Pottawattamie County in Iowa

Pottawattamie County in Iowa

Cold Cases in Pottawattamie County, Iowa

*Please Note: The cases listed below are within Pottawattamie County but may fall under a city police department’s jurisdiction. They are included here for cross-reference purposes. More specific information may be found on each victim’s individual page.


City Bakery Building in Council Bluffs

City Bakery Building in Council Bluffs

James Clark Nicoll
52 YOA
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
March 17, 1885

James Clark Nicoll, a 52-year-old baker from Perth, Scotland, who emigrated to Council Bluffs, Iowa with his wife and five children in 1871, was found dead Tuesday morning, March 17, 1885, lying frozen in about 15 inches of water in a Tenth Avenue Council Bluffs ditch that led into Indian Creek.

George MassourisGeorge Massouris

George James Massouris
30 YOA
Orchard Road & Highway 6
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
November 18, 1950

On Saturday night, November 18, 1950, part-time taxicab driver George Massouris, 30, was shot three times at the base of his skull with a .22 caliber automatic pistol and then dumped in a ditch off the old Orchard Road two miles east of Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Frank J. Eckels
73 YOA
Oakland Motel and Café
Oakland, IA
Pottawattamie County
December 3, 1958

Frank J. Eckels, 73, was shot and wounded during a holdup at his motel and café in Oakland, Iowa, on Wednesday, Dec. 3, 1958. Eckels died Saturday, Dec. 6, at a Council Bluffs hospital.

Gloria SlumpGloria Slump

Gloria Fay Slump
24 YOA
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case # 67-00368
March 3, 1967

On March 6, 1967, the body of Gloria Fay Slump was found under a railroad trestle located three miles south of Council Bluffs, Iowa. The deeply religious Omaha, Neb., brokerage house worker had been beaten, stabbed 14 times in the throat with a dull knife or an instrument similar to a beer can opener, and left under the trestle to bleed to death.

Joe Junior Floyd
42 YOA
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case # D67-18
July 1, 1967

On July 1, 1967, Council Bluffs Police were called to 10th Street and 10th Avenue to investigate a report of a man lying in the water. There, they discovered Joe Junior Floyd, 42, who had been shot by a small caliber handgun.

John L. StephensJohn L. Stephens
Paul J. RayerPaul J. Rayer

Double Homicide
Officer John L. Stephens, 32, and
Paul J. Rayer, 51

Case Number: 67-01188
Council Bluffs, Iowa
Pottawattamie County
December 5, 1967

Officer John L. Stephens and Paul J. Rayer were shot and killed on Tuesday, December 5, 1967, during a robbery of a local restaurant where Officer Stephens moonlighted as a security guard. Officer Stephens was accompanying the manager (Rayer) as he counted the day’s receipts in preparation for a night deposit.

Judith PleasJudith Pleas

Judith Kaylene Pleas
17 YOA
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case Number: MP-73-226
August 10, 1973

Judith Kaylene Pleas, 17, disappeared from Council Bluffs, Iowa, on August 10, 1973. On October 14, 1973, a farmer discovered her remains near his cornfield outside Council Bluffs’ city limits. An investigation concluded the teen had been strangled.

Edward Leroy Hickson
32 YOA
Case # B78-1173
1500 block of So. 6th St.
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
February 15, 1978

On February 15, 1978 at 4:14 a.m., Council Bluffs Police Department officers responded to a fire call in the 1500 block of South 6th Street, where the fire department advised them there was an unresponsive male inside the Rock Island Bunkhouse #27. The victim was taken by ambulance to Mercy Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival and identified as Edward Leroy Hickson.

Linda MayfieldLinda Mayfield

Linda Mayfield
21 YOA
3320 West Broadway
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case Number: D82-0713
April 9, 1982

On April 9, 1982 at 2:18 a.m., officers were called to the Starlite Motel at 3320 West Broadway in Council Bluffs, Iowa, regarding a disturbance involving a man with a knife. When officers arrived at the scene, Linda Mayfield, 21, was found lying face down by the north office door. The responding officer said the victim had several stab wounds to her face, chest, stomach, hand and foot.

John P. Adams, Jr.
23 YOA
Case # G82-1088
2400 block of West Broadway
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
July 11, 1982

On July 11, 1982, John P. Adams, Jr., 23, was found lying on the road in the 2400 block of West Broadway Street in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He had been shot one time in the face by a man on a Kawasaki KZ900 motorcycle.

Johnny Jo ShieldsJohnny Joe Shields

Missing Person
Johnny Joe Shields
Age at Report: 32
Date of Birth: Feb. 12, 1956
Missing From: Carter Lake, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case Number: 89-00081
NCIC Number: M-337585780
Missing Since: December 16, 1988

Johnny Joe Shields, 32, who lived with his mother in Carter Lake, Iowa, was heard leaving the residence at 2 a.m. on Thursday, December 15, 1988, and has never returned to his residence nor contacted his family. He was reported missing to the Carter Lake Police Department in Carter Lake, Iowa, on December 16, 1988.

Missing Person
Bernadene Ann Sealine
Age at Report: 67
DOB: April 24, 1926
Weight: 170 lbs.
Height: 5’09″
Race: White
Hair: Grey
Eyes: Blue
Sex: Female
Incident Type: Missing after a catastrophe
Missing From: Pottawattamie County
PCSO Case File Number S21-002322
Council Bluffs, IA
Missing Since: July 10, 1993

Bernadene Sealine, 67, of Dexter, Iowa, was reported missing to the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on July 10, 1993 after the vehicle that she was in was swept away by flood waters. She is presumed to have died, but her body has never been recovered.

Humberto Cortez
Carter Lake, IA
Pottawattamie County
Case # 96-06859
June 21, 1996

On June 21, 1996, a partially decomposed male body was discovered in a rail car by a Paxton Verling Steel employee. The body was identified in December 2009 as that of Humberto Cortez.

John ConawayJohn Conaway

Missing Person
John Steven Conaway
Age at Report: 36
Date of Birth: Sept. 15, 1961
Case # 98-008374
Missing From: Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Missing Since: February 9, 1998

John Steven Conaway was reported missing to the Council Bluffs Police Department on February 9, 1998. He was last seen between 10 and 10:30 p.m. at Buffalo Joe’s Food & Spirits located near Rosenblatt Stadium in downtown Omaha, Nebraska.

Paul M. BrulePaul M. Brule

Paul Michael Brule
30 YOA
2118 Sixth Avenue
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
July 25, 1998

Paul Michael Brule, a 30-year-old Council Bluffs, Iowa man who received $10,000 weekly payouts from lottery winnings, was slain in his Sixth Avenue home in the early morning hours on Saturday, July 25, 1998, and his death poorly staged to mimic a suicide.

Kimberly RatliffKimberly Ratliff

Homicide — Arrest made Oct. 16, 2020
Kimberly Ratliff
22 YOA
1414 West Broadway
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
January 12, 1999

On January 12, 1999, Kimberly Ratliff, 22, was found in a car left in the parking lot of People’s Natural Gas at 1414 West Broadway in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Her throat had been slashed. An employee clearing snow from the sidewalk found Ratliff inside her white 1988 Plymouth Sundance at about 10:40 a.m.

On Friday, Council Bluffs police detectives requested and were granted an arrest warrant for Matt W. Kennedy, accusing him of first-degree murder. Detectives allege that Kennedy was involved in the brutal murder of his stepsister, Kimberly M. Ratliff, the Council Bluffs Police Department said in a press release.

Dennis AddlesbergerDennis Addlesberger

Missing Person
Dennis R. Addlesberger
Age at Disappearance: 46
DOB: March 8, 1953
Missing From: Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
PCSO case File Number S15-003324
Missing Since: March 16, 1999

Dennis Addlesberger, a 46-year-old white male, was reported missing to the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office in Council Bluffs on March 16, 1999.

Mohama BabaMohama Baba

Missing Person
Mohama Samsoudina Baba
Case # 05-055443
Date of Birth: September 19, 1983
Age at Report: 22
Missing From: Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Date Missing: December 3, 2005

Mohama Baba, 22, was reported missing to the Council Bluffs Police Department on December 3, 2005. If you have any information concerning this case, please contact Det. Brandon Danielson at the Council Bluffs Police Department at 712-326-2508.

Linn SnyderLinn Snyder

Missing Person
Linn Allen Snyder
Age at Report: 44
Date of Birth: 1962
Missing From: Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
Date Last Seen: September 3, 2006

Linn Snyder was reported missing to the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on September 9, 2006. Snyder was last seen on his Harley Davidson motorcycle on September 3, and has not answered his cell phone. His wallet and medications were found in his home.

Bob HatcherBob Hatcher

Robert Scott Hatcher
38 YOA
Iowa Riverfront Trail
Beneath Interstate 480 Bridge
Council Bluffs, IA
Pottawattamie County
March 8, 2007

On March 8, 2007, Robert Scott Hatcher, 38, was shot seven times as he stood on the Iowa Riverfront Trail beneath the Interstate 480 Bridge on the western edge of Council Bluffs, Iowa.

Robert “Kip” Bates

Robert Bruce “Kip” Bates III
39 YOA
Jump Start Conoco Station
109 Locust St.
Carter Lake, IA
Pottawattamie County
PCSO Case File S07-012121
September 27, 2007

Around 10 p.m. on the night of September 27, 2007, Robert Bruce “Kip” Bates was shot twice while working at the Carter Lake “Jump Start” convenience store. Bates was working alone at the store when he went out the front door to take a break. There, he was shot twice in about two seconds.

Joseph Riche

Missing Person
Joseph E. Riche
Age at Report: 40
Case # S17-002561
Neola, Iowa
Pottawattamie County (jurisdiction)
Last Seen: October 12, 2012

Joseph Edward Riche, 40, allegedly left his residence in Neola, Iowa on the morning of October 12, 2012. There has been no social media presence and none of his relatives or close friends have heard from him since that date. Riche does not have a known history of disappearing. There is no known description of what Riche was wearing at the time of his disappearance.


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2 Responses to Pottawattamie County

  1. Leif says:

    Henry Christensen was shot dead in Council Bluffs in 1941. His ex-wife was acquitted, and no one else was ever deemed a strong suspect.

  2. Jim Farrell says:

    Retired police capt. John Schweer was murdered in Council Bluffs on July 22, 1977. Two Omaha Ne males, Terry Harrington & Curtis McGhee, were convicted of this crime and sentenced to life based on the testimony of two other people (Kevin Hughes & a Miss. Pride, who happened to be dating each other.) After 25yrs of fighting for his innocence the case went all the way to the US Supreme Court. Before the big 12 in DC laid down their decision Council Bluffs reached a plea agreement with Harrington and McGhee and the were released. A mistrial was declared.
    Doesn’t this make Schweer’s case unsolved?



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