No remains found at southwest Iowa site of alleged serial killings




  • In US
  • 2022-12-09 03:14:16Z
  • By The Des Moines Register
A line of vehicles parked Wednesday near the southwest Iowa site where authorities searched for human remains said to have been buried there by a serial killer.
A line of vehicles parked Wednesday near the southwest Iowa site where authorities searched for human remains said to have been buried there by a serial killer.  

After exhaustive efforts, authorities found no evidence or "items of concern" over a three-day search this week of a remote area in southwest Iowa where a former Iowa woman alleged her late father, who she claimed was a serial killer, dumped bodies of victims, the Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation announced Thursday.

"Authorities brought in an array of experts representing several disciplines and significant assets to excavate, collect and examine soil samples from a site identified by a reporting party," the DCI said in a news release. "After exhaustive efforts, no evidence or other items of concern were recovered.

"No further information will be released at this time."

Lucy Studey McKiddy, 53, alleged Donald Dean Studey murdered "five or six" women a year over several decades and buried them in and around an abandoned well on his property near Thurman, about 40 miles from Omaha, Nebraska.

McKiddy's claims made international news after Newsweek reported two cadaver dogs registered "hits" at the site in late October, indicating the possible presence of decomposing remains in the area near the well.

The FBI, DCI and Fremont County Sheriff's Office all descended on the land behind a place called Green Hollow this week to investigate. McKiddy said her father, who died in 2013. killed mostly women and transients he picked up near the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro. Previously: Did a serial killer really live near Thurman, Iowa? Sheriff, townspeople don't count it out

A photo of Anna Studey with her husband Donald Studey on her grave stone near Thurman Iowa, Wednesday, Oct.
A photo of Anna Studey with her husband Donald Studey on her grave stone near Thurman Iowa, Wednesday, Oct.  

Previously:Did a serial killer really live near Thurman, Iowa? Sheriff, townspeople don't count it out

On a private Facebook page dedicated to her search, McKiddy, of Lakeland, Florida, said Thursday that before the DCI issued its news release, she was "unofficially told" the search was called off because of bad weather.

"I am reading the DCI report," she wrote. "We are checking into this."

More:From John Wayne Gacy to the 'I-65 Killer,' how these 11 serial killers are connected to Iowa

Studey, who was 75 when he died, didn't have a criminal record in Iowa. But McKiddy, 53, insisted her father was a crook and a gambler most of his life.

"He stole from every job he ever had," she told Watchdog in an interview. "He ran drugs, guns and (dealt) in stolen property. He got jobs only when he needed to."

She has not responded to attempts to contact her this week.

More:What we know about the alleged Iowa serial killer Donald Studey, investigation in Thurman

In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper in late October, Naveed Jamali, a Newsweek editor at large working on the story, said the staff had established evidence that Studey was a gambler who lived a life of crime.

That alone didn't make him a serial killer, he acknowledged. However, in "speaking to people," Jamali said, reporters also discovered "a pattern" suggesting Studey "may have been connected to a criminal ring and potentially organized crime."

McKiddy said she had tried without success for years before the Newsweek story to get authorities to look into her allegations.

Lee Rood's Reader's Watchdog column helps Iowans get answers and accountability from public officials, the justice system, businesses and nonprofits. Reach her at lrood@registermedia.com, at 515-284-8549, on Twitter at @leerood or on Facebook at Facebook.com/readerswatchdog.

This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: Search of alleged Iowa serial killer's land turns up no evidence

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