The Desert IndependentTM
Serving Blythe and the Desert Regions of the Southwest Since 2001
1986 Cold Case Murder to be Featured on Investigation Discovery on June 4
June 2, 2019
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif – In 1986, Nancy Klinger dropped her children off with a babysitter, and never returned.
Klinger met with Larry T. Hite, who had presented himself to her as an investigator with the Sheriff's Department. She believed she would be posing as his wife as part of an investigation.
Nearly two years later, skeletal remains were found in a dirt field in Highland. Dental records confirmed the remains belonged to Klinger.
Hite was initially the lead suspect, but investigators were unable to link him to the death. Hite relocated to Arizona, where he was convicted of sexually assaulting two women. Upon his return to California, the investigation was reopened, and he ultimately confessed to murdering Nancy Klinger. Hite was prosecuted by San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney Denise Yoakum. In 2015, he was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to prison for 25 years to life.
While serving his prison sentence, Hite was killed by his cellmate Travis Smoot. Hite was found hogtied, impaled, with both ears punctured. The cause of death was strangulation. Smoot told officers that he tortured and killed Hite because Hite would not stop talking about a rape that he had committed but was never convicted of.
This case will be featured on Investigation Discovery's True Conviction on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at 10:00 PM, ET.
We encourage anyone with information on any unsolved crimes to contact their local law enforcement agency, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department or the San Bernardino District Attorney's Office at 909-382-3800.
Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call We-Tip (1-800-78-CRIME)
Please refer all comments to The Desert Independent's Facebook Page.