Local News

NC Wanted: Family haunted by woman's murder more than 35 years later

Posted January 29, 2011
Updated February 7, 2015

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— More than 35 years without answers, Michael Burgess said he's still haunted daily by the painful memories of his mother's murder.

Alice Burgess left the house in Vance County that she shared with her three young children the Tuesday after Thanksgiving in 1977. She was going to meet a friend at a local bar.

"She appeared to have a good time," said Teresa West of the State Bureau of Investigation. "She decided to leave around midnight, and another friend asked if Alice Burgess would drop her at her car. She agreed to do that."

She was never heard from again.

A week later, her car was found abandoned on the outskirts of town, in a place known as Lover's Lane. Burgess' body was in the trunk.

Investigators said she was beaten to death with the tire jack from her car.

Questions linger in 1977 Vance County murder Questions linger in 1977 Vance County murder

"It was a particularly gruesome murder," said former investigator Joe Momier. "She had a number of wounds that went down even through the skull. I mean, you could tell that (she was) brutally beaten to death."

Momier said he believes Burgess had a sexual encounter with someone at the scene, and was killed shortly afterwards.

Burgess' sister, Lou Anderson, still vividly remembers the day she heard what had happened.

"I was at home and my mother called me. I went up to Mom's and she told me they had found Alice's body," Anderson said.

Investigators made an arrest in this case three decades ago, but that person was acquitted at trial.

Anyone with information about the murder of Alice Burgess can call NC Wanted's tipline at 1-866-439-2683 or submit a tip online.

1 Comment

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • shortcake53 Jan 31, 2011

    What a horrible burden to carry around for 33 years, not knowing what happened to your mom. I hope someone comes forward with information.