Police arrest fugitive in connection to double murder

By: Ashley Reynolds Email
By: Ashley Reynolds Email

Harlan County Sheriff Deputies say they arrested a fugitive wanted in California in a double murder case from more than 20 years ago.

Police say Harold Toney was living in the Baxter community for about ten years with his uncle.

Folks that live right next to Toney say he is a nice man that would do anything to help a neighbor.

Bobbie Dixon lives right next to where Toney lived with his uncle.

"I'd be out weed eating... he'd wave and I'd wave. I would go down to the end of my fence and have conversations.. but never would have thought anything...just a very nice individual that was always trying to help," said Dixon.

Dixon says Toney helped him with plumbing work.
He never thought his neighbor was a fugitive.

"It's really easy to overlook people. I think in this area we just happen to think everyone is good," said Dixon.

Sheriff deputies say Toney used to work as a mechanic and a roofer for Hulon and Elaine Hughes in Apple Valley, California. Police say Toney got in a fight with Hulon and threatened to kill him.

In the fall of 1988 the Hughes were found shot to death in their home. Toney was arrested for the murders but police did not find enough evidence to charge him. So the case went cold.

This spring, San Bernardino County cold case detectives reviewed the cases as part of a federal DNA grant. The case was reopened. During additional interviews, detectives say Toney confessed to friends he committed the murders.

"It gives the family closure and helps the family deal. This helps police because it gets someone that committed a murder off the streets and prevents them from committing another," said Winston Yeary with the Harlan County Sheriff's Department.

Toney will not be charged with murder until he is taken back to California.

Toney declined to comment from the detention center.

He also told police he has terminal cancer and he says he only has about six months left to live.

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