Inside the grisly murder story that inspired the new series ‘Candy’

CAndy Montgomery wanted fireworks. That’s what she told her friend Sherry Cleckler about her affair with the man whose wife she was accused of axing to death.

Montgomery, a Christian housewife from suburban northeast Texas, was the prime suspect in the death of her friend Betty Gore on Friday, June 13, 1980. Gore and Montgomery had met at Lucas Methodist Church in New York. which Montgomery was an active member. In 1978, Montgomery began a relationship with Gore’s husband, Allan.

His story, that of a secret affair followed by a criminal trial, of testimony obtained in part through hypnosis sessions, and of Montgomery’s final acquittal, will now be told in two separate series. One of them, Candy, features Jessica Biel in the role of Montgomery and began streaming on Hulu on May 9 (Elisabeth Moss was originally set to star, but had to drop out). The other, love and deathis expected to premiere on HBO Max later this year, after being adapted from two articles from the Texas Monthly from 1984, and will feature the participation of Elizabeth Olsen in the same role.

Montgomery and her husband Pat Montgomery moved to Collin County, Texas, in 1977, according to oxygen. Montgomery had grown up in a military family and moved to various places during his youth. The Montgomerys had a son and a daughter. According to Texas MonthlyTheir marriage was comfortable (Pat Montgomery was earning well at Texas Instruments, a technology company), but routine. Candy Montgomery, as the writers of the Texas Monthly Jim Atkinson and John Bloom in their book Evidence of Love: A True Story of Passion and Death in the Suburbstold a friend that she was “going crazy with boredom.”

Candy Montgomery literally ran into Allan Gore during the summer of 1978, while the two were playing on the church volleyball court. Betty had met Allan at college, where, according to oxygen, he was a teaching assistant in one of Betty’s classes. The couple married in 1970 and had their first daughter before moving to Collin County.

Supposedly, Allan and Candy’s chance encounter during the volleyball game was followed by a few weeks of flirting, leading Montgomery to finally confess his attraction to Allan. After some back and forth during which they considered the pros and cons of a possible romance, Montgomery and Allan decided to start a relationship on December 12, 1978, according to Texas Monthly.

Montgomery and Allan saw each other for a few months. Apparently, Montgomery told Allan that he feared the affair was getting too intense, but the relationship continued. Shortly after the birth of Allan and Betty’s second daughter in July 1979, Allan began indicating to Montgomery that he wanted to walk away from the relationship and work on his marriage to Betty. It was Montgomery who, according to Atkinson and Bloom, finally told him, “Allan, you seem to be leaving everything to me. So I’ve decided I won’t call. I will not try to see you. I wont bother you anymore”.

On June 13, 1980, Allan Gore, who was away on business and had tried to reach his wife by phone to no avail, apparently called his next-door neighbor to ask him to check to see if Betty was home. He then called Montgomery, who told him that he had seen his wife earlier that day and that nothing seemed wrong.

Allan reportedly asked his neighbor, Richard Parker, to come back to his house and check to see if Betty’s car was in the garage. Parker and two other local acquaintances, Jerry McMahan and Lester Gayler, eventually set out together to search the house and find out why they couldn’t locate Betty. Gayler discovered Betty’s body in the utility room, although, according to Atkinson and Bloom, he initially saw not her body, but “thick, clotted, reddish-brown oceans of blood glistening on the tiles.” Betty was later reported to have been attacked with an ax 41 times.

Betty Gore died on June 13, 1980


Thanks to a bloody footprint, investigators knew to look for someone “of short stature, whether it’s a child or a woman,” Steven Deffibaught, a former Collin County investigator, told the show. Snapped from oxygen. According to the network, Montgomery initially told authorities that Betty and Allan’s oldest daughter had stayed at her house overnight, and that she saw Betty in the morning to pick up Alisa’s swimsuit before leaving. his swimming class. Apparently, it was Allan who revealed his affair with Montgomery to the detectives. From then on, Montgomery became the prime suspect in Betty’s murder. She was arrested on June 27, 1980 and charged with her murder.

Deffibaugh mentioned oxygen that when Montgomery changed into his prison uniform, staff noted “bruises and also a cut toe.” When he began his trial in October 1980, his legal team did not seek to deny that he had killed Betty Gore. But they maintained that she had done it in self-defense and therefore she should not be found guilty of murder. Betty, they said, had first attacked Montgomery with her axe, cutting his foot.

Before the trial, Montgomery’s attorney, Don Crowder, sought out Dr. Fred Fason, a psychiatrist with experience practicing hypnosis.

The admissibility of testimony given under hypnosis varies in the US from state to state; The Department of Justice has previously noted that “Federal courts dealing with the hypnotically induced testimony of a prosecution witness have generally permitted the use of such testimony, holding that the act of hypnosis affects only the credibility of the witness and not the competence of the witness or the admissibility of his testimony”.

Jessica Biel as Candy Montgomery in the series Candy from Hulu


Melanie Lynskey as Betty Gore in the series Candy from Hulu


In a warning, the Justice Department added that “in the late 1980s and 1990s, the question of the admissibility … of hypnotically updated or enhanced testimony entered a state of ‘flux,’ largely caused by cases involving unsubstantiated allegations of childhood sexual abuse following ‘regression therapy’ or other forms of hypnosis-related therapy to bring back ‘repressed’ memories of childhood incidents. In this series of cases, many convictions were later overturned on appeal based on a restatement of the admissibility issue, eventually resulting in the federal courts adopting a ‘case-by-case approach’, in which the court has ‘ discretion to estimate all factors to determine the reliability of the evidence and the probative effect against the prejudicial effect of the testimony’”.

In Montgomery’s case, Fason claimed that his sessions with Montgomery had revealed childhood trauma, as well as memories of the day Betty Gore died. According to Atkinson and Bloom, by the end of their first session, “Fason had done what Crowder asked him to do. He had found… the trigger for Candy Montgomery’s rage.”

Elizabeth Olsen as Candy Montgomery in the series love and death from HBO Max

(Courtesy of HBO Max)

Elizabeth Olsen as Candy Montgomery in the series love and death from HBO Max

(Courtesy of HBO Max)

According to Texas MonthlyMontgomery revealed that she went to Betty Gore’s house to pick up her daughter’s swimsuit, when the woman confronted her about her affair with Allan. Betty attacked Montgomery with an axe, hitting her in the head and her toe. The two fought; Montgomery allegedly pushed Betty away and, with her back to her, “raised her ax with both hands and brought the blade down on the back of Betty’s head.” The fight continued. According to Bloom and Atkinson, Fason testified that at one point, Betty said “shhhhh” to Montgomery, which, the psychiatrist contended, resurfaced a memory from Montgomery’s childhood. According to Fason, there was a “connection” between a memory of Montgomery being shushed by her mother during a specific incident when she was a child, and being shushed by Betty.

Ultimately, it took the jury a little over three hours to reach a verdict and find Montgomery not guilty of Betty Gore’s murder, the agency reported. United Press International on October 30, 1980. Montgomery reportedly showed “no emotion” when the verdict was read. The judge, according to Atkinson and Bloom, had asked everyone in court, including the parties, to refrain from reacting in any way when the ruling was read aloud. Montgomery “fought back tears, though,” he reported. IPU“as she and her husband Pat were taken out of the Collin County courthouse under heavy guard after [el juez de distrito Tom Ryan] received a letter threatening his life.

According to The Dallas Morning News, Allan Gore eventually remarried and moved out. Candy Montgomery is also believed to have moved and, according to the newspaper, has been certified as a family counselor.

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