Anthony Allen Shore is a serial killer that is responsible for the slayings of four women. He operated from 1987 to 2000, and known as the "Tourniquet Killer" since he used a ligature with a either a toothbrush or bamboo stick to tighten or loosen the ligature to control them. The instrument was similar to a twitch, which is used by farmers to control horses.. He was born in North Dakota.
Maria Carmen Del Estrada was an illegal immigrant who came to the United States to have a better life. She was a small, petite woman, standing at a height of 5 foot 1 inch and weighing 104 pounds. She was only twenty one years old, and worked as a nanny with her best friend, Rosa. On April 16, 1992, Carmen's half naked body was found in back of a Dairy Queen. She had been found sexually assaulted.
Diana Rebollar, 9 years old, lived in the Heights area of Houston, at the front of a small duplex. One day, she headed out to the neighborhood store to buy a bag of sugar. Employees of the store saw her leaving the store safely, but she never returned home. She was found the next day behind a house that was known to be occupied by the homeless. One lead for police was given by a neighbor who described a van that frequented the area. She was connected to the Carmen Del Estrada case by the killer's method of operation, since a tourniquet was used as the murder weapon. Diana was murdered two years after Carmen.
Dana Sanchez was walking to her boyfriends house when Shore offered her a ride in his car. He made advances to her, but she told him that she had a boyfriend. She was never seen again. Seven days later an anonymous caller (Shore) led them to the highly decomposed body of Sanchez.
In 2000, detectives pulled Carmen Del Estrada's case from the cold files and tested DNA evidence from underneath Carmen's fingernails and received a full genetic profile.. Carmen's case grew cold, and would remain in the cold files for eight years. The profile was upload to Texas's DNA database, which contains all the DNA profiles of sexual offenders. Shore's DNA was in the database from a previous conviction of molesting his two daughters for which he was offered a plea bargain that resulted in probation. His DNA matched the DNA underneath Carmen's fingernails and he was arrested for her murder.
Eleven hours into his interrogation, Shore confessed to the murders of Carmen Del Estrada, Diana Rebollar and Dana Sanchez. He also confessed to the 1987 murder of fourteen year old Laurie Tremblay and the 1994 rape of a fourteen year old girl. Laurie Tremblay was walking to school when she was killed and dumped behind a Mexican restaurant. Detectives had no way of linking this killing to the other three murders, since Laurie was strangled with a ligature. When asked why he switch to a tourniquet, Shore replied, "because I hurt my finger while murdering Tremblay"
Despite Shore's confession of killing four people, and raping another, prosecutor Kelly Siegler decided to charge Shore for only Carmen Del Estrada's murder, since it contained the most forensic evidence. The jury found Shore guilty of capital murder and in the sentencing phase of the trial they learned that they had convicted a serial killer. During the sentencing phase, they put Shore's only surviving victim on the stand, who told a compelling story. Less than one hour later the jury sentenced Shore to death.
Anthony Allen Shore currently awaits execution on Texas's death row at Livingston, Texas. During his confession, Shore hinted that there where other murder victims, and he still remains the prime suspect in the I-45 serial murders.