Authorities suspend search for Welch girls in SE Kansas - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

Authorities suspend search for Welch girls in SE Kansas

GALENA, Kan. (AP) -- Investigators concluded their search Thursday for two Oklahoma teenagers who went missing 5 1/2 years ago, but found no evidence any bodies had been dumped across the state line in Kansas.

Kyle Smith, director of public and governmental affairs for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, said investigators had not discovered any evidence and released the scene at 10 AM.

Investigators with cadaver dogs spent 6 1/2 hours Wednesday morning at the scene and returned to search more in the evening and again Thursday morning on the site stretching three-quarters of a mile from north to south and one-half mile from east to west, Smith said.

The special agent issued a reminder that the trash dump was private property and that the ground was dangerous because of sinkholes.

Law officers from 10 agencies led by the KBI began looking for Ashley Freeman and Lauria Bible on Tuesday using a camera to search a water-filled mine shaft. The two 16-year-olds went missing in December 1999 when Freeman's parents, Danny and Kathy Freeman, were found dead in the smoldering ruins of their Welch, Okla., trailer home.

Investigators came to the trash dump in southeastern Kansas after suspected serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones allegedly told investigators to look for the girls' bodies there.

Jones, who formerly lived in Miami in northeastern Oklahoma, remains jailed in Mobile, Ala., where he faces a murder charge. He also faces charges for slayings in Louisiana and Georgia, but has not been charged in the Oklahoma case.

Smith said the investigation into the girls' disappearance would continue.
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