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Investigators believe 1985 murder has been solved using DNA; one man arrested

This news story was published on March 24, 2016.
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CORALVILLE, Iowa – Taking an Iowa man in for questioning one more time allowed investigators to snag his DNA and link him to a decades-old murder.

The Iowa Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), in cooperation with the Coralville Police Department, arrested Anthony Burtch, 57, of Iowa City, on March 24, 2016, and charged him with Murder in the First Degree, a Class “A” Felony.

On August 13, 1985, at approximately 7:15AM, the body of Lance DeWoody, 22, was found on the floor of a picnic shelter at the University of Iowa Oakdale campus in Coralville, Iowa.

An autopsy was performed on the body of Lance DeWoody and the cause of death was determined to be two gunshot wounds to the head and face and the manner of death was ruled homicide.

Throughout the investigation it was determined that DeWoody was dating the wife of Burtch. DeWoody and Burtch’s wife spent the evening of August 12, 1985, together and then Burtch’s wife returned home to Burtch. Shortly after her return, Burtch left for approximately an hour-and-a-half. Investigators believe that Burtch killed DeWoody during this time.

In the time leading up to the homicide of DeWoody, witnesses recall Burtch stating that he was going to kill DeWoody.

Burtch told investigators that a trio harassed him and DeWoody for months prior to the murder. A witness claims that Burtch provided DeWoody a piece of paper with the names of those men. Investigators were able to locate that piece of paper during the investigation and later determined the men non-existent.

In January, during an interview with a DCI Agent, Burtch denied having been harassed by the trio of men prior to the night of the murder of DeWoody. During that same interview, DCI Agents were able to obtain a sample of Burtch’s DNA to compare to DNA found at the crime scene, which is when Burtch agreed that he would “get buried on the sciences of this thing.”

Burtch was arrested without incident this morning and is being held at the Johnson County Jail on $1 million cash or surety bond.



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2 Responses to Investigators believe 1985 murder has been solved using DNA; one man arrested

  1. Avatar

    Peter L Reply Report comment

    March 25, 2016 at 3:54 am

    There was a time when sleeping with another man’s wife would earn you a state-imposed death sentence. Other cultures, different eras. Just saying. Not condoning murder, but if a lawyer was worth his salt, they should be able to plea it down to 2nd degree or 3rd degree. Basically, by sentencing ths man to life in prison (which no doubt he’ll receive) the State is preferencing the act of adultery versus fidelity. It then becomes “ok” to infiltrate the sanctity of marriage for predatory males, looking to insert their semen into as many females as possible. Basic biology versus rule of law. Would a snow monkey be sentenced to prison for killing an encroaching male on the tribe? No. It would be considered part of the defense of the institution. Anyways…he’s close to the processing center for incoming prisoners.

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    Katie Reply Report comment

    March 25, 2016 at 12:29 am

    Here, have a can of pop while we visit.