The 1966 Delano case: solved

Everett Delano/New Hampshire Dept. of Justice Office of the Attorney General website

Everett Delano/New Hampshire Dept. of Justice Office of the Attorney General website

I just received an email from the Delano Family with news and links to the solution in this case. Police found out who killed Everett “Red” Nelson Delano.

Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald and New Hampshire State Police Colonel Christopher J. Wagner, announce that the New Hampshire Cold Case Unit has solved the 1966 Homicide of Everett Delano.

Mr. Delano (age 49) was fatally shot during a robbery of Sanborn’s Garage in Andover, New Hampshire on September 1, 1966.

The investigation has determined that Mr. Thomas Cass, now deceased, of Orleans, Vermont, shot and killed Mr. Delano in 1966, while engaged in a robbery of Sanborn’s Garage.

The attached report summarizes the initial investigation into Mr. Delano’s murder and the re-investigation of the case by the New Hampshire Cold Case Unit beginning in 2013.

As a result of Mr. Cass’s death, no criminal charges will be brought and the case will be closed.”

The Delano Case

Around 10am on Sept 1, 1966 Everett “Red” Nelson Delano (49) was found unconscious inside the office of Sanborn’s Garage, Andover, New Hampshire. He died in the hospital. Cause of death: three gunshot wounds.

The trajectory of two of the gunshot wounds indicated that Mr. Delano was in an upright position when he was shot. The third gunshot wound had evidence of gun powder residue, which is indicative of close contact with the weapon. The trajectory of this wound was consistent with Mr. Delano being shot at close range when he was on the ground.”

The 1966 investigation did not solve this crime. However, in 2013 the New Hampshire Cold Case Unit (CCU) re-opened the investigation. CCU found evidence that Mr. Thomas Cass shot and killed Delano during a robbery of the garage. Cass committed suicide Feb 24, 2014. He was 67 years old.

The Evidence

In 1966, there were no leads, no suspects, and the murder weapon was never found.

I mentioned in my previous posts that I wasn’t clear how much money was stolen. Now we know: between $75-$100 cash but the cash box with $500 that was hidden underneath the counter was untouched. In the cash register drawer police found a hair that was preserved.

According to witnesses the water in the bathroom sink next to the office was running. Police found fingerprints on the cold water faucet and soap dispenser. “Several latent prints were recovered and preserved for forensic examination. On September 7, 1966, photographs of these fingerprints were sent to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) for further examination.”

The latent fingerprints that were found had never been entered into the FBI’s Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS). When it was entered into the database, a match popped up.

Cass had an extensive record and in the PDF you can read more details about his past, his time in prison, the CCU interviews, and the actions Cass took after he was interviewed.

Conclusion

Since Mr. Cass is deceased, and some of the evidence against him is the inference of guilt from his suicide, this case cannot be resolved with criminal charges. In lieu of criminal charges, this case will now be administratively closed and resolved without charges. This previously unsolved homicide is now solved.”

My gratitude goes to the Delano family who stayed in touch and kept me posted. My deepest sympathy for your loss and I wish you all nothing but the best.

Gratitude too for the CCU unit for not giving up on an old, unsolved case.

Rest in peace, Everett “Red” Nelson Delano.