weighing the pros and cons of a possible affair, Montgomery and Allan relented Texas Monthlydecided to have an affair starting December 12, 1978.
Montgomery and Allan saw each other for a few months. Montgomery reportedly told Allan she was afraid the affair was getting too intense, but the relationship continued. Shortly after the birth of Allan and Betty Gore’s second child, another daughter, in July 1979, Allan Montgomery began to signal that he wanted to distance himself from the affair and work on his marriage to Betty. It was Montgomery who finally told him, according to Atkinson and Bloom: “Allan, you seem to be leaving it to me. So I decided I won’t call. I won’t try to see you I will not bother you anymore.”
On June 13, 1980, Allan Gore, who was away on business and had tried unsuccessfully to reach his wife by phone, called his neighbor to ask him to see if Betty was home. He then called Montgomery, who told him that she had seen his wife earlier in the day and nothing seemed wrong.
Allan reportedly asked his neighbor Richard Parker to come back to his house and see if Betty’s car was in the garage. Parker and two other local acquaintances, Jerry McMahan and Lester Gayler, eventually set out together to investigate the apartment and find out why Betty was unavailable. Gayler discovered Betty’s body in the utility room — although, according to Atkinson and Bloom, he didn’t see it at first, but “thick, solidified reddish-brown oceans of blood glistening on the tiles.” Betty, it was later reported, had been hit by an ax 41 times.
A bloody footprint suggested investigators to look for “anyone of small stature, whether it be a child or a woman,” said former Collin County detective Steven Deffibaugh oxygen program caught. According to the network, Montgomery first told authorities that Betty and Allan’s eldest daughter stayed at her home overnight and that she saw Betty in the morning to get Alisa’s swimsuit before a swimming lesson. It was Allan who reportedly told detectives about his affair with Montgomery. From then on, Montgomery became the prime suspect in Betty’s murder. She was arrested on June 27, 1980 and charged with murder.
said Deffibaugh oxygen that when Montgomery put on the prison garb, the staff noticed “all those bruises and also a cut on her toe.” When Montgomery’s trial began in October 1980, her legal team made no attempt to deny that she had killed Betty Gore. However, they claimed she did so in self-defense and should therefore not be found guilty of the murder. Betty, they said, first attacked Montgomery with the ax and cut her toe.
Before the trial, Montgomery’s attorney, Don Crowder, had Dr. Called Fred Fason, a psychiatrist with experience in the practice of hypnosis.
Admissibility of testimony under hypnosis varies from state to state in the United States; The Justice Department has previously noted that “Federal courts dealing with the issue of hypnotically induced testimony by a prosecution witness have generally permitted the use of such testimony, holding that the fact of the hypnosis only enhanced the witness’s credibility.” and does not affect the witness’s competence or the admissibility of his testimony.”
In a caveat, the DOJ added that “in the late 1980s and 1990s, the issue of the admissibility … of hypnotically refreshed or enhanced testimony entered a ‘flux,’ caused largely by cases involving uncorroborated allegations of sexual abuse of Children undergoing ‘regression therapy’ or other forms of hypnosis-related therapy to evoke ‘repressed’ memories of childhood events. In this series of cases, many convictions were later overturned on appeal based on a reconsideration of the admissibility issue, eventually leading to the federal courts adopting a “case-by-case approach” in which the court “uses its discretion to consider everything.” ‘ could of factors determining the reliability of the evidence and the probative versus the adverse effect of testimony.'”
In Montgomery’s case, Fason said his sessions with Montgomery revealed childhood trauma as well as her memories of the day Betty Gore died. According to Atkinson and Bloom, by the end of the first session, Fason had “done what Crowder asked him to do. He had… found the trigger of Candy Montgomery’s anger.”
Corresponding Texas Monthly, Montgomery said she was at Betty Gore’s house to pick up Betty’s daughter’s bathing suit when Betty confronted her about her affair with Allan. Betty attacked Montgomery with an ax, hitting her on the head and on the toe. The two fought; Montgomery reportedly shoved Betty and, while Betty was averted, “brought the ax up with both hands and smashed the blade into the back of Betty’s head.” The physical struggle continued. According to Bloom and Atkinson, Fason testified that at one point Betty told Montgomery to say “shhhhhh,” which the psychiatrist claimed brought to the surface a childhood memory of Montgomery. According to Fason, there was “a connection” between a memory of Montgomery, silenced by her mother during a certain incident as a child, and Betty.
Ultimately, it took the jury just over three hours to reach a verdict and find Montgomery not guilty in the murder of Betty Gore United Press International On October 30, 1980, the agency reported the decision aloud. Montgomery ‘fought back tears, though’ UPI reports, “as she and her husband Pat were then ejected from the Collin County Courthouse under heavy guard [District Judge Tom Ryan] received a letter threatening her life.”
Corresponding The Dallas Morning News, Allan Gore eventually remarried and moved to a new place. Candy Montgomery is also said to have relocated and earned certification as a family counselor, according to the newspaper.
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