Texas man who tortured woman in his "house of horrors" is now a suspect in 2 cold cases

Jeffrey Allan Maxwell
Navarro County Jail
Jeffrey Allan Maxwell
Navarro County Jail

(CBS/AP) FORT WORTH, Texas - Jeffrey Allan Maxwell, the man being accused of kidnapping and torturing a woman for two weeks in his own "house of horrors," after she had repeatedly spurned his advances, is being investigated in two cold cases of missing women, including his ex-wife's disappearance, Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler says.

Maxwell, 58, is jailed in Parker County on charges of aggravated kidnapping and aggravated sexual assault after being arrested this past weekend in connection with the abduction of his former neighbor on March 1.

Authorities had been searching for the 62-year-old woman since her house had burned down two days after she was kidnapped. Investigators believe that the fire was set by Maxwell.

Maxwell's arrest has prompted police to take another look at the case of his ex-wife, who lived in Fort Worth and vanished without a trace in 1992.

Martha Martinez Maxwell first went missing in 1987, she was found beaten with her throat cut near Ardmore, Okla. She survived those injuries and Jeffrey Maxwell was charged with aggravated kidnapping in that case in 1987, but court records show the grand jury declined to indict him, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

The police also have decided to re-examine the case of a Parker County woman who has not been seen since her mobile home burned to the ground in 2000. Police say it is unclear if Maxwell knew the woman, but the case appears to have similarities to the recent case of the rescued woman whose house was set ablaze after she was abducted.

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