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On September 27, 1987, Mary Ann Green was found stabbed to death in her Oskaloosa, Iowa, mobile home, located in the Spring Creek Mobile Park on Highway 23 South in Mahaska County. Mary Ann’s murder fell under the jurisdiction of the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office, whose solid investigative skills quickly led to the arrest of Green’s stepson, Richard Lee Green, and his acquaintance, David Kelly Yant.
Richard Green and David Yant were charged with first-degree murder in Mary Ann’s death. Their first trial in Mahaska County resulted in a hung jury. The second trial, held in Polk County, ended with a hopelessly deadlocked jury. In the third and final trial, a Washington County District Court jury acquitted the two men on March 2, 1989.
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* Those familiar with the criminal justice system understand the law’s complexities and that an acquittal does not necessarily mean an unknown killer remains at large. In any murder trial, all known evidence may not be made available to jurors for specific legal reasons, and jurors also reach conclusions based on lawyering strategies.
Iowa Cold Cases contacted both the Oskaloosa Police Department and the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office to inquire as to the status of Mary Ann Green’s homicide, and received prompt responses from both law enforcement agencies. According to Mahaska County Sheriff Paul R. DeGeest, the Mary Green murder is by “lawful terms” unsolved, though there is no investigation being done and there will be no further investigation.
Mary Ann Green was buried in Forest Cemetery in Oskaloosa, Mahaska County.