Details of Disappearance Carolyn was last seen in Alvin, Texas sometime in late September 1991. She has never been heard from again.
Carolyn's sixth husband was Roy Allen Bernard Sr.; a photo of him is posted with this case summary. He was sixteen years older than she was.
They lived together in Quinlan, Texas. Their relationship was troubled and at one point Carolyn filed charges against Roy for criminal mischief. The couple reconciled, and a month after his release from jail they purchased a lake house together.
In July 1989, Roy went to visit his mother in Oklahoma. He was hiding some of his belongings with his mother to keep them away from Carolyn. He told his mother and sister that he and Carolyn weren't getting along. The last time they saw him was on July 5; he was never heard from again. His 1980 Fiat Strata with Oklahoma license plates disappeared with him.
On July 7, Carolyn withdrew over $2,500 from Roy's retirement account. On July 10, his daughter called the police from Louisiana to report him missing, but law enforcement would not accept a missing persons report over the phone. Roy's son, Roy Bernard Jr., went to speak to his stepmother on August 7 and asked where his father was.
Carolyn appeared nervous and told Roy Jr. that Roy had gone to Israel on a "secret mission." Roy Jr. didn't believe her and reported his father missing the next day. After he filed the report he checked Roy and Carolyn's lake house and found his father's Fiat parked there.
In the aftermath of Roy's disappearance, Carolyn wrote checks on his bank account, sold his pickup truck and motor home, and made her fourth husband trustee of their lake house.
Three days later, Carolyn and another man, Gerald Luther Long, picked up Roy's tools and final paycheck from his job, which had terminated him for nonattendance after his disappearance. Six days later she withdrew another $2,300 from Roy's retirement account and closed the account.
With Gerald's help, Carolyn transferred everything Roy owned to either her own name or another person's. A photo of Gerald is posted with this case summary. He and Carolyn moved in together, but they fought frequently and kept separating and reconciling.
Carolyn complained that Gerald was using marijuana, drank frequently and spent time with other women. Gerald was cooperating with the police about Roy's disappearance, providing them with evidence that implicated Carolyn.
In February 1991, Gerald bought a house in then 200 block of McLemore Street in Alvin, Texas. Carolyn moved in with him there. Over the next few months, Gerald was arrested for domestic violence against Carolyn. She left him and went to stay with relatives in Wichita, Kansas for a time before moving back in with her fourth husband, but eventually she and Gerald reconciled again and they married in June.
In August, Carolyn went to the police and said Gerald was a drug dealer and she'd found cocaine in their home. She was registered as an informant with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and had a meeting with federal officers about Gerald. Late that month, Gerald was arrested for abusing Carolyn again. She went to the Brazoria County Women's Shelter and stayed for several days.
On September 5, Carolyn checked out of the shelter and called her family in Kansas to say she was going there, but first would be stopping by her and Gerald's house to collect her belongings. Neighbors saw her with Gerald the next day.
On September 8, Carolyn spoke to her brother in Colorado on the phone and he asked her to meet him in Denver for a gem show. She told him she was still at Gerald's and wanted to leave but was afraid to.
The next day, Gerald took Carolyn to University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston and Carolyn spoke to a counselor and said Gerald wanted to commit her to the hospital. She told the counselor she'd been a victim of his physical, verbal and sexual abuse for a long time. The counselor suggested they separate.
On September 10, Carolyn gave Gerald power of attorney to sell her truck, something her friends say is very uncharacteristic of her behavior. She was very attached to her truck and once told her friends, "If you ever see Gerald driving my truck, I'm dead."
Carolyn kept a UTMB appointment in Galveston September 13. She had a follow-up appointment scheduled for September 30, but missed it. A few days later, Gerald claimed she had left to go to Wichita. A change-of-address card arrived at the Wichita post office listing Carolyn's new address as her mother's home in the 2500 block of Victoria Street in Wichita, but she never arrived there.
Carolyn's brother reported her missing on October 1. By this time, Gerald had already invited another woman to live with him. The woman later said she noticed some oddly shaped meat packages in Gerald's freezer and he told her not to touch them because they were "bad." She also said that although Gerald told her Carolyn had moved, she had left all her belongings behind at his house.
Gerald's girlfriend passed a polygraph and police believe her statements are true. Authorities located another witness who saw the same strange meat packages. One neighbor reported seeing Gerald dragging a freezer to his truck in the middle of the night, driving away and not returning for two days. Another neighbor saw him digging in the yard, something he'd never done before.
In 1995, the police got a warrant to search Gerald's home. He had moved out six months before and was renting it out. The new tenants had removed the old carpet and replaced it with tile, because the carpet had a large stain on it. Police sprayed the home's interior with Luminol, a chemical designed to detect blood traces, and found what they believe was a pool of blood in the hallway leading to the backyard.
Cadaver dogs indicated the scent of human remains at a spot in the yard where a shed had been, and when investigators dug it up they found some carpet fibers but nothing else. They think a body might have once been at that spot, however.
Authorities determined Gerald was able to steal most of Carolyn's property after her disappearance by forging her name on notary documents. Carolyn's mother got a postcard after her disappearance that was supposedly from Carolyn and said she was fine and working out some problems, but handwriting experts determined it was probably Gerald who wrote the card.
Gerald remarried after Carolyn's disappearance and moved to a trailer outside of Alvin. He died of natural causes in 2001. He remains the prime suspect in Carolyn's disappearance.
Authorities believe Carolyn was in some way involved in Roy's disappearance, but he has never been located.
- Alvin Police Department
Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated December 29, 2015; details of disappearance updated.