The year is 1968, its October in Odessa, Tx a young woman visiting her local laundry mat has suddenly been reported missing, leaving friends, and family in a state of worry and anxiety over their missing loved one. Unfortunately, the body of 24 year old Linda Cougat would not be discovered until two months from the date of her disappearance (Oct. 19, 1968), her hands bound with one of her nylon stockings, and her throat tightly wrapped with the other her body had been violated before, being dumped off in a field in northwest Odessa, TX(Discovered DEC. 10, 1968). Unknown at the time she would only be the first out of five more victims to follow that would have this case nicked named “The Odessa Lust Murders”.
The second victim to follow Cougat would be a hotel owner known as Dorothy Smith (Age unknown), her body would be discovered on November 5, 1968 in her Monahan’s apartment with her hands bound via television cable shot to death. Less than two years later (618 days later) on July 16, 1970 approximately 36 miles away from Cougat’s murder, in the city of Odessa, Tx the body of 26 year old Go-Go dancer, Eula Miller would be discovered in her apartment home, naked with multiple stab wounds, she would be the third victim in the string of murders that would plague west Texas.
The night of September 15, 1970 in the city of Kermit, Tx 27-year-old mother Nancy Mitchelle (or Nancy Miller depending on source), would be abducted from her home her children would be found still sleeping in her bed. Un fortunately Nancy Mitchelle/Miller’s whereabouts’ wound not be discovered until almost 9 months later, she would be found in a secluded spot east of Kermit, Texas on a oil lease, it was determined she had succumbed to her stab wounds, after an examination of her skeletal remains. Back In the city of Odessa the first disappearance for the year of 1971 for the city would be that of 24-year-old Ruth Maynard, The wife of an Odessa police officer her body would be discovered 2 miles away from the location where Linda Cougats body was discovered three years earlier. It would not be until the abduction and murder of 26-year-old, Gloria Sue Nix Green from her job at an oilwell service company located on a rural Kermit highway, that caused investigating officials to double their efforts. Her car was seen left behind at the office where she worked, it was discovered she had also left her shoes and purse inside the building. Her disappearance would be the case that linked the series of murders that had occurred in the three-year time span.
According to https://texasarchive.org/2013_01450 Johnny Meadows was arrested for unrelated charges in Aztec, New Mexico while incarcerated he began bragging about a murder he had committed in Odessa, Texas. This caused Ector county sheriff A.M. “slim” Gabrel co be contacted and flown out to investigate Meadows, according to multiple sources a deal was made between sheriff Gabrel, and Meadows. $2000 dollars was given to Meadows wife to help her make ends meet out of the sheriff’s pocket, in exchange for the location of Gloria Sue Nix Green’s body. Green’s body was discovered in a vacant lot in south Odessa under a rotting mattress, Meadows signed his confession for the murders of Cougat, Smith, and Maynard, pleading guilty to the murder of Gloria Sue Nix Green. However, he later retracted his confessions for the murders of Cougat, Smith, And Maynard stating that he had been coerced to confessed by Sheriff A.M. Gabrel a judge moved to dismiss the murder charges. Johnny Meadows was never officially convicted of the murders of Cougat, Smith, and Maynard, because of this there is much controversy surrounding the exact number of victims Meadows had killed. The murders of the three women currently remain unsolved following the dismissal of charges against Meadows.
In 1990 Meadows was released on parole, residing in Houston two short years later he would be incarcerated again, this time for sexual assault of a young woman. He would finish out the remainder of his life until the year 2000 when he died at the Pulunsky unit in Livingston, Texas.