Pennsylvania woman charged with husband's 1980s cold case murder

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PERRY COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) – A Pennsylvania woman has been charged in the murder of Carl Jarvis, who was found shot in the head 35 years ago.

According to Pennsylvania State Police, Carl Jarvis’ body was found in Millerstown on August 10, 1987, with a gunshot wound to the back of his head.

Officials said his wife, Judith Ann Jarvis, had made a domestic dispute call shortly after midnight. Judith told state troopers at the time that her husband had been breaking things and that she was scared.

Troopers attempted to make contact with Carl that evening, but could not find him.

He was later found naked inside a bedroom with two visible wounds to his head.

A .22 caliber revolver with a six inch barrel and a two-inch trigger guard was found on the bed. An autopsy determined Carl Jarvis died from a close-contact gunshot wound to the head from the .22 caliber gun.

During the autopsy, Jarvis was also found to have a blood alcohol content of 0.13%.

An examination found blood stains on Judith Jarvis’ pajamas, which she claimed were from a goose bite. The pajamas were placed into evidence. Blood was also found on a hand towel.

Recently, officials reexamined the autopsy findings and police reports and determined the manner of death was a murder, saying the evidence did not support a suicide.

In January 2021, troopers interviewed Judith again, who repeated the claim that the blood on her pajamas was hers and that she did not shoot her husband. She told police her husband threw a coffee pot at her, but that he did not hit her. She also denied knowing her husband was dead when troopers arrived that evening and said that she did not touch his body.

Judith Jarvis, now 76, was arrested on Tuesday and charged with one count of murder. She remains in the Cumberland County Prison after bail was denied.



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