Police Arrest Earl Taylor For 1975 Murder

By Katie Hargitt

Published 07/01 2014 01:05PM

Updated 07/01 2014 07:40PM

Information provided by the Vigo County Sheriff's Department:

Detectives from the Vigo County Sheriff’s Office have made an arrest in the April 2, 1975 murder of Kathy N. Dean Taylor.

Kathy, 23, formerly of Vincennes, was married to Earl L. Taylor, then 22, of Terre Haute and formerly of Sullivan County.

On the evening of April 2, 1975 Earl Taylor said that he came home to find Kathy dead in the bathtub of their residence at 1 Canterbury Drive (now 7750 N. 37th Street) Terre Haute, IN.

Sheriff’s detectives learned that after Earl removed Kathy’s lifeless body from the tub he did not immediately contact authorities, but summoned a family member who later reported the death to the Sheriff’s Office. 

Earl later told Deputies that Kathy had been home alone taking a bath when an electronic clock radio apparently fell into the tub.

During the investigation Detectives noticed that the power cord on the clock radio appeared to have been changed to extend the length. The investigation revealed the factory cord length would not have allowed the radio to fall into the bathtub.

Retired Detective Tom Roberts said that during conversations with Earl Taylor, he offered a methodical minute by minute alibi of his whereabouts on April 2, 1975. An alibi that detectives later learned was not completely forthcoming.

Several years after Kathy’s death Earl Taylor's second wife, Mindy Svadeba Taylor, was killed. Her body was recovered from the driver's side of her Pontiac Fiero which was found submerged in a lake near Deming Park in Terre Haute.

Earl Taylor was arrested for the murder of his second wife and subsequently tried and convicted. In 1988 he received a sentence of 60 years in prison, but was released early in January 2014.

As part of an ongoing review of cold cases, Vigo County Sheriff’s officials recently re-opened the Kathy Taylor death investigation.

Katie Hargitt will have more on this story on WAWV News at Five and the WTWO Evening Edition at 6.

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