Public Safety

Remains 'definitively' not those of Jodi Huisentruit

Couple found woman's bones in wooded area near Mason CIty

Jodi Huisentruit
Jodi Huisentruit

MASON CITY — An unidentified couple who was looking for a pet in a wooded field near Mason City about two weeks ago stumbled upon the remains of a woman who likely died between five and 15 years ago, law enforcement said Thursday.

The Cerro Gordo County Sheriff’s Office was alerted after receiving a 911 call about 1 p.m. May 20 about the skeletal human remains in the 22000 block of 275th Street in rural Mason City, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said in a news release Wednesday.

Law enforcement is not releasing the couple’s identity or audio of the 911 call, Cerro Gordo County Sheriff Kevin Pals said Thursday.

The remains, which were found on private property, were taken to the Iowa State Medical Examiner’s Office in Ankeny for an autopsy, which was performed May 23. Officials are not releasing the results of the autopsy at this time, according to the DCI.

news release from the Iowa DCI.

“We have no manner or cause of death at this time,” Pals said.

An anthropologist determined the remains are female and may have been there for between five to 15 years. The woman is believed to have been between the ages of 20 to 45 and between 5 feet to 5 feet, 7 inches tall.

Investigators and forensic specialists were able to get partial dental records from the remains.

Officials said a forensic odontologist “definitively determined” the remains are not those of Jodi Huisentruit, the KIMT television anchor who went missing in 1995.

“The sad part is that getting the DNA with the dental records could take three months to a year,” Pals said.

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A neighbor, Paul Hanson, said he thought it was “a training thing” when he saw DCI and sheriff’s officers searching the property.

Hanson said the rural gravel road doesn’t get much traffic.

“We get some traffic from the college, you’ll see some beer cans out here from kids drinking,” Hanson said. “Usually — if I see a car all week, if any.”

The area is about 2 miles east of North Iowa Area Community College.

Pals said the department has been receiving calls from the families of loved ones who have been missing.

“We’ve been telling them to go to namus.gov,” Pals said. From there, dental records can be submitted and compared.

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