A 16-year-old girl named Mary Jones from Morristown, Tennessee was lured into the woods and raped before being killed. Her friend Mitzi Holt Sizemore was also attacked, but she managed to flee with her life and make her way to the nearby house to get help.
Investigation Discovery’s “On The Case with Paula Zahn: a Predator In the Woods” chronicles the murder and shows Mitzi’s role in helping the police bring the killer to justice. We have the answers if you’re interested in this case or want to find out who the perpetrator is.
Mary Jones: How did she die?
Mary Jones, 16, lived in Morristown when she was murdered with her family. Mary was described by those who knew her as a bright student who loved making new friends and was always willing to help others. She was also known for her smile and cheerful personality. Mary was close friends with Mitzi Holt Sizemore (also from the same area). They were close friends and did almost everything together. People didn’t know about the terrible tragedy that would befall the teens.
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Mitzi Holt Sizemore
Mary and Mitzi were enjoying their time together on July 20, 1980, when a man pulled up to them in a car. He claimed to be an undercover officer. The man asked the teenagers about a runaway boy he was apparently concerned about. Through a series of lies, the man could get the girls into his truck and drive to a remote area in Hamblen County. The man attacked Mitzi after he got into the woods. After beating her mercilessly, he then stabbed her with a knife and cut her throat before handcuffing him to a tree. Mary was then stabbed multiple times and raped by the assailant.
Mary died from her injuries shortly after the attack. Mitzi, however, managed to free Mary from her restraints, and she rushed for help. The attacker was not found by authorities when they arrived at the scene. An autopsy revealed that Mary had been stabbed to death. However, Mitzi was traumatized, and officers transferred her to a hospital.
Who Killed Mary Jones
The initial investigation into Mary’s murder proved difficult because the police had no leads or witnesses. Officers thoroughly searched the crime scene and surveyed the area looking for witnesses. However, they were back at square one. However, even after numerous interviews with Mary’s friends and Mitzi’s family, authorities could not find a suspect. People had no idea why the teens would be hurt. Detectives had to wait until Mitzi recovered from her mental and physical trauma before asking any questions.
Once Mitzi could answer questions, detectives enlisted her assistance and compiled a description of the perpetrator. The description helped speed up the investigation, and the cops could track down a Tennessee resident, Randy May, who matches the suspect’s profile perfectly. The police then conducted a D.N.A. test. Detectives could determine that Randy’s D.N.A.D.N.A. was identical to Mary’s.
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Where Is Randy May Now?
Randy pleaded not guilty when he was brought before the court. The jury disagreed and convicted Randy of murder and attempted killing. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1981. Randy has been to seven parole hearings since 1981, but none of them has resulted in a release. He is currently in Bledsoe County Correctional Center in Bledsoe County, Tennessee. His next parole hearing will be in 2023. However, his family and the residents of Morristown are determined to prevent that from happening.