Local Helps Break 39-Year-Old Murder Case

Schulenburg native Jeff Gabler, who works as a cold case detective for the Austin Police Department, recently cracked open a 39-year-old murder case.

Last week a Travis County Grand Jury indicted 64-year-old Michael Galvan for the 1979 murder of Debra Reiding.

“It feels good, but we still have a long way to go,” Gabler said in an interview with the Record last Friday. Such cases are exceedingly difficult to solve. This one was Gabler’s first cold case investigation that led to an indictment.

Galvan is accused of sexually assaulting and then strangling Reiding to death inside her Austin apartment in January 1979. She was a newlywed and had recently moved to Austin at the time. Gabler said Reiding’s husband worked on a farm in Montana. The couple came to work in Austin for a few months during the winter of that year. Gabler said Galvan and Reiding worked together at a restaurant near her apartment. Previous investigators never ruled him out as a suspect.


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