5 YEARS LATER: Multiple leads and confessions in the Lyric and E - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

5 YEARS LATER: Multiple leads and confessions in the Lyric and Elizabeth case

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It's now been five years since two little lives were taken too soon. Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins went missing near Meyers Lake in Evansdale now five years ago.

"I just figured they were, took longer, they stopped at somebody's house or a park or something like that," said Drew Collins, Elizabeth’s father.

But Lyric and Elizabeth never came home. Shortly after they went missing hundreds of people came together to search for the two cousins.

"It feels like just yesterday. It's hard to believe it's been five years," said Collins.

Elizabeth's father, Drew isn't the only one looking for answers. It also bothers Evansdale Police Chief Jeff Jensen.

"I would like to know what happened. I want to know," said Jensen.

Jensen says they get about three to four call a week and those tips will pick up on the anniversaries.

Lead DCI agent with the Lyric and Elizabeth case, Mike Roehrkasse says a couple of months ago they decided to do what he's calling a "hard reset" and start looking from the beginning.

"It's a high probability that the person that did this is somewhere in our case report at the very beginning. So we've really gone back and just revisited those things," said Roehrkasse.

In fact, he says they have actually heard two confessions to the murder. Roehrkasse says they knew those people weren't responsible because they didn't know many details about the case.

"They try to confess to it and we were able to with all the information that we held back about the scene and things that we know and that the abductor knows we were kind of able to put those to rest," said Roehrkasse.

Years ago, Roehrkasse and his team looked into a possible connection with Michael Klunder. Klunder is responsible for kidnapping two girls near Dayton. Klunder murdered one of the girls, Kathlynn Shepard. He ended up then killing himself. Police believed he may have been involved in Lyric and Elizabeth’s disappearance, but he was eventually ruled out. Authorities saying they don’t believe he was in Evansdale on July 13, the day the girls went missing.  

Another man, Jeff Altmayer from Ankeny was arrested in November and accused of trying to lure a 6-year-old girl in his car near Onawa. He is also suspected in two other incidents, one happening last June near the Dike City Park. Another report came a couple weeks later near Clay Street Park in Cedar Falls. When asked about Altmayer, Roehrkasse says “The most I would say is that he is one of our leads and I will leave it at that.”

Still five years later, investigators continue to make the Lyric and Elizabeth case a priority. As for Drew Collins, he continues to wait.

"Every day I am waiting for that call from investigators. Just kind of every day you hope today is the day and when you go to bed you're like okay maybe tomorrow. It wasn't today, but maybe tomorrow," said Collins.

If anyone has any information about the disappearance and murders of Lyric and Elizabeth, call Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers at 855-300-8477 or 319-232-6682. There is a $20,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for the crime. 

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