CBS 4 Exclusive: Hot trail on a Harlingen cold case

Local News

Hot trail on a Harlingen cold case (Source: KGBT Photo)

It’s one of the more infamous ‘whodunit’s’ in all South Texas. A young, Harlingen mother found with 25 stab wounds, a cut throat, and a broken neck. No arrests were ever made in the killing of 23-year-old Candy Mora-Fletcher.

For 45 years, the case file remained quiet, until a new lead on the decades-old crime presented itself.

“We wanted to make sure our investigation was thorough, we wanted to make sure we proceeded timely and we proceeded when we had a good case,” says Cameron County District Attorney Luis Saenz.

A good case is exactly what Harlingen Police and the Texas Rangers thought they had.

Nearly 50 years of curiosity all coming to a head in recent years.

Saenz says, “the staff put together a team of first years whose only job was working on the case.”

In 1973, the young mother was found in her apartment at the North Star Village on Lozcano Road. An investigation ensued, but no suspect was ever named.

More than four decades later, a glimmer of hope for those looking for answers.

“Once the investigator was able to put the entire case together where it made sense to him, it didn’t take long to realize there was one prime suspect that was left out there and everything seemed to point to him, and that was a man by the name of Lewis Brewster,” says Commander Osborne of the Harlingen Police Department. 

According to Osborne, Brewster was the man who found Mora and called police.

He says the investigators believe the two were romantically involved.

“We believe when the relationship was called off, he may have taken matters more seriously,” says Osborne.

Over the years, Brewster moved to California and when investigators traveled out to interview him, they say his answers and body language didn’t do him any favors.

“He did allude to the fact that he knew we were looking for him and we’d arrest him if we came back and there seemed to be some sort of solace with that,” says Osborne.

Last November, the case took its final blow. Brewster passed away due to complications from diabetes.

Mora now rests at the Monta Meta Memorial Park in San Benito.

Thursday marked the 47th anniversary of the crime.

Before the suspect died, D.A. Saenz says the prosecution was on the verge of presenting the case to the grand jury. That move was only two weeks away.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Community Stories