Cold Cases in the News – 2009 Archives

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GONE COLD: EXPLORING IOWA’S UNSOLVED MURDERS

An ongoing series, published statewide, as part of a partnership between Iowa Cold Cases, the Iowa Newspaper Association, and participating newspapers.

Click or tap on any story title to read the full referenced article.


December 31, 2009
Cold Case: Shelby Police, SBI investigate mysterious deaths of “The Three Women” in 2003
SHELBY, NC – For Rich Ivey, one of the most memorable days of his career came this week. Monday, he was able to tell the family of Margaret Tessneer that police had made an arrest in her mysterious 2003 death.


December 20, 2009
DNA might help Iowa close criminal cases
Secrets from the grave might help close some unsolved Iowa criminal cases, but collecting DNA samples from homicide victims likely would raise civil liberties concerns.


December 20, 2009
30 years ago: Murder of teen haunts those who knew her
CEDAR RAPIDS — Every year, Christmas brings it all back for Janelle Stonebraker. And it’s been 30 years. About 4 a.m. Dec. 20, 1979, police discovered the body of Michelle Martinko in the parking lot at Westdale Mall.


December 20, 2009
30 Years Later: Michelle Martinko Murder Still Unsolved
CEDAR RAPIDS – This weekend, marks the 30th anniversary of an unsolved murder in Cedar Rapids. About 4 a.m. Dec. 20, 1979, police discovered the body of Michelle Martinko in the parking lot at Westdale Mall. The case shook Cedar Rapids, and never has been solved.


November 23, 2009
Perjury hearing in Lyon County cold case delayed
ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa — A court hearing for an Inwood, Iowa, man’s request to have perjury charges against him dismissed in connection with a three-decades-old slaying has been postponed for a third time.


November 15, 2009
Unsolved: Trick or Treat Murder of 1982
Fort Dodge, IA — Twenty seven years ago, her grandfather was murdered. And still, no one has been charged with his death. Now Teresa Trueblood is hoping to find some new information.


November 4, 2009
DCI Launches New Sex Offender Registry Database and Web Site
Des Moines, IOWA — At an early afternoon press conference, the Iowa Department of Public Safety (DPS), Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) unveiled the newly re-designed Sex Offender Registry database and web site, www.iowasexoffender.com.


October 13, 2009
Clues sought a year after death
CAMANCHE — The family of Alysia K. Marburger, whose body was found south of Camanche last October, is offering a $5,000 reward for information related to her death.


October 9, 2009
Reward Offered in Sabula Woman’s Death
The body of 27-year-old Alysia Marburger was found in October, 2008 along a road near the Rock Creek cabins near Camanche. She had been reported missing two weeks earlier.


October 8, 2009
Iowa Soldier Returns Home To Murder Charges
DES MOINES, Iowa — An Iowa soldier who returned home from Iraq on Thursday will face murder charges in the 2005 hit-and-run death of an Altoona woman.


October 2, 2009
Time will tell
On the anniversary of Lisa McCuddin’s death, authorities say they know who shot her. Still, a mother’s pain won’t end.


October 2, 2009
‘Coward’ thinks he got away with murder
It’s nowhere near a cold case. Next week, an officer will spend three full days examining evidence in the 2004 murder of Lisa McCuddin, according to Special Agent Larry Hedlund, with the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.


September 20, 2009
Rumors surround 1980 killings: 2 found brutally murdered 29 years ago
From the St. Joe New-Press: R.J. Cooper’s in-depth story on the unsolved double slaying of Rose Burkert and Roger Atkison at the Amana Holiday Inn in 1980.


September 15, 2009
Man Pleads Not Guilty To 2001 Slaying
FORT DODGE, Iowa — A man accused of killing an Iowa woman in 2001 has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.


September 3, 2009
Man facing perjury in Nissen case waives hearing
ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa — According to Lyon County Attorney Carl Peterson, an 82-year-old Inwood, Iowa man charged with six counts of perjury waived his right to a hearing scheduled for Wednesday morning in Lyon County District Court.


September 1, 2009
Missing Iowa Boy’s Mother Holds Out Hope: Johnny Gosch Missing Nearly 27 Years
DES MOINES, Iowa — The mother of a Des Moines boy kidnapped nearly 27 years ago spoke out Friday about the recent kidnapping case in California.


August 28, 2009
Inwood Man Accused Of Perjury In Cold Case
An 82-year-old Inwood, Iowa man will be in court next week in connection with a cold case death investigation.


August 26, 2009
Iowa Paper Features Full Page 1 Ad on Reward for Information in Unsolved Earl Thelander Death
Onawa, Iowa — It’s been two years since a deadly explosion caused by copper theft claimed the nation’s first innocent victim, and Earl Thelander’s family isn’t giving up on finding those responsible for his death.


August 25, 2009
Man Wanted In 2001 Murder To Return To Iowa
DES MOINES, Iowa — Webster County Sheriff’s officials are headed to California this week to pick up a man wanted as a suspect in a 2001 murder case.


August 20, 2009
Man Questioned In 2005 Murder Case
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — A man questioned in the 2005 slaying of a 5-year-old Iowa girl whose killing remains unsolved has pleaded guilty to a federal drug charge.


August 19, 2009
New details emerge in Lyon County mystery
INWOOD, Iowa — A Inwood, Iowa, man accused of making false statements to law enforcement officers about the 30-year-old murder of a woman whose body was found in Northwest Iowa will appear in court next month, and authorities are saying little about his connection to the case.


August 17, 2009
New Details Of A Man Arrested In Decades Old Cold Case
(KCAU) A Siouxland man has been arrested and charged with perjury, in a decades-old cold-case murder.


August 14, 2009
Man arrested in connection to Wilma Nissen cold case
ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa (KTIV) — Lyon County authorities have made an arrest in connection with a Siouxland cold case.


August 14, 2009
Cold case: Cedar Falls police hope for clues in 35-year-old murder case
CEDAR FALLS — Dennis Michael Clougherty would have been 58 this year. But Clougherty’s life ended in 1974 when he was passing through Cedar Falls. A 23-year-old Vietnam veteran soon to start a year of graduate school at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Clougherty was hitchhiking his way to Wyoming.


August 14, 2009
2001 Murder Suspect To Return To Iowa
DES MOINES, Iowa — A man wanted in connection with a 2001 murder case will be returned to Iowa.


August 12, 2009
Cedar Falls re-examines 1974 unsolved murder
CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) – 35 years ago, 23 year old Dennis Clougherty was shot to death on a roadside in Cedar Falls.


August 12, 2009
Cedar Falls Police Taking Second Look at Cold Case
CEDAR FALLS – More than three decades later, police are taking a second look at an unsolved murder along a Cedar Falls highway. 35 years ago Thursday, August 13th, 1974, police found 23 year-old Dennis Clougherty shot to death in a ditch in Cedar Falls.


August 5, 2009
New Picture Released In 25-Year-Old Case
DES MOINES, Iowa — Could a new picture help solve the 25-year-old Eugene Martin missing person’s case?


July 22, 2009
Police are confident they’ll find girl’s killer
On a July morning in 2005, Noel Miller came home from working the night shift at an Iowa nursing home. She told police she arrived around 6:20 a.m. and discovered that her 5-year-old daughter, Evelyn, was missing.


July 2, 2009
Floyd County Sheriff still optomistic about Evelyn Miller case
The Floyd County Sheriff remains optimistic about solving the murder case of Evelyn Miller. Wednesday (July1st) was the four-year anniversary of they day family members reported the five-year-old girl missing from her rural Floyd apartment. Miller’s body was found five days later in the Cedar River in Charles City.


July 2, 2009
Evelyn Miller Murder Investigation: 4 Years Later
FLOYD COUNTY – Five-year-old Evelyn Miller’s has now been dead for nearly as long as she was alive. The Floyd County girl disappeared on July 1, 2005. A kayaker found her body in the Cedar River five days later.


June 5, 2009
Boyfriend of dead girl’s mom faces drug charges
CHARLES CITY — A federal grand jury has indicted the boyfriend of Evelyn Miller’s mother on drug charges. Casey Frederiksen, who was one of the last people to see 5-year-old Evelyn alive before she disappeared in July 2005, is currently serving a 14-year sentence for child pornography charges.


June 4, 2009
Case of missing Clarke County man remains open
It has been nearly five and one-half years since the Clarke County Sheriff’s Department received a call that Bill Douglas was missing. Despite countless hours searching the Douglas farm and the years of investigating the disappearance with the assistance of the Division of Criminal Investigation, the Clarke County man’s whereabouts remain a mystery.


May 31, 2009
Cedar Rapids family remembers missing girl
As they have every year for the past eight around the first week of June, Carolyn and Jim Pospisil gathered Sunday afternoon with friends and family.


May 31, 2009
Iowa trip yields few clues in ’83 cold case
When Bambi Dick vanished from her Davenport, Iowa, neighborhood, few suspected something sinister had happened to the 17-year-old.


May 27, 2009
Toddler Murder Shares Similarities With Sioux City Cold Case
The tragic death of 3-year-old Evelyn, the South Sioux City toddler viciously raped and killed over the weekend, is drawing many similarities to a 50-year-old Sioux City cold case. Evelyn’s case and that of 22-month-old Donna Sue Davis are very similar, including the ages of the girls, where they were killed, and the brutal way they were murdered.


May 24, 2009
The Odd Little Preacher
Was Reverend George Kelly responsible for the 1912 Villisca Axe Murders?


May 18, 2009
Texas Detectives to visit Davenport to pursue murder case
DAVENPORT — Two investigators from the Amarillo Special Crimes Unit will be in Davenport this week interviewing family and friends of murder victim Bambi Dick in an effort to make progress on the case.


May 8, 2009
Increased Reward on Metro Cold Cases
It’s been nearly nine months since the woman Jesse Bilbrey calls his “best friend” was found dead in her home on S.E. Watrous. A day later Des Moines Police confirmed 87-year-old Hazel Reimann had been killed. Bilbrey says he’s nearly given up hope of ever knowing what happened the night she died.


May 6, 2009
A Year Later, A Murder Remains Unsolved
MUSCATINE, Iowa — A 27-year-old man’s killer has not been arrested one year after mushroom hunters found his body in a rural Muscatine woods.


April 15, 2009
New fingerprinting technique could crack cold cases
New technique enables scientists to detect fingerprints on spent bullets and shell casings, even when the print had been wiped off.


April 6, 2009
Reward Increased In Mystic Shooting Death
Nearly a year after Chuck Deatsch was shot and killed in his Mystic home the reward for information leading to an arrest in the case has gone up. Last April, police received a 911 call from Deatsch’s wife.


April 3, 2009
Deatsch reward now $40,000
On April 28, 2008 Chuck Deatsch was shot and killed at his residence in rural Mystic. The day that Chuck was killed, a father; husband; best friend; respected farmer; a good neighbor; and a man devoted to God was taken from so many.


April 2, 1009
Best friend has theories about Ruddy murder
As if finding her best friend’s two small children home alone wasn’t frightening enough.. the events that would follow and the questioning of who took Connie Ruddy are forever tattooed on the mind of a woman we’ll call “Jane.”


April 1, 2009
Siouxland cold case gets boost from victim’s best friend – Part 1
IDA GROVE, Iowa (KTIV) – It’s been more than 12 years since a Siouxland woman disappeared, leaving two small children behind.


March 26, 2009
‘Haunting Villisca’ explores famed Iowa ax slayings
Filmmaker and Iowa native Kimberly Busbee, a 1974 UI graduate and owner of Des Moines-based AriesWorks Entertainment, grew up vaguely familiar with the crimes but never knew the specifics.


March 26, 2009
Texas Jane Doe identified as missing Davenport teen
The Dick family finally found their Bambi. And Amarillo, Texas, finally figured out the identity of its Jane Doe.


March 24, 2009
Exclusive Access: Inside Iowa’s Crime Lab
TV shows like “CSI”, “Without A Trace”, and “NCIS” take you inside fictional crime labs all the time. Iowa’s crime lab is very different and it’s not out there for millions to see.


March 4, 2009
Name released of man found dead in ditch
DENISON, Iowa (KTIV) – New details in the case of a man found dead in a western Iowa ditch.


March 1, 2009
Two area counties revive cold cases
In the spotlight once again is the Feb. 10, 1997, disappearance and apparent homicide of Connie Ruddy of Ida Grove and the slaying of Wilma Jean Nissen, whose body was found Oct. 4, 1978, in a ditch in rural Lyon County.


February 16, 2009
Cops offer $10,000 Reward for Lyon County Cold Case
ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa — Officials hope a $10,000 reward will help them solve the 30-year-old murder of a woman whose body was found in northwest Iowa.


February 10, 2009
Sheriff to pay $5,000 for tip on case
Ida County Sheriff Wade Harriman held a news conference today to offer a $5,000 reward to anyone with information leading to an arrest and conviction in the disappearance of an Ida Grove woman 12 years ago.


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