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Girlfriend Admits She Drugged, Chopped Up 300-pound Cowboy

September 2, 1996 GMT

PALO PINTO, Texas (AP) _ The mystery of how a likable 300-pound cowboy died eight months ago was solved when his girlfriend admitted she gave him a deadly dose of morphine, cut up his body and scattered it over four counties.

Helen Moore, 41, pleaded guilty Friday to murder in exchange for a life sentence.

Though Moore took out a $150,000 insurance policy on Casey Elliott weeks before he died, she denied in her confession that money was the motive. She offered no explanation for the slaying.

``I hope she dies in prison,″ said prosecutor Jerry Ray, noting she won’t be eligible for parole for at least 30 years.

Elliott had lived for five years with Moore and her two sons in Fort Belknap, a small community about 80 miles west of Fort Worth. Friends described him as a big friendly cowboy with a heart as big as his hat.

After drugging the 27-year-old Elliott Jan. 16, Moore said, she took her two sons to school and when she returned, he was dead.

Moore said she rolled Elliott’s body into a tarp, tied a rope around it and used a car to haul it outside and into a two-horse trailer. She then used a knife and saw to cut the body into eight pieces.

She said she then drove around and looked for rivers and low-lying areas in Young, Stephens, Palo Pinto and Erath counties to hide the remains.

Elliott’s torso was found Jan. 21 near a lake in a wooded area of Palo Pinto County. It wasn’t until late March that DNA tests confirmed the remains as Elliott’s. His head was discovered in Young County, on March 31, and one of his legs was found in Stephens County in May.