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Author Topic: Skeletal remains found 7/7/09 in Inks Lake/Burnet TX (ID'd Holly Marie Simmons)  (Read 29190 times)
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Nut44x4
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« on: July 11, 2009, 08:41:53 PM »

Skeletal remains found in Inks Lake
7/11/2009 3:07 PM
By: Associated Press

MARBLE FALLS, Texas — Llano County Sheriff Bill Blackburn said skeletal remains found in Inks Lake by recreational scuba divers this week were likely underwater for more than a year.

Deputies are treating the case as a homicide, the River Cities Daily Tribune in Marble Falls reported Friday. The gender and age of the body were undetermined.

The remains were discovered submerged in a boat Tuesday. They were recovered two days later by divers from the Department of Public Safety.

Deputies are working to identify the remains, which were taken to the Travis County Medical Examiner's Office in Austin.

Marble Falls is about 50 miles northwest of Austin.

http://www.news8austin.com/content/your_news/default.asp?ArID=246067

PDF MAP
http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/findadest/parks/inks/media/pdf/inksloc.pdf
« Last Edit: November 03, 2009, 05:06:39 PM by Nut44x4 » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2009, 09:12:15 PM »

Muffy, if you see anything here that isn't correct re: locations...please post corrections. There are many conflicting reports on the location. I'll check again tomorrow in the news for any updates/corrections in reports.

Some reports say Marble Falls/Lake, but most say Ink Lake which is in Ink Lake State Park. That, by checking the map, is located in West Burnet. Some reports are even saying the remains have been there for 2 years  News reporters drive me nuts 
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« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2009, 11:04:50 AM »




Diving group finds body in Inks Lake
Llano Co. sheriff calls lake death 'homicide'
Updated: Friday, 10 Jul 2009, 6:28 PM CDT
Published : Friday, 10 Jul 2009, 10:02 AM CDT

LLANO COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) - Recreational divers exploring the bottom of Inks Lake found a badly decomposed body Tuesday. Llano County Sheriff’s officials are calling the death a homicide, and they suspect foul play.

Chief Deputy John Neff said crews brought the body to the lake’s surface Thursday. Divers located it in a submerged boat under the Highway 29 bridge, which stretches across the Colorado River where it becomes Inks Lake.

“The autopsy is underway today,” Neff said. “We will know a lot more after that, but right now we’re leaning toward foul play.”

Neff also added the condition of the body indicated it had been at the bottom of the lake for “quite some time.”
“It was so badly decomposed,” he said, “we’re not sure if it’s a man or a woman."

He would not comment further on the discovery of the body or why foul play could be behind the person’s death.

"The body was in an advanced state of decomposition, mostly skeletal remains," said Bill Blackburn, Llano County Sheriff.

Blackburn conjectures the body was left on the bottom of the lake a long time ago.
"Anywhere from a year or two, somewhere in there," said Blackburn.

DPS dive teams, Lower Colorado River Authority Rangers, game wardens, Texas Rangers, investigators from the City of Llano and deputies from the Llano and Burnet County Sheriff’s Offices were all part of the investigation initially. Llano County is now handling the case.

Neff said the Travis County Medical Examiner’s office would handle the autopsy. Inks Lake State Park manager Terry Rodgers said he was shocked to learn the news.

“Inks Lake is a very popular scuba diving lake,” Rodgers said. “That area in particular surprises me, because people dive there all the time.”

"I was a little bit shocked and surprised," said Buck Hendrix, a resident of Inks Lake.

Inks Lake is part of the seven-lake Highland Chain. Drought rarely affects the lake, as the Lower Colorado River Authority maintains its level most of the time.

http://www.kxan.com/dpp/mobile/Recreational_divers_find_body_at_Inks
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« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2009, 05:14:05 PM »

5 pages of comments here >>>
http://www.chron.com/disp/discuss.mpl/breaking/6524584.html?p=1
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« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2009, 06:27:24 PM »

Looks like a Row Boat....would not be Registered, IMO.

Body found in Inks Lake mystery

The first question confronting investigators examining the skeletal remains that surfaced in Inks Lake last week is, “Who is it?”

That’s just what the Travis County Medical Examiner’s office is trying to determine—but the process didn’t begin on their examination table.

It started last Tuesday when recreational divers from the Buchanan Dam area found the body during a recreational dive near the SH 29 bridge over Inks Lake.

As soon as they reported their find to the Llano County Sheriff’s Office, officials called the Texas Department of Public Safety dive team and asked the divers who made the find to keep quiet.

“They’re witnesses (to a crime scene), so I don’t know if we want to put them out front,” said Llano County Sheriff’s Office chief deputy John Neff.

The DPS dive team was working another dive in McAllen, so the recovery operation in Inks Lake had to wait until Thursday.

Meanwhile, the Sheriff’s Office checked missing persons lists in the county and databases with the DPS, and posted deputies to keep an eye on the area.

One of those missing persons is Shirley Cowan, 55, who disappeared in January 2001

Her son-in-law, Thomas James Negri, was convicted of her murder in 2007—one of the few convictions in the state’s history without a body having been found.

“We’re certainly looking at that (possibility) also,” Neff said. But, “There’s nothing that says one way or the other.”

However, investigators aren’t counting on the possibility that their murder suspect has already been incarcerated.

“We’ve asked (the people who found the body) not to comment on it,” Neff said. “They’ve seen a lot that we don’t want the public to know (yet).”
http://www.burnetbulletin.com/pages/full_story/push?article-Body+found+in+Inks+Lake+mystery%20&id=2951385&instance=llano_news
« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 06:29:13 PM by Nut44x4 » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2009, 06:30:24 PM »

Found body brings up old, unsolved case
Neighbors still wonder about the case
Updated: Tuesday, 14 Jul 2009, 6:34 PM CDT

LLANO COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) - The discovery of a body in Inks Lake is bringing new hope to solving an old, missing-persons mystery.

Amateur divers discovered the body last week submerged in a weighted down boat beneath the old Highway 29 bridge. Immediately, talk stirred of one of the few murder convictions in Texas that ever came without finding a body.

The skeletal remains pulled from these waters left Llano County authorities with a fresh mysteryÂ… that might have a link to a crime some still wonder even happened.

"For years, it was empty, and we always called it the ghost house," said Polly Gifford.

Art and Polly Gifford live 15 minutes from last week's crime sceneÂ… but next door to something that has troubled them for eight years.

"It was hard going to the trial and watching him and seeing his family torn apart," said Polly.

The man who built the Kingsland home next to the Giffords now serves a 20-year prison sentence for murdering his mother-in-law. Shirley Cowan, 60, commissioned Thomas Negri to complete the house in 2001. The Giffords watched his trial years laterÂ… learning about Cowan's blood found next door.

"He told everybody," said Art. "He told his family and us and everybody else that, 'Oh, she's just on a vacation. She's going to show up.' And I hoped she showed up."

When crews revealed the discovery at Inks Lake, the Giffords waited for answers.

"It appeared to me that the body was submerged in the water inside that boat intended as its final resting place," said John Neff, the Llano County Chief Deputy Chief.

The Llano County Sheriff's Office had little to say about this much-talked-about case.

"We're looking into all possibilities of individuals from Llano County," said Neff. "I can't comment on [whether or not she's one of the cases we're looking into]."

The state shows a total of nine active missing persons cases in Llano and neighboring Burnet Counties. Giving up on Cowan ever coming back from that vacation, the Giffords hope the find is in fact the neighbor they never really knew.

"I think the family needs some kind of closure, and eventually I think she will surface," said Polly.

The autopsy on those skeletal remains is complete, but it could still be weeks before authorities can determine an identity or if the bones belong to a man or a woman.

In the meantime, the Llano County Sheriff's Office urge anyone with information about missing persons, including Shirley Cowan, to call them.
http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/crime/Found_body_brings_up_old_unsolved_case#14084281-2
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« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2009, 06:30:56 PM »

COMMENTS AT THE ABOVE LINK>>>>> Ms. Cowan ruled out.

Karen Cowan Jack · 2 weeks ago

My family and I prayed it would be my Mom(Shirley Cowan) so we could have some closure and bury her remains next to my Father and Brother.
I got the news this afternoon that it was not my Mom!!
Maybe one of these days her body will be found!
Your Loving Daighter
Karen Cowan Jack
RIP January 14th, 2001
We Love and Miss YOU!!!!
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« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2009, 08:51:42 PM »

geez...still no word on who this person is? who did the boat belong to?
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« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2009, 09:07:46 PM »

It is a row boat.....unlikely it needs registration for ownership.
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« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2009, 09:34:24 PM »

I've been checking and haven't seen any information on this case since the initial find.
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« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2009, 09:44:10 PM »

seems like a rather odd case to me....
no report of a stolen boat in the area at the time?
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« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2009, 09:56:37 PM »

seems like a rather odd case to me....
no report of a stolen boat in the area at the time?

Cookie, Inks lake is in a large recreational area.  There are a lot of small boats, canoes, kayaks and such around.  From the articles, it doesn't look as if LE is really sure about the time period yet.  There just isn't any information available except for the articles posted here that Nut or I can find so far.  The skeletal remains are probably with forensics and hopefully they can be id'd.  If I see any news, I'll try to update. 
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« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2009, 09:58:49 PM »

thanks muffers....
someone somewhere is probably thinking that they have/had gotten away with murder...hope that this person can be identified and their family will know where their loved one is...
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« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2009, 10:05:30 PM »

thanks muffers....
someone somewhere is probably thinking that they have/had gotten away with murder...hope that this person can be identified and their family will know where their loved one is...

 an angelic monkey
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« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2009, 03:10:40 PM »

I am impatient  You would think they could say male or female by now. It has been over a month. 
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« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2009, 03:41:07 PM »

I am impatient  You would think they could say male or female by now. It has been over a month. 

I haven't seen anything else on this at all.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zip.  Maybe it's held up in forensics?  But... when LE is this tight lipped about something, it gives me the feeling they know something.  JMHO
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« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2009, 06:33:57 PM »

Yes....that is what I was thinking.  Me wants to know now! 
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« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2009, 03:17:03 PM »

Yes....that is what I was thinking.  Me wants to know now! 

I'm waiting!!
 
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« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2009, 04:36:25 PM »

Yes....that is what I was thinking.  Me wants to know now! 

I'm waiting!!
 



I've got this case on my watch list, and so far I've found absolutely nothing since the initial finding.  I'm pretty sure it's on Nut's list too...  If I see any news update at all, I will post it here for sure. 
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« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2009, 06:38:59 PM »

Oh yeah...... I check every single day 
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