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  • Writer's pictureDennis McCaslin

Defrosting Cold Cases: New eyes on a 31 1/2 year-old Johnson County mystery

Updated: May 1, 2020

In November of 1988, a 14-year-old Clarksville girl, Brandy Hutchins, was found brutally murdered in an old abandoned house on Whippoorwill Road – County Road 6, roughly four miles north of Coal Hill, Arkansas.

According to police records, the body of Brandy Dawn Hutchins, was discovered by two hunters in the root cellar of the abandoned house that was once known as the “old John Emery” house.

The two hunters were searching for their dogs when they came across Brandy's shoe. Her shoe led them to a shallow grave where Brandy’s lifeless body had been buried.

An autopsy report indicated that Brandy was shot in the forehead with a .22 caliber gun.

Authorities do not believe Brandy was raped, as she was found fully clothed.

Inside the house where Brandy’s body was discovered, investigators found satanic symbols such as a pentagram, the numbers 666, the letters KKK and “redrum” – murder spelled backwards.

Investigators were unsure when the symbols were originally drawn as they were created in chalk which makes the origin date difficult to trace.

Despite this case being over 30 years old, Today in Fort Smith has assigned an Investigative Reporter to work this case to see what can be uncovered.

You can call us at 479-461-0126 with information or memories of the case. If you have information about the case that might help law enforcement you are asked to call Lt. Jeff Wood at the Johnson County Sheriff Office at (479) 754-7810.

- to be continued

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