Missing Iowa girl’s blood found at hog confinement

Kathlynn Shepard. (Photo courtesy of Iowa Department of Public Safety)

Kathlynn Shepard. (Photo courtesy of Iowa Department of Public Safety)

Police said blood found at a hog confinement has been identified as belonging to missing Iowa teen Kathlynn Shepard.

Shepard and another girl were abducted as they walked home after getting off the school bus Monday afternoon, May 20, 2013 in Dayton, Iowa.

Police said 42-year-old Michael Klunder offered the girls a chance to earn money for mowing grass.  Klunder reportedly offered to drive the girls home so they could get permission from their parents to take the job.  Instead, Klunder drove the girls to the hog confinement in rural Pilot Mound, Iowa and told them they could use his cell phone to call their parents when they arrived at the job site.

Once at the hog confinement, Klunder reportedly took the girls into an office attached to a hog building where he zip-tied the girls’ hands.  When Klunder took Kathlynn out of the building, the other girl escaped and ran to a nearby home.

Police said Klunder’s body was found at about 8 p.m. that same night.  Autopsy results showed Klunder died by hanging himself.

Backpacks belonging to the girls were found the following day.

Blood was discovered on the ground and inside the tailgate of a pickup truck at the hog confinement.  DNA testing showed it was Kathlynn Shepard’s blood.

Anyone who saw Michael Klunder’s red Toyota pickup truck between 4:50 p.m. and 8:20 p.m. Monday, May 20 is asked to call law enforcement.

Police said this red Toyota pickup truck belonged to Michael Klunder, the man accused of kidnapping two Dayton, Iowa-area girls after they got off their school bus Monday, May 20, 2013.

Police said this red Toyota pickup truck belonged to Michael Klunder, the man accused of kidnapping two Dayton, Iowa-area girls after they got off their school bus Monday, May 20, 2013.

Police say their search for Kathlynn Shepard is focused on areas about ten miles north and northwest of the site where Klunder’s body was found.  Area farmers and residents are asked to search outbuildings, abandoned buildings and surrounding grounds or call law enforcement and a team will be dispatched to search them.

Police said bones found by searchers combing the area Thursday, May 23, were not human.

Klunder’s wife, Lisa, has “been completely cooperative with law enforcement and is not a suspect,” according to Iowa State Police.

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