Former Boyfriend of Texas Teen Murdered After 1974 Valentine's Dance Relives Final Moments with Her

In a Dateline exclusive, Rodney McCoy recounts the last words Carla Walker told him as he was pistol-whipped by her attacker and knocked out

carla walker
Carla Walker. Photo: Facebook

Rodney McCoy was the last person to see his girlfriend, Carla Walker, alive before she was dragged out of his car after a Valentine's Day dance nearly 48 years ago.

He has lived with those final moments for more than half his life.

"I see Carla's face and she screams, 'Rodney, go get my dad,'" he tells Dateline NBC in a broadcast airing Friday (9 p.m. EST/8 p.m. CST). "And that's the last word I heard her say. That's the last time I saw her."

Walker, then 17, and McCoy were parked outside a Fort Worth, Texas, bowling alley after attending a dance at Western Hills High School on Feb. 17, 1974.

At the time, an unidentified man opened the passenger door and pulled her out, telling McCoy, "I am going to kill you," and started pistol-whipping him, according to an arrest warrant affidavit, reports WFAA.

"He nailed me pretty good on the first shot with the butt of the pistol. He put his hand inside the car and stuck the pistol about three or four inches from my face and started pulling the trigger. I do remember clicks — three clicks," McCoy tells Dateline in this week's episode. (An exclusive clip is shown below.)

For years, investigators from the Fort Worth Police Department were unable to close the case until they caught a break in September 2020. With assistance from advanced technology surrounding DNA testing and genealogy, law enforcement arrested Glen Samuel McCurley on capital murder charges for Walker's death.

McCurley had been on investigators' radar since they discovered a magazine for a .22-caliber Ruger pistol and determined that McCurley, a previously convicted car thief who lived about a mile from the bowling alley, had purchased such a gun.

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Interviewed in 1974, McCurley said his gun had been stolen while he was fishing, but he didn't report it because he was an ex-con, according to the arrest warrant.

Police learned McCurley was off work the night of the kidnapping and again the next day, and that his wife was out of town at the time. He denied any involvement.

Glen Samuel McCurley
Glen Samuel McCurley. Tarrant County Jail

When he was arrested, he continued to deny any involvement in Walker's death. She was found two days after she disappeared in a culvert where she'd been sexually assaulted and strangled.

But last year, during his murder trial, McCurley, now 78, confessed to the crime and entered a guilty plea. The trial was stopped and he was immediately sentenced to life in prison.

Walker's murder — and her ex-boyfriend's struggle to process the events following their Valentine's Day dance — are explored in depth in this week's episode of Dateline, airing Friday at 9 p.m. EST on NBC.

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