30 years later, cold case remains unsolved
Dozens gather for candlelight vigil to remember Copper Dollar Ranch murder victims Melisa Gregory, Steven Fisher
Jasper County Sheriff John Halferty remembers Melisa Gregory as a friendly classmate he met in junior high. He never imagined that, decades later, he would spend years investigating her murder.
Several dozen people gathered for a candlelight vigil outside the Jasper County Courthouse on Sunday night to mark the 30-year anniversary of the murders of 17-year-old Melisa Lynn Gregory and 20-year-old Steven Joseph Fisher at the Copper Dollar Ranch northwest of Newton. Halferty shared his own memories of Melisa during the event and his hope that the cold case will be solved.
“I wasn’t smart enough to ask her [Melisa] out on a date in junior high,” Halferty said, evoking laughter from the small crowd. “I was one of those really shy kids, believe it or not, but my favorite memory of her is that we sat next to each other in a math class. I was scared to death — I was new to junior high — and I just remember how friendly she was to me. I live with that memory, and I’m in a position now where I think it is time. There are people locally that can help us with this case, and we’re asking you to come forward and talk to us.”
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