Media Turns up the Volume on Western Iowa Cold Cases

On April 4, 2009, in Media, by Jody Ewing

I really have to give credit to Sioux City media (both print and broadcast) for the great jobs they’re doing with regular reports on area cold cases.

The Sioux City Journal, in addition to their regular coverage on the Wilma June Nissen case, recently launched a multimedia website dedicated to Nissen’s 30-year-old unsolved homicide. It’s nicely done and includes, in part, case history, photos, videos, a timeline, and also details Sheriff Blythe Bloemendaal’s long-standing commitment to solving Lyon County’s only cold case.

Then earlier this week, Sioux City’s KTIV-TV Channel 4 news reporter Melissa Lanzourakis produced an excellent two-part piece on the 1997 unsolved slaying of Ida Grove’s Connie Ruddy. The story featured an interview with Ruddy’s best friend — referred to only as “Jane” — who talked about the days leading up to Ruddy’s disappearance, how she made the discovery and her theories about her friend’s murder. Read the articles and view the videos for Part I here and Part II here.

KTIV has kept close tabs on the Ruddy case since Ida County Sheriff Wade Harriman announced in early February that authorities would reopen the case on Feb. 10, the 12-year anniversary of Ruddy’s disappearance. In 1999, the “missing persons” case became a homicide case when DNA tests proved a jaw bone found in a river near Denison, Iowa was Ruddy’s.

Siouxlanders can also tune in to KMEG 14 or KCAU-TV for cold case updates. And, as more viewers turn up the volume, officials continue to turn up the heat as they close in on cases never laid to rest.

So I say to Siouxland media: We’re reading, we’re watching, and we’re listening. Keep up the good work, and keep the stories coming.

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