Authorities investigate double murder 2000 cold case

FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - A double murder that occurred nearly two decades ago was a gruesome discovery for the victims' children.

The mother, Wanda Evans, was stabbed to death in her trailer August 6, 2000 in Florence County. She was discovered that morning by her 8-year-old daughter as the 4-year-old twin boys slept in their bedroom just feet away, according to the current Florence County Investigator, Chad Collins.

The children said they couldn't recall any noises or sounds from the night before.

Florence County Coroner Keith Von Lutcken, who was the forensics investigator in this case, said the details still haunt him to this day, and the path of the investigation has frustrated him.

"There are so many rumors going around and you have to check into them, and as you're going in different directions I guess you could say while you're running down rumors and running down folks you know tied in with those rumors, the trail can actually be getting cold," said Lutcken.

Authorities say the suspect may have driven away in a black full-sized pick-up truck, and they know little else.

Authorities thought Evans' boyfriend, Paul Coates, was responsible for the crime.

However, several hours later, fishermen found Coates a few miles away near a bridge with bullets riddled through his body, Collins said. Authorities also didn't find a weapon near Coates, just his body.

The original investigators and detectives are looking for that person to come forward if they have valid information that can be corroborated that will provide them with the evidence that they need to make an arrest.

Investigators said Evans and Coats were in an on-again off-again relationship, and were no strangers to the law.  They also said they didn't deserve to have their lives end the way they did.

Contact the Florence County Sheriff's Office with any information. See if you can help catch a killer. You may be eligible for a cash reward.

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