Bowling Green Man Wanted in Cold Case Slaying of Wife in Custody

Feb 21, 2014

Leland Neal arrested in Mexico.

A man wanted in the cold case killing of his wife in south-central Kentucky has been captured in Mexico. 

Prosecutors took out a warrant last year, charging Leland Neal in the death of his estranged wife Carol Neal.

The Bowling Green social worker was reported missing in 1998. Her body was never found, but hikers discovered part of her skull in 2003 in the Daniel Boone National Forest. 

Mexican authorities were holding Leland Neal about a week ago in connection with a robbery when they discovered the murder warrant and contacted U.S. officials.  Warren County Commonwealth’s Attorney Chris Cohron says Neal is now in custody in Texas.

"The warrants we had outstanding against him were served on Mr. Neal," stated Cohron.  "He was lodged in the Harris County Detention Center in Houston, Texas and should be extradited to Warren County in the next couple of weeks."

At the time of her  disappearance 16 years ago, Carol was separated from Leland and the couple was in the midst of divorce proceedings.  An affidavit stated that Carol had filed a domestic violence report against her estranged husband.

Despite never finding Carol Neal’s body, Cohron is confident justice will be served.

“I think the investigation that’s been done by the Bowling Green Police Department was very extensive and very complete," added Cohron.  "I am just thankful we will now have the opportunity to present our case before Warren Circuit Court and hopefully bring closure to the family.”

No additional individuals are expected to be charged in Carol Neal's homicide.