Content warning: This article contains discussion of murder that some may find upsetting. Reader discretion is advised.
HBO Max's latest chilling crime series, Love and Death, is based on true events that occurred in the 1980s when Candace "Candy" Montgomery was accused of killing Betty Gore by striking her with an ax 41 times. According to a report by Newsweek, forensic experts found that 40 of the blows were made while Betty's heart was still beating. If you just started watching the new show, you may be wondering about Candy's whereabouts today and if she's even still alive. Ahead, find everything we know about Candy Montgomery's criminal trial and her current whereabouts.
The Wylie, Texas natives were once friends who were bonded by their faith at church upon meeting in 1977. Over the years, their relationship grew complicated when Candy became the mistress of Betty's husband, Allan, and ultimately fell in love with him. On June 13, 1980, Candy went to Allan and Betty's house to pick up a swimsuit for their eldest daughter, who slept over at the Montgomery house the night before. Per Den of Geek, Betty confronted Candy about her affair with Allan that same day, and that may be what prompted Candy to commit her crime of passion. Allan wasn't in the house during the attack as he was on a business trip.
When Betty's body was found, police started investigating and interrogated Candy, who they traced through fingerprints in the Gores' home. The Dallas Morning News reports that Candy admitted to the crime, but claimed it was self-defense when she told authorities that Betty initially attacked her with an ax. Candy was arrested and put on a $100,000 bond before going on trial, per a report by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Leading up to her trial in October 1980, Candy took a polygraph lie detector test and met with psychiatrists for a hypnosis session to prove she had no intentions of murdering Betty. Per Den of Geek, Candy's lawyer Don Crowder had a psychiatrist testify that she had a "dissociative reaction" that led her to attack Betty with an ax in self-defense. On October 29, 1980, a jury of three men and nine women acquitted Candy Montgomery of the murder of Betty Gore after eight days of trial and she was found not guilty.
This terrifying murder inspired not one, but two limited miniseries, and the latest one is HBO Max's Love and Death starring Elizabeth Olsen as Candy and Jesse Plemons as Allan. Read on to find out where Candy Montgomery is now.
Is Candy Montgomery alive?
Now 72, Candy is still alive and resides in Georgia and became certified as a family counselor, according to The Dallas Morning News.
Where is Candy Montgomery now?
Per The Dallas Morning News, Candy said she wanted "to get all this behind me and be normal again" following her trial in October 1980. The outlet reports that in 2000, she declined to talk to a News reporter, saying, "I'm telling you in big bold letters I'm not interested."
In 2022, Hulu released Candy, a miniseries inspired by Candy's criminal trial starring Jessica Biel. The actress told Entertainment Weekly that she attempted to contact the real Candy to prepare for her role ahead of the series, who said she was "not interested."
Jessica opened up about how she approached the role, telling Variety, "I wanted to create this person that you really, really were conflicted about. You’re with her. You’re with her and then, wait a minute, I’m not sure if I’m with her."
Love and Death's Elizabeth Olsen told Vanity Fair that she thought about what might have prompted Candy to act out. "This is about women and men in this time period—they did everything right. They got married at 20, had kids. [Candy’s husband] Pat was a wonderful supporter and scientist. They moved to the suburbs. They built their dream house," Elizabeth said. "Then why do you feel so profoundly empty inside? Why is there a hole in your heart and psyche a mile wide? She makes a horrible choice [about] how to fill that void."
The real Candy is still alive and was reportedly last working as a family counselor and therapist in Georgia. She has not spoken publicly about the '80s events upon the release of both true crime miniseries.
Sam is an assistant editor at Seventeen, covering pop culture, celebrity news, health, and beauty. When she isn't draping her cheeks in blush, you can probably find her live-tweeting awards shows or making SwiftToks.