A man was arrested Thursday in the 33-year-old Hollywood cold case murder of director Barry Crane, according to police.
Crane, who worked on shows like “The Incredible Hulk,” “Hawaii Five-0,” “Dallas” and “The Six Million Dollar Man,” was found dead in the garage of his Studio City, Calif., home in July 1985. He had been bludgeoned with a ceramic statue and strangled with a phone cord. He was naked and wrapped in bedsheets. His car was also stolen.
Authorities said they were finally able to match a fingerprint found on Crane’s car to a man named Edwin Hiatt last year. FBI investigators then used cigarette butts and a coffee cup from the parking lot of an auto repair shop where Hiatt worked in North Carolina to match the DNA to cigarette butts found in Crane’s stolen car, which was recovered shortly after Crane’s murder.
Detectives then flew to North Carolina to speak to Hiatt. "During the interview, Hiatt admitted to killing Barry Crane," a Los Angeles Police Department statement said.
In an interview, Hiatt told local station Charlotte's WSOC-TV that he had no memory of Crane or the alleged incident, but that “anything” could have happened because he was “big into drugs.”
Co-workers at Hiatt’s auto shop said he isn’t a violent man.
"He wouldn't hurt a flea," co-worker Dee Hall told the News Herald of Morganton. “This is something that supposedly happened 30 years ago. The man's changed. Christ has come in and he's become a new creature. If God's forgiven you, you're forgiven. That's it."
Investigators did not say anything about an alleged motive.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.