For more than 40 years, the shooting death of officer Matthew Murphy has remained an Alice unsolved mystery.
The police department has picked up the investigation from time to time, but little is still known about the night the the Alice patrolman was gunned down. However, a statewide effort to shed light on unsolved cases involving Texas law enforcement officers is hoping it can produce a lead in the case.
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is seeking the public's help in solving the 1974 murder of Alice Police Department Officer Matthew Murphy, who was shot and killed during a traffic stop. As part of the Office of the Governor and Texas Crime Stopper's Fallen Hero Reward – Texas Remembers program, a reward up to $20,000 is being offered for information that results in this case being solved.
All tips are guaranteed to be anonymous.
On Dec. 1, 1974, Officer Murphy was shot after stopping a vehicle at West Main Street and U.S. Highway 281 in Alice, Texas. Several minutes after the initial stop, another officer found Murphy suffering from gunshot wounds. Murphy was transported to a local hospital, where he later died.
Witnesses described a two-door car leaving the area of the shooting, and it is believed the vehicle was occupied by more than one individual. Responding officers were unable to locate the vehicle after it left the scene.
To be eligible for the cash rewards, anyone with information about the murder of Officer Matthew Murphy can provide anonymous tips in three different ways:
Call the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-252-TIPS (8477).
Text the letters "DPS"– followed by your tip – to 274637 (CRIMES) from your cell phone.
Created in January 2016, the Fallen Hero Reward program is designed to help generate new investigative leads in unsolved cases involving a Texas law enforcement officer or first responder who was murdered or suffered an incapacitating injury while in the line of duty or while acting in an official capacity. The program is funded by the Governor's Criminal Justice Division and administered by DPS.
Since there is no statute of limitations on the offense of murder, the state has the moral and statutory obligation to pursue these cases to a successful resolution; or until no other lead is viable.
Agencies that may have an unresolved or cold case that meets the criteria for the Fallen Hero Reward program are encouraged to email Texas Crime Stoppers at firstname.lastname@example.org.