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Iowa cops probing claims man is America’s most prolific serial killer start digging under well

Police investigating allegations a farmer in Iowa murdered up to 70 women and dumped their bodies in a well are testing soil at the property in Iowa.

Lucy Studey McKiddy, 53, claims that her father, Donald Dean Studey, was a serial killer who forced her and her siblings to dump the bodies of women he killed into a 100ft well.

She said that Studey, who died in March 2013 aged 75, was ‘routinely drunk’ and liked to kill women by smashing or kicking in their heads inside a trailer.

Investigators believe his daughter’s claims, which would make Studey one of the most prolific serial killers in American history.

Authorities have swooped on farmland in Iowa previously owned by Donald Studey, who died in March 2013 aged 75, after his daughter claimed that he murdered at least 70 women

According to his daughter Lucy, she and her siblings did their father's bidding when he told them to 'go to the hills' because they were terrified they 'wouldn't come back'

According to his daughter Lucy, she and her siblings did their father’s bidding when he told them to ‘go to the hills’ because they were terrified they ‘wouldn’t come back’ 

Local, state and federal law enforcement officials made their way to the area where Studey claims the women were buried to begin collecting dirt samples to test for human remains.

Witnesses claimed to see at least 15 vehicles arrive in the area before blocking it off adding that they brought a piece of heavy equipment with them.

Sources told Newsweek that the plan was to bore into the week where McKiddy claims the bodies were buried as well as digging and testing for possible shallow graves on the land.

McKiddy said ‘finally’ when told the news on Tuesday and said she has pushed for an investigation for at last 45 years.

She added: ‘I hope that the authorities dig in the right locations and find all the bodies.’

Fremont County Sheriff’s Office, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and the FBI were unavailable for comment.

Witnesses claimed to see at least 15 vehicles arrive in the area before blocking it off adding that they brought a piece of heavy equipment with them

Witnesses claimed to see at least 15 vehicles arrive in the area before blocking it off adding that they brought a piece of heavy equipment with them 

The FBI and Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation are both assisting the local police force with the investigation

The FBI and Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation are both assisting the local police force with the investigation

Deputy Sheriff Tim Bothwell said that McKiddy had previously told them about her father’s alleged history in 2007 – which prompted them to excavate a portion of the property.

The process cost the county more than $300,000 but deputies are now planning a second excavation after they searched land behind the Studey property.

Cadaver dogs alerted at least four spots on the property, with the last getting multiple ‘hits’ in the area surrounding the well. 

McKiddy has been accused of giving ‘conflicting claims’ surrounding her father, with her elder sister Susan denying the allegations against their father.

Susan told Newsweek. said: ‘I’m two years older than Lucy. I think I would know if my father murdered.

‘I would know if my dad was a serial killer. He was not, and I want my father’s name restored.

‘He was strict, but he was a protective parent who loved his children. Strict fathers don’t just turn into serial killers.’

Sources claim that the plan was to bore into the week where McKiddy claims the bodies were buried as well as digging and testing for possible shallow graves on the land

Sources claim that the plan was to bore into the week where McKiddy claims the bodies were buried as well as digging and testing for possible shallow graves on the land

Deputy Sheriff Tim Bothwell said that McKiddy had previously told them about her father's alleged history in 2007 – which prompted them to excavate a portion of the property

Deputy Sheriff Tim Bothwell said that McKiddy had previously told them about her father’s alleged history in 2007 – which prompted them to excavate a portion of the property

She also believes the cadaver dogs were fooled by the remains of their stillborn infant sister, who was buried in a shoebox on the property, as well as the body of a golden retriever.

Deputy Bothwell said that he doubted McKiddy’s credibility, after she admitted stealing $16,000 from her father and the officer was unable to find the well.

But Sheriff Kevin Aistrope said that the FBI have backed away from the investigation in recent weeks, adding: ‘I’m not going to let it die. I’m just not gonna let that happen.

‘We’ve got to go with Lucy. No matter if they say it’s not true or say she’s crazy or whatever they can say, we have to look into it. We have no other choice.’

McKiddy told deputies in 2021 that she had ‘heard stories that there could be up to 15 bodies’ buried on her father’s land but she only knew about five personally, the Des Moines Register reported.

Fremont County Sheriff¿s office confirmed that cadaver dogs alerted to several spots on the property, as well as some on neighboring land

Fremont County Sheriff’s office confirmed that cadaver dogs alerted to several spots on the property, as well as some on neighboring land

However McKiddy has been accused of giving ‘conflicting claims’ surrounding her father, with her elder sister Susan denying the allegations against their father

However McKiddy has been accused of giving ‘conflicting claims’ surrounding her father, with her elder sister Susan denying the allegations against their father

Her claims were different to those she made to Newsweek, telling police that she watched her father and two others carry a body from the trunk of a vehicle.

She suspected that her father sexually assaulted and killed a 15-year-old girl in the 1970s or 80s when she was in the car with him. The girl vanished the next morning.

However she told Newsweek that the victims could be as many as 70, and that her father kept the gold teeth as trophies.

McKiddy claims that the women all had dark hair, were white and most were in their 20s and 30s except for a 15-year-old runaway.

Investigators believe that he lured woman, thought to be sex workers from Omaha, Nebraska, to his five acres of land before murdering them.

Police reports also confirm that Studey’s two late wives killed themselves, with one dying by strangulation and the other shooting herself.

Investigators believe his daughter's claims, which would make Studey one of the most prolific serial killers in American history

Investigators believe his daughter’s claims, which would make Studey one of the most prolific serial killers in American history 

Studey reportedly had a history of violence and run-ins with the law, including threatening to kill relatives.

The property, on Green Hollow Road, is not an official crime scene because officers have not yet discovered any remains.

Studey, who had ‘love’ and ‘hate’ tattooed on his knuckles, is understood to have a criminal history but was known to use several aliases.

He was jailed in Missouri in the 1950s for petty larceny, in Omaha in 1989 for a drunk driving offense – as cops confirmed they rarely went to the trailer where he lived because they were ‘wary’ of him.

Studey reportedly forced his children to pile dirt and chemical lye on top of the bodies after dumping them into the well.

Lucy said: ‘All I want is to get these sites dug up, and to bring closure for people and to give these women a proper burial. My father was a lifelong criminal and murderer.’

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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