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Iowa law enforcement say they have solved 30-year-old triple murder

This news story was published on January 10, 2014.
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iowa dciOTTUMWA – The Wapello County Sheriff’s office, Davis County Sheriff’s office and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation have resolved the 1984 Triple Homicide of Justin Hook, Jr., age 20, Sara Link, age 41, and Tina Lade, age 19. Sara Link was the mother of Justin Hook. Hook and Tina Lade were dating at the time of the homicide.

On April 13, 1984, the Davis County Sheriff’s office requested assistance with a death investigation in rural Drakesville, Iowa. A deceased male was discovered that was later identified as Justin Hook, Jr. It was determined that Hook had been beaten to death.

The following day, April 14, 1984, Sara Link was reported missing to Law Enforcement. On April 16, 1984, Link’s body was discovered in a farm field off of a gravel road in rural Eldon, Iowa in Wapello County. From the evidence at the scene, it appears Link was taken to the area and subsequently beaten to death.

On April 18, 1984, Tina Lade was found in the same vicinity where Link’s body had been found. Lade has also been beaten to death. All 3 bodies had been beaten with a blunt object.

Footprints found at the scene of Tina Lade and Sara Link appeared to be from the same person as the tread pattern of the footwear impression was made by the same type of shoe. The investigation at the time yielded no arrests.

In August of 2011, the DCI Cold Case Unit, Davis County Sheriff’s office and the Wapello County Sheriff’s office started a review of the case. The evidence that was located at the sheriff’s office was re-examined. The evidence with the highest probability of obtaining DNA evidence was re-submitted to the DCI lab for analysis.

In March of 2012, the DCI Criminalistics Laboratory received information that a DNA profile previously developed from the evidence matched that of Andrew Wessel Six. The DNA evidence was recovered from the inside of the jeans of the murder victim Tina Lade.

Andrew Six was a suspect in the investigation in 1984. The investigation has yielded information indicating Six was involved in burglaries in the Ottumwa area. The investigation also found that Six and Justin Hook had some type of issue over a vehicle purchase. During an interview in 1984, Six denied knowing Tina Lade. Subsequent investigations addressed additional suspects that were involved in criminal activity which included Six. Although some of these individuals are now deceased, the others have been interviewed.

Andrew Six was arrested in April 1987, along with his uncle Donald Petary. Both individuals were arrested for the abduction and murder of Kathy Allen from the Ottumwa area. Allen’s body was recovered in Schuyler County, Missouri. Six was convicted of Murder in the First Degree and was given a death sentence. Prior to being executed, investigators attempted to interview Six regarding the Hook, Link, and Lade murders; however he was uncooperative. Six was executed by lethal injection in Missouri in August of 1997. Six’s uncle, Donald Petary, was also convicted of Murder in the First Degree of Kathy Allen. Petary died in prison in 1998.

Although Federal grant funding for the DCI Cold Case Unit was exhausted in December 2011, the DCI remains committed to resolving Iowa’s cold cases. The DCI will continue to assign agents to investigate cold cases as new leads develop or as technological advances are made which allow for additional forensic testing of original evidence. The DCI remains committed to the resolution of Iowa’s cold cases and will continue to work diligently with our local law enforcement partners to bring the perpetrators of these crimes to justice for the victims and their families.

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