Keith Griffith, Daily Mail, May 2, 2017
Fresh details have emerged in the murder investigation of a young woman found strangled near Texas Christian University, as police reveal that the victim was raped, and the suspect charged had dated her.
Suspect Reginald Gerard Kimbro, 23, had dated the 22-year-old victim Molly Matheson three years ago, and was accused in two separate rape cases that never went to trial in 2012 and 2014, according to police in Fort Worth, Texas.
Matheson’s mother Tracy found her strangled to death in the bathroom of her apartment on April 10. Kimbro was arrested and charged with the murder on Friday.
Now police reveal that Kimbro texted Matheson on the night of the murder.
A message at 10.26pm on April 9 indicated that Kimbro had arrived at the apartment, police said. A surveillance video also showed a vehicle similar to Kimbro’s arriving around 10.25pm.
The suspect told police he had dated Matheson in 2014, when she was a student at the University of Arkansas. Kimbro has claimed he attended that university, but the school says it has no record of his enrollment.
Kimbro admitted to police that he’d visited Matheson on April 9, the night of the murder, claiming that the two began to kiss, but that she declined to have sex and he left
Matheson’s parents had previously released a statement saying that Kimbro was someone their daughter ‘sort of’ knew from the University of Arkansas.
Kimbro admitted to police that he’d visited Matheson on April, claiming that the two began to kiss, but that she declined to have sex and he left the apartment around 1.30pm, according to an arrest warrant affidavit reported by the Star-Telegram.
The surveillance video showed his suspected vehicle leaving the apartment closer to 2am, police said.
A text message from Kimbro to Matheson followed about an hour later.
‘Hey. Thanks again for the advice. Its nice seeing how far you’ve come. Im proud of you brej. Hmu when you get up,’ the text message at 2.59am read, using the slang term for a close friend.
Police say Matheson never read that final text message.
Matheson, who was not a student at TCU but lived near the campus, was found dead by her mother around 7.20 pm on April 10.
Investigators say the killer likely dragged her body into the shower and turned the water on to try to wash away evidence.
Police also found a fresh load of damp laundry in Matheson’s washing machine, which they suspect the murderer put in to try to cover up the crime.
The laundry included two pairs of women’s underwear, a pair of running shorts, a pillowcase, a pair of men’s underwear, a green fitted sheet, two wash cloths and a bath towel
Despite having gone through the wash, the clothes contained evidence of a sexual assault, police said. A rape kit has yet to be tested.
The arrest affidavit also revealed that Kimbro was investigated but never charged for rape in Plano, Texas in 2012, and arrested for raping a woman in South Padre Island in 2014, before the charges were dropped.
In the South Padre Island case, Kimbro met a woman at the Isla Grand Beach Resort.
They began to kiss and he took her into the women’s bathroom, according to a South Padre Island Police Department report cited in the affidavit.
The woman told cops that Kimbro tried to have sex with her in the resort bathroom, and when she refused, he began choking her and violently raped her.
She immediately called police, who arrested Kimbro at the scene, and a rape kit found his semen inside of her.
But Kimbro claimed the sex had been consensual, and prosecutors dropped the charges against him.
In Plano, Texas a woman told police that Kimbro had offered her $200 for oral sex, and when she refused and left his house, he followed her out to her car and apologized.
The woman agreed to drive Kimbro to a nearby school, where she said he choked her as he forcefully stripped off her clothes.
‘The victim felt that she was going to die because Kimbro was choking her and covering her mouth and nose so she couldn’t breathe,’ police wrote in the arrest warrant, according to NBC Dallas.
The woman tried to call 911, but Kimbro slammed her head into the ground and raped her, she later told police. Kimbro then drove her to another school, made her strip down again, and released her.
Although Kimbro’s DNA was found on the woman after she called police, he was never arrested, and no charges were ever filed.
It’s unclear why Kimbro was never charged, but Plano police spokesman Officer David Tilley told the Star-Telegram that the case is still ‘an open and active investigation.’
Kimbro was arrested on Thursday at his father’s home in Dallas in connection with Molly Matheson’s murder.
According to Kimbro’s Facebook page, he lives in Plano and studied marketing at the University of Arkansas, however the university has said it has no record of him being a student there.
Matheson also went to the University of Arkansas until she withdrew in 2015.
‘This has been an overwhelmingly trying time for our family and we are confident that justice will be served for Molly,’ they said.
‘It’s good to know there’s some clarity, some closure,’ said a student.
Tributes have begun to pour in for the former sorority member of Alpha Delta Phi, who has been described as ‘funny, kind, and wise beyond her years.’
She graduated from Keller Timber Creek High School in Winter Park, Florida.
Kaylie Kovach wrote on Facebook: ‘I’m so sick over finding out that I lost another friend from high school! What is our world coming to!?’
She added: ‘You were such a beautiful soul Molly Matheson. Hope you are having fun in Heaven. Prayers for the entire family and friends.’
The murder has shaken the community in Fort Worth.
Elise Vidaurri, who lives nearby, said Molly’s death sparks concerns for her own safety as well.
She said: ‘Last night, I was just praying that it was a mistake or an accident,’ Vidaurri said. ‘And then to find out it was a crime, a violent crime, is unsettling.’
‘Until we find whoever did this, I think a lot of people will be on edge,’ Vadaurri continued.
‘There’s a lot of young females and families who live over here.’