Hogan's Heroes killer of Bob Crane to be named

American actor Bob Crane (1928 - 1978) as Colonel Robert E Hogan in the American TV Comedy series 'Hogan's Heroes', circa 1968. Photo / Getty
American actor Bob Crane (1928 - 1978) as Colonel Robert E Hogan in the American TV Comedy series 'Hogan's Heroes', circa 1968. Photo / Getty

The identity of the person who murdered Hogan's Heroes star Bob Crane 38 years ago will be revealed on live TV on Monday.

Fox 10 Phoenix anchor John Hook began investigating the case in Arizona last year, and managed to convince the Maricopa County Attorney's Office to release enough blood samples from the murder weapon to conduct new DNA tests that were not available at the time.

Bob Crane as Col. Robert E. Hogan. Photo / Getty
Bob Crane as Col. Robert E. Hogan. Photo / Getty

Hook says he knows who the murderer is and will reveal it live on air on Monday at 9pm (1am AEDT).

Crane, who played Colonel Hogan from 1965-1971 on the hit show Hogan's Heroes, was found lying in a pool of blood inside his Scottsdale, Arizona, apartment on June 29, 1978, at the age of 49.

He had been bludgeoned to death with a camera tripod and had an electric cord wrapped around his neck.

Crane's friend John Carpenter was charged with murder 14 years after the crime when new evidence came to light.

Crane's son, Robert Crane, told the court that his father was about to end the friendship.

Bob Crane (1928-1978), John Banner (1910-1973), and Werner Klemperer (1920-2000) on set. Photo / Getty
Bob Crane (1928-1978), John Banner (1910-1973), and Werner Klemperer (1920-2000) on set. Photo / Getty

Robert Crane, who later went on to be comedian John Candy's assistant, said his father had called Carpenter that night to end it.

"My dad had told me that Carpenter was becoming 'a pain in the a**', and as part of his changes he was going to end his relationship with him. The police figured that Carpenter, who was bisexual, was perhaps in love with my dad and reacted to this information like a spurned lover," Robert Crane wrote in his book. "With today's forensics the case would likely have been solved in less than 24 hours, and it probably would have been 'Turn out the lights, the party's over' for John Henry Carpenter."

Videotapes revealed that Crane and Carpenter had at least once had sex with the same woman simultaneously.

Carpenter's long-estranged son, John Merrill, described his father in court as having "had a violent problem in the past and he called it tunnel vision".

Mr Merrill told the courtroom that the "tunnel vision" would occur when his father got into inflamed arguments with other men. "He told me he took karate classes to gain self-control," Mr Merrill said.

Carpenter, who was found not guilty, died in 1998. Crane was married to Anne Terzian from 1949-1970 and had four children.

He then married his Hogan's Heroes co-star Sigrid Valdis, who played Hilda, in 1970 with whom he had a child.

American actor Bob Crane and his second wife, actor Sigrid Valdis, smiling on their wedding day. Photo / Getty
American actor Bob Crane and his second wife, actor Sigrid Valdis, smiling on their wedding day. Photo / Getty

- news.com.au

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