The Shocking True Story of Candy

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The Shocking True Story of Candy

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Cassondra Feltus
The shocking true story of "Candy" will have you skeptical of your neighbors. For this video, we'll be looking at the unbelievable events that inspired Hulu's 2022 miniseries, “Candy.” Our video includes the affair, the investigation, in the media, and more!
Transcript

The Shocking True Story of Candy


Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re discussing The Shocking True Story of Candy.

For this video, we’ll be looking at the unbelievable events that inspired Hulu’s 2022 miniseries, “Candy.”

Did you watch “Candy”? What did you think? Tell us in the comments below.

Life in Small Town Wylie, Texas

In the mid-1970s, Betty and Allan Gore moved from the suburbs of Dallas to Collin County, Texas, where Betty had found a job as an elementary school teacher in the small town of Wylie. At the time, they had one daughter. Pat and Candace “Candy” Montgomery soon moved to town with their two children. Both the Gores and Montgomerys attended the First United Methodist Church of Lucas where they sang in the choir and often helped organize other church events. Their daughters were also friends and frequently had sleepovers at each other’s houses.

The Affair


Though her life may have seemed perfect on the outside, Candy was struggling with boredom and overall dissatisfaction. She longed for excitement, particularly in the bedroom, and started considering having an affair with someone.

Candy and Allan both played for the church’s volleyball team, and one night, the two collided on the court while going for the ball. Not long after, she approached him after choir practice, bluntly telling him that she found him attractive. Neither of them wanted to hurt their respective partners or become emotionally attached to each other. This arrangement was strictly physical, and very well-planned. Candy and Allan talked over the phone and in person to figure out the logistics of the affair — where, when, and how often.

The two officially began their tryst on December 12, 1978, at the Continental Inn near Allan’s office in Richardson. Later that month, they’d get together again at the Como Motel, which became their regular rendezvous spot every other week. By February 1979, Candy realized she developed feelings for Allan. She attempted to end the affair, but Allan talked her out of it.

In early June, Allan told Candy they needed to take a break so he could focus on Betty. Candy agreed, and even threw Betty a surprise baby shower later that month. Allan and Betty became closer when their daughter Bethany was born in early July. And when he resumed his arrangement with Candy in late July, he actually felt guilty. He wanted to break things off with Candy now their affair was affecting his marriage. After seeing each other a few more times, and a church-sanctioned marriage counseling “experience” for Allan and Betty, Candy and Allan ended things between them.

The Murder of Betty Gore


On June 13, 1980, Allan Gore left for a business trip to St. Paul, Minnesota. Betty always hated to be left alone and was upset when her husband left. Allan called her from the Dallas airport before boarding his plane, but she didn’t answer. That evening, he arrived at the hotel in St. Paul, and continued to call, and soon began to worry something was wrong. He then called his neighbor, Richard Parker, asking him to go check on her as well as Candy, who was babysitting the Gores’ daughter, Alisa.

He also enlisted the help of another neighbor, Jerry McMahan, who then called Lester Gayler to go over to the house with him. The three men realized the front door was unlocked and cautiously entered, calling out for Betty. One of them saw blood on the bathroom floor, then heard the wailing of the Gore’s infant daughter in her crib. Lester was the first to spot the massive amount of blood on the floor of the utility room, while Jerry assumed she’d taken her own life with a gun after getting a glimpse.

It was later determined that Betty was hit with an ax dozens of times, with a majority of those blows to the head. The murder weapon was left at the scene, along with bloody fingerprints and a small footprint. The ax-wielding killer attempted to clean up in the bathroom and left hair in the shower drain. Investigators also found a newspaper open to an article on Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining,” which was released May 23rd. Equally eerie, the first installment in the “Friday the 13th” franchise was also just released on May 9th and Betty’s death landed on Friday the 13th.

The Investigation


Allan Gore was in shock when he’d heard Betty had taken her own life, but he was even more so after it was determined she’d been murdered with an ax. But investigators, along with Betty’s family, were allegedly suspicious that Allan wasn’t more distraught. The quaint town of Wylie never suspected anyone in their community could commit such a heinous act and feared that an ax-wielding maniac was on the loose. But law enforcement and the medical examiner believed the murder to be more intimate; the killer was more likely someone she knew.

On the morning Betty was killed, one of Alisa’s friends in the neighborhood reportedly knocked on the door of the Gores’ house but didn’t receive a reply. The girl told police that she saw Mrs. Montgomery leave their residence around 11a.m. Since Candy seemed to be the last person to see Betty alive, she was brought in for questioning on June 15.

After Betty’s funeral on June 16, Allan was interviewed by investigators and his alibi was confirmed. The next day, he called to confess he’d had an affair with one of their church friends — Candy Montgomery — that ended about seven months prior. That’s when investigators ran Candy’s prints and found that they matched the ones found at the crime scene. And on June 27, Candy was arrested and charged with Betty’s murder.

The Trial of Candace Montgomery


By the time she was released on bond, Candy had hired lawyer and church friend Don Crowder, even though he wasn’t a criminal attorney. This was his first criminal trial, but he accepted the challenge. The trial began in October 1980, and Crowder stunned the courtroom with his client’s plea of self-defense.

Before the trial, Crowder had his client see Dr. Fred Fason in Houston, who hypnotized Candy and reportedly uncovered repressed childhood trauma involving her mother. On the witness stand, Candy recounted (her version of) the horrific events of June 13. She allegedly went to pick up Alisa’s swimsuit, and Betty unexpectedly confronted her about the past affair with Allan. Candy admitted to it but assured her that it was over. But Betty then retrieved an ax, and when Candy approached her, she was shoved into the utility room. As the women wrestled over control of the weapon, Betty shushed Candy, triggering her to have a “dissociative reaction.” In this adrenaline-fueled state, she brought the ax down a number of times until she’d exhausted all of her strength.

One of the most chilling aspects of the case is that Candy cleaned up, changed clothes, and went about her day. She picked up the kids from Bible school, took Alisa to her swim lessons, and went to see “The Empire Strikes Back” in movie theatres. She continued to cover up her crime by destroying the sandals she wore that day.

Even more shocking than the self-defense plea was the jury’s verdict — not guilty.

In the Media


A brutal ax murder in the suburbs of Texas is unthinkable, especially when it’s committed by a housewife and a pillar of the community. The story already sounds like a horror film and it’s no surprise that it’s been retold in movies, books, and television.

In 1990, CBS aired the television movie “A Killing in a Small Town” based on the 1984 non-fiction book “Evidence of Love: A True Story of Passion and Death in the Suburbs” by John Bloom and Jim Atkinson.

More than 30 years later, Hulu premiered “Candy,” starring Jessica Biel as the titular character.
The miniseries follows her version of events, mostly from her point of view.

The upcoming HBO limited series “Love and Death” is based on articles by Atkinson and Bloom written for Texas Monthly, as well as their book. Elizabeth Olsen will play Candy alongside Texas native Jesse Plemons as Allan Gore, and Lily Rabe as Betty Gore. Production on the series wrapped in April 2022.
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