Skip to main content

Mysterious woman ‘with long blonde hair’ wanted for questioning in Florida cold case

Kenneth Ray Miller, a man implicated in Robert Hecht's murder. (Images: Charlotte County Sheriff's Office)

Kenneth Ray Miller, a man implicated in Robert Hecht’s murder. (Images: Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office)

Cold case detectives with the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office are looking for a woman with “long blonde hair” who could help them solve a three-decades old murder investigation.

In November of 1988, 58-year-old retired army officer Robert Hecht was murdered. Hecht was originally from New York but lived in Southwest Florida. Deputies said he was last spotted On Saturday, Nov. 26 at a bar in Punta Gorda with a man named “Ray.”

At the bar, Ray told people he was from Tennessee and Kentucky, and bar patrons told investigators he spoke with a southern accent.

On Sunday morning, Hecht received a phone call from his sister who was out of state. Detectives said the siblings spoke every week on Sunday mornings — but this Sunday — Hecht didn’t answer the phone and never called her back.

Hecht was later found dead inside his Punta Gorda home. Detectives said it was “clear” he was a victim of a murder.

Robert Hecht’s car was found outside of a grocery store in Lenoir, North Carolina (Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office).

Monday morning, between 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m., Hecht’s brand new 1989 Lincoln town car was spotted hundreds of miles away in Lenoir, North Carolina, near a local grocery store called Lowell’s Food Market. Witnesses said the driver exiting the car and entering the store looked just like Ray. A woman with long blonde hair was in the passenger seat.

A few days later — on Thursday — Lenoir police discovered Hecht’s car parked nearby on Main Street, abandoned, and it appeared to have been parked in the same spot for several days.

The victim’s car was abandoned in North Carolina (Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office).

In 2022, Charlotte County cold case detectives determined “Ray” was really Kenneth Ray Miller. He was born in Kentucky but lived in Kingsport, Tennessee. Investigators determined there was a direct connection between Miller, the Hecht’s home and his stolen car.

Kenneth Ray Miller (Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office)

Unfortunately for detectives, Miller died in 2007 when he was in his mid-50s.

To close this cold case and ultimately get closure for Hecht’s family, detectives want to find and speak to with woman with the blonde hair.

“Detectives strongly believe that this female can assist in this murder investigation, and they have no reason to believe that this female is involved in the murder,” investigators said in a press release.

Detectives believe the woman could also have ties to Kingsport.

Kenneth Ray Miller (Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office).

“I have no doubt in my mind that this case will be be closed with this dedicated team of detectives leading the charge,” Charlotte County Sheriff Bill Prummell said. “With nearly a decade and a half of experience between the three, our agency is lucky to have Kurt Mehl, Mike Vogel, and Mike Gandy looking out for our community and the families connected to these cold cases.”

Investigators hope they’ll be able to question the woman with the long blonde hair so they can determine why Hecht’s car was driven and ditched in North Carolina — and why the retired army officer was killed.

More Law&Crime Coverage: Man convicted for murdering ex-girlfriend’s young daughter and trying to make it look like suicide

To “preserve the integrity of the investigation,” detectives are not releasing the cause of death.

If you have any information about this case, you’re asked to the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office.

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]

Filed Under:

Follow Law&Crime: