Police to search for Sioux Falls woman missing since 1974

November 12, 2019 GMT

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Sioux Falls police are renewing a search for the remains of a woman missing for 45 years after receiving new leads in the case, authorities said Tuesday.

Ellabeth Lodermeier was 25 when she disappeared from her Sioux Falls home on March 6, 1974. She has not been seen since and is presumed dead.

At least one dog will be brought in Wednesday to search an area near the Mary Jo Wegner Arboretum along the Big Sioux River, Sioux Falls police spokesman Sam Clemens said Tuesday.

The search will take place in the area where Lodermeier’s purse and pocketbook were found in 1992, nearly two decades after she went missing, the Argus Leader reported.

Family and some law enforcement officials believe Lodermeier’s estranged husband, Gene Lodermeier, was responsible for her disappearance, but he was never charged in the case and died in 2013.

Seven months after Ellabeth Lodermeier disappeared, three of her credit cards were found at a railway station in Manitoba, Canada. Police believe that lead was a red herring. The discovery of Lodermeier’s purse and pocketbook near the Big Sioux River renewed hope, but no new developments have occurred in the case in the 27 years since.

Months after the Argus Leader ran a lookback into Lodermeier’s disappearance in 2018, police said five new leads had come in, including three with “brand-new information.”

Her family and police hope to find her remains and give her a proper burial.

Lodermeier’s niece, Elizabeth Crow, hopes the search brings closure to her family.

“I hope that something comes out of it,” Crow said. “I really hope we can have some kind of closure.”


Information from: Argus Leader, http://www.argusleader.com