New Information About the Murder of Carol Neal

By: Lauren Forsythe Email
By: Lauren Forsythe Email

Carol Neal disappeared in 1998, and evidence led police to believe she was murdered.

It took fourteen years, but Bowling Green Police have now identified the possible killer.

When Carol Neal went missing in 1998, police and family members were left without answers.

After years of doubt, worry, and sorrow for the family of Carol Neal, they may now have some closure.

"It's been hard to swallow that we couldn't get what we needed in order to pursue it further. Just couldn't," says Barbara Smith, Carol Neal's mother.

Smith has gone without closure for several years for her daughters death.

Carol Neal, 30, went missing on November 10, 1998.

"When our officers were taking the missing person's report they went into the house of miss Neal and located evidence there that would lead them to believe that Miss Neal had been killed," Bowling Green Police Public Information Officer Ronnie Ward says.

The blood on this couch was the only thing left of Carol Neal.

Until 2003, when two hikers in McCreary County stumbled upon a skull.

"We sent that skull off to the lab for analysis and it was determined that it was Miss Neal's skull. We never did located the remains or the rest of her body anywhere in that area," Officer Ward says.

Smith says the week her daughter's skull was found, Carol's estranged husband, Leland Neal, Jr. asked for a favor.

"He called me and he said could you bring the boys back over to your house this weekend I've got something i need to do and I can't do it with them and that was the same week that they found the skull," Smith says.

She believes Leland moved Carol's remains.

Leland was last heard from in 2010.

" He was last seen going into Mexico," Warren County Commonwealth Attorney Chris Cohron says, "There's been warrants outstanding for him since 2008 on some unrelated cases. When he failed to show up for those charges in 2008, it kind of re-energized the investigation."

Bowling Green Police say plenty of evidence has been gathered and they are ready to make an arrest in this investigation.

For more information on this story, visit our "Crime Stoppers Crime of the Week" story.

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