The Unsolved Murder of Cathy McCune
Case File Overview
On January 16th, 2003, 43-year-old Cathy McCune and her 44-year-old husband Richard stopped in at their automotive parts store, A-1 Auto Parts, in Toledo, Ohio. After closing the store and having dinner, the pair returned around 6:30 pm to retrieve some paperwork and to ensure their pipes hadn’t frozen.
Ten minutes later, Cathy was fatally shot in the back of the head, and Richard was shot in the leg.
Richard told the authorities that a masked man entered their business through the unlocked front door. He said he heard two loud popping noises and headed to the office to investigate. Richard explained he found the robber standing near his injured wife. It’s believed that Cathy was shot while unlocking the safe. The perpetrator fired two to three shots at Richard, hitting him in the leg, and then fled with an undisclosed amount of money and the murder weapon.
Richard called 911, and police quickly arrived at the scene. He described the killer as a masked black or hispanic male, at least 6 feet tall (183 centimetres), and over 240 pounds (109 kilograms). Witnesses in the area recalled seeing a person fitting that description in a dark-colored, full-size car, possibly a Dodge Intrepid, with an Ohio license plate.
Cathy’s killer has never been found.
Case File Theories
Cathy was murdered by someone she knew
Was Cathy killed by her husband Richard? We know that when a person is killed more often than not the crime is perpetrated by someone intimately connected to them. And it’s interesting that Cathy was fatally shot in the head, whereas Richard was only shot in the leg. Also, how lucky could the robber have been to find the couple at the shop during their quick stop in? Was the killer Richard himself or someone he hired to carry out the murder, someone he told exactly when and where to strike?
Keep in mind, though, there has been no mention of trouble in Cathy and Richard’s relationship. Even more, the police have never identified Richard as a person of interest. Plus, it’s possible that the killer happened upon the pair by chance at their store or was casing the shop in hopes of an opportunity to rob the place. The “good timing” of the crime doesn’t necessarily indicate Richard’s guilt. Also, if Richard did commit the crime, what did he do with the murder weapon? It was nowhere to be found. Did he have time to stash it somewhere, especially seeing as he had been shot in the leg? I think it’s doubtful. Given all of this, I’m leaning towards the next theory.
Cathy was murdered by a stranger
Was Cathy killed by a stranger during a robbery? This is the likeliest scenario. The police have stated that they think only one person is responsible for the crime, and as they have never cast any suspicion on Richard, we can assume that person is a stranger to the McCunes. Often the simplest answer is the right one, and I think this is a tragic case of a robbery gone wrong. Richard provided the police with a description of the suspect, and other witnesses in the area saw someone matching the person he described. It’s highly probable that this person is guilty of Cathy’s murder.
Who do you think murdered Cathy?
Cathy’s father Frank describes his daughter as a good person who “collected cut glass, finished furniture, and liked to make improvements around the house.” One of Cathy’s neighbours told reporters that she was a great neighbour who was friendly and talkative. Cathy’s murder has deeply affected her loved ones, and they deserve answers.
The Toledo Police Department is working hard to find Cathy’s killer. They have utilized social media and the press in hopes to generate tips from the public. Someone out there knows something.
Anyone with information regarding the death of Cathy McCune should call Crime Stoppers at 419-255-1111. Those with information may be eligible for a reward.
“Police seek clues to solve slaying during A-1 Auto Parts robbery” – Toledo Blade article
“TPD to revisit 15-year-old cold case on social media Tuesday” – NBC 24 News article
Interested in unsolved murder cases? Check out the unsolved murder of the Nation River Lady and mysterious slaying of realtor Lindsay Buziak.