Texas police arrest Alabama inmate in 1974 death of officer

On Dec. 1, 1974, Officer Matthew Murphy was shot after stopping a vehicle at West Main Street and U.S. Highway 281 in Alice, Texas. (Courtesy: DPS)
On Dec. 1, 1974, Officer Matthew Murphy was shot after stopping a vehicle at West Main Street and U.S. Highway 281 in Alice, Texas. (Courtesy: DPS)

ALICE, Texas (AP) — Police in South Texas say they’ve arrested a man in the fatal 1974 shooting of a police officer following a traffic stop.

Police in Alice, about 45 miles west of Corpus Christi, announced Monday that a man currently serving a life sentence in Alabama is charged in the death of officer Matthew Murphy.

Authorities say Murphy was a narcotics officer who had returned to patrol duty at the time of the traffic stop. He was shot multiple times and died later at a hospital.

Investigators say the suspect, identified by the Alabama Department of Corrections as 70-year-old Robert Lopez, at one point bragged to a fellow inmate that he had shot a “narc” named Murphy.

Lopez is serving a life term after being sentenced in 1981 on a robbery conviction.

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