TEXARKANA, Ark. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Texarkana Arkansas Police Department has identified the father of the Alexander siblings, Weldon Alexander, as the sole suspect in their brutal 1981 murder.
Karen, 14, and Gordon Alexander, 13, were attacked in their home on April 8, 1981, in the Carmichael Hill area of Texarkana, Arkansas. Police said the children were stabbed multiple times with a butter knife.
Gordon died immediately, and Karen was left in a three-day coma. She later passed away on April 11.
Detectives called it the worst crime scene any of them had seen.
Calvin Seward, a detective in the case, was in his early thirties at the time and was following the double homicide but eventually ran out of leads and the case went cold.
The cold case had been unsolved for more than 42 years, but after the Facebook page ‘Justice for Karen and Gordon Alexander’ gained popularity, TAPD decided to reopen the case in February of 2022.
Over the course of the next 18 months, Seward reinterviewed dozens of people named in the original case including many of their associates. He then re-submitted evidence to forensic scientists at the State Crime Lab.
In addition, TAPD found semen stains on the bedding, which led forensic scientist specialists to the siblings’ father, Weldon Alexander.
Karen’s injuries showed she was a victim of sexual assault and was raped numerous times within the 48 to 72 hours before her death.
Investigators believe Karen had been sexually assaulted over at least a six-month period before the murder.
How did Weldon get away with the double homicide?
TAPD reported that Weldon Alexander called the police after his shift at around 7:15 a.m. on April 8, 1981.
Weldon reported that he noticed the screen door and the wooden front door were ajar.
Weldon claimed upon entering the house, he found his son deceased in the kitchen and found his daughter, still alive, on her bed.
Officers arrived and confirmed Gordon was deceased and noted Karen was still breathing but suffering from extensive ‘sharp instrument trauma.’
Weldon told officers that his fingerprints were on the murder weapon because he removed the butter knife from their bodies before the officers arrived.
Karen was transferred to St. Michael Hospital, where she later died from her injuries.
Weldon Alexander was the last known person to see his victims alive, and investigators believe he likely sexually assaulted Karen before leaving for his graveyard shift.
Detective Gary Stringer, one of the first detectives to arrive at the scene, said that Gordon Alexander’s body had been cold to the touch when officers arrived at the scene.
With no sign of forced entry, these new pieces of evidence led the team to a theory that the children were assaulted before the father left for work around 11 p.m. the previous night.
Furthermore, trace evidence was discovered in the dried blood on Gordon’s hands, and Karen’s body contained fibers, brass, copper, and zinc all of which were materials used at Cooper Tire and Rubber, where Weldon worked.
Miller County Prosecuting Attorney Connie Mitchell determined Weldon Alexander, who died in 2014, to be the sole suspect in the murders of Gordon and Karen Alexander.
“It is our hope that the friends and remaining family of Gordon and Karen Alexander may find some peace in knowing that scientific and circumstantial evidence has been revealed sufficient to resolve this 42-year-old case,” TAPD said.