LIC nurse charged in 1984 Louisiana cold-case murder


| aaltman@queenscourier.com |

Photo via Facebook
Photo via Facebook

A cold case is heating up.

A Long Island City nurse and former exotic dancer was arrested in connection with the nearly three-decade-old murder of a Baton Rouge, Louisiana businessman. Leila Mulla, 47, was arrested and charged with the crime by New York City police last week. She presently awaits arraignment and faces extradition back to Louisiana, where a warrant has been issued for her arrestarr, charging Mulla with second-degree murder, criminal conspiracy and simple robbery.

According to investigators, the victim, Gary Kergan, 29, was last seen in 1984 with Mulla — who was then working as an exotic dancer — leaving a nightclub in Baton Rouge. Kergan’s abandoned vehicle was later discovered by Louisiana police in Metairie, Louisiana with what appeared to be blood spattered in the trunk. However according to Baton Rouge police, authorities were unable to determine at that time if the blood belonged to the victim.

When detectives searched the apartment Mulla shared with her boyfriend — who is now her co-defendant in the case — they allegedly found evidence of a violent struggle.

Mulla’s former boyfriend and co-defendant, Ronald Dalton Dunnagan, 64, of Bossier City, Louisiana, was also arrested and charged with criminal conspiracy, simple robbery and first degree murder, according to Baton Rouge police.

Mulla and Dunnagan were arrested in December of 1984 and charged in connection with Kergan’s death, however the Louisiana DA at the time declined to prosecute due to lack of evidence and both suspects were released.

While Kergan’s body has not yet been retrieved, courts declared him legally dead in 1986.

The Queens DA said cold case detectives in Louisiana recently tested the blood left in the trunk of the victim’s car, leading them to connect the newly obtained evidence to the previously targeted suspects.

Mulla’s Facebook timeline is filled with links to stories of overcoming struggle and the benefits to maintaining a positive outlook.

“Leila Mulla is known for her optimistic outlook in life, which is evident in her beliefs,” reads her “About” section on the social networking site. “For one, she believes that all people are indebted to God not only for the physical gifts that they receive, but most importantly for the greatest gift of all — life.”