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H2H S.5 E.214 William Talbott II | Justice Delayed

November 19, 1987: A Tragic Trip Begins

On a seemingly ordinary November day in 1987, young Canadian couple Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg embarked on a journey to Seattle, Washington. Tasked with picking up furnace parts for Jay’s father, they decided to make a fun outing of the errand. Crossing the border from British Columbia into the United States, they had no idea that this trip would be their last.

The Disappearance

When Jay and Tanya failed to return home on time, concern quickly grew among their families. Days turned into a nightmare when Tanya’s lifeless body was discovered in a ditch near Alger, Washington. She had been sexually assaulted and shot. Just two days later, Jay’s body was found 60 miles away under a bridge in Snoqualmie, strangled with a pack of cigarettes shoved down his throat. The gruesome discoveries shattered the lives of their loved ones and the broader community, initiating a lengthy and challenging investigation.

The Cold Case

Despite persistent efforts, the investigation faced numerous challenges, leaving detectives with few leads and no clear suspects. The case went cold, becoming one of the many unsolved mysteries haunting the Pacific Northwest. Jay and Tanya's families, however, never gave up hope, maintaining their quest for justice for over three decades.

The Breakthrough

In 2018, advancements in DNA technology brought a breakthrough in the cold case. Investigators utilized genetic genealogy to trace DNA evidence left at the crime scenes to a distant relative of the suspect. This innovative technique led them to William Earl Talbott II, a truck driver from Washington. It was the suspect’s second cousin who had unknowingly provided the crucial link that broke open the case.

The Arrest and Trial

William Earl Talbott II was arrested and charged with the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg. The trial, held in 2019, presented compelling evidence connecting Talbott to the crime scenes, including the DNA match and testimonies about his movements around the time of the murders. In June 2019, a jury found Talbott guilty, providing a long-awaited sense of justice and closure for the victims' families.

Justice Delayed but Not Denied

The story of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg serves as a poignant reminder of the devastating impact of violent crime and the enduring quest for justice. Their families’ perseverance, coupled with modern forensic science, ultimately brought a resolution to a case that had haunted the community for over three decades.

Hitched 2 Homicide

Join us on Hitched 2 Homicide as we delve deeper into the chilling details of this case, exploring the lives cut tragically short and the relentless pursuit of justice that finally prevailed. This is more than a story of crime; it’s a journey into the lives of two young people that ended too soon, and the man who couldn't escape his crime.

Sources used for this podcast:

1. [Murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg - Wikipedia](

2. [The disappearance of Tanya Van Cuylenborg and Jay Cook - CBS News](

3. [Killer of Tanya Van Cuylenborg and Jay Cook gets 2 life sentences - CBC](

4. [Killer eludes police for 31 years – how did one woman find him in - CBS News](

5. [US high court reinstates guilty verdicts in 1987 murders of B.C. couple - Abby News](

6. [William Earl Talbott II appealed - Washington State Courts](

8. [Man guilty of 1987 murders solved with genetic genealogy - HeraldNet](

9. [Tanya Van Cuylenborg and Jay Cook Double Murder - Eve Lazarus](

10. [How a childhood Halloween photo helped a woman uncover a killer - CBS News](

11. [Unsolved Mysteries Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuyleborg]



Clips and photos used in YouTube video:

Looney Tunes Golden Collection V2 S1 E8 Hare Conditioned | Warner Home Video

Bill Bill Vol 1 | 2003 | MiramaxMiramax Home Entertainment

Groundhog Day | 1993 | Columbia Pictures

Steven Universe Kiki’s Pizza Delivery Service | 2023 | S3 E13 | Studio  Ghibli

The Simpsons Bart Vs Australia |  S6 E 16 | FOX

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia |  2005 |  S13 E2 |  The Gang Escapes | 3 Arts Entertainment/ RCG Productions’20th CenturyFox / FXP

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off | 1986 | Paramount PicturesUnited International Pictures

Bohemian Rapsody | 2018 | 20th Century Studios

Revenge of the Nerds | 1984 | 20th Century Studios





❤️ Bless Your Heart Sources




All information contained in this video presentation is provided for entertainment purposes only. The authors leave any and all conclusions to individual members of the audience. The author offers no statements of fact beyond those available through diligent private research or through information freely available in the public record. To the extent that pending or settled criminal matters or crime or possible crimes, are discussed in this video presentation. All parties or defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law. To the extent that any pending or settle civil matters are discussed in this video presentation, all parties or defendants are presumed not liable unless proven liable in a court of law. Copyright for material incorporated and presented under Fair Use is retained by the original author or copyright holder where applicable. Our cases are researched using open source and archive materials, and the subjects are real crimes and people. We strive to produce each episode with respect to the victims, their families and loved ones. At Hitched 2 Homicide we are committed to always discussing how victims lived, and not just how they died.


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