Iowa law enforcement officials say DNA evidence links the murder of three people in 1984 to a man executed in 1997 for a separate murder.
The announcement gave the victims’ family answers to the decades old question.
“It just brings it all back, it’s good for the closure and to have an idea of what happened then,” Cindy Moyes said.
Moyes lost her mother and brother and for decades didn’t imagine today would come. “I really did not expect them to ever resolve it so it was a big surprise.”
The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said Friday that Andrew Six’s DNA was found on the clothing of one of the victims of the April 1984 murders.
The bodies of 20-year-old Justin Hook, 41-year-old Sarah Link, and 19-year-old Tina Lade were all found in separate locations within the span of a week. Justin Hook was found in Davis County, while his mother Sarah and his fiancé Tina were found in Wapello County. All three had been killed by blunt force trauma to the head.
Officials say Six was considered a suspect at the time of the murders. They say Justin Hook and Six had known each other and had some sort of issue over a vehicle purchase.
Six and his uncle Donald Petary were arrested in April of 1987 in connection with the kidnapping and murder of Kathy Allen. Allen was taken from the Ottumwa area but her body was found in Schuyler County, Missouri. Six and Petary were convicted of first degree murder in the case.
Six was sentenced to the death penalty and was executed in Missouri by lethal injection in August of 1997. Petary died while in prison in 1998.
Before Six was executed investigators tried to question him about a possible link to the triple murder case in Iowa but he was uncooperative.
Investigators with the DCI Cold Case Unit and the Davis and Wapello county sheriff’s offices renewed their investigation into the murders in August of 2011 and resubmitted evidence for DNA testing to the DCI lab.
In March of 2012 the lab found a DNA match to Andrew Six, based on samples taken from the inside of Tina Lade’s jeans.
Moyes says she’s glad her family can have closure but it also brings up all the old emotions.
“Makes me miss my family,” Moyes said. “They were loving family members and they have been sorely missed.”