70 women killed in 30 years
Donald Study set record for ‘professional killer’ in USA
Sabitri Roy: In 30 years in the United States, 70 women were killed by Donald Dean Study, a resident of the state of Iowa, set a record for the “American professional killer”. His daughter made such explosive allegations against her father. Not only that, the complainant woman and her siblings also helped in burying the dead bodies under the ground, She said.
Authorities are investigating the allegations of a woman who says her now-deceased father killed dozens of women that she helped bury on the family’s Iowa property.
Speaking with Newsweek, Lucy Studey says her late dad Donald Dean Studey, who died in 2013 at age 75, killed 50 to 70 women, most of whom were sex workers, over the course of three decades. She alleges that as a child, she and her siblings were forced to help him dispose of the bodies in a well near Thurman, Iowa.
“I know where the bodies are buried,” Lucy told the outlet. “He would just tell us we had to go to the well, and I knew what that meant.”
Lucy alleges Donald would stab, shoot or strike the heads of his victims inside a trailer on their property.
After the alleged killings, she said they would transport the bodies to the area of the well, via wheelbarrow during the hotter months and toboggan in the winter. They would then cover them with dirt and lye, according to the outlet.
“Every time I went to the well or into the hills, I didn’t think I was coming down. I thought he would kill me because I wouldn’t keep my mouth shut,” she said.
Speaking with KETV-TV Monday, Fremont County Sheriff Kevin Aistrope said Lucy’s claims are being investigated.
“We are actively investigating this, and who wouldn’t? I would hope any sheriff’s office in the state, if somebody came across like this, would [say,] ‘Ok, we’re going to investigate it,'” Aistrope told the station.
“We have a scene, but we don’t know whether it’s a crime scene,” said Aistrope. “We don’t have victims, bodies. Nothing.”
However, on Friday, two cadaver dogs detected the scent of human remains across four different sites on the property, Newsweek reports.
“Today told me there is the odor of human decomposition in the area,” the dogs’ handler Jim Peters told the outlet. “More work needs to be done to confirm that…I feel pretty good about what I saw from the dogs, but I’m not going to hang my hat on that.”
“I really think there’s bones there,” Aistrope added, according to the outlet. “It’s hard for me to believe that two dogs would hit in the exact same places and be false. We don’t know what it is. The settlers were up there. There was Indian Country up there as well, but I tend to believe Lucy.”
“According to the dogs, this is a very large burial site,” he said.
According to the Des Moines Register, authorities first began investigating Lucy’s claims in 2021, after she contacted the sheriff’s office at least twice.
She allegedly told authorities her dad, who died in 2013, would hunt for his victims some 40 miles away in the Omaha, Neb., area, and murder “five or six” women per year, before dumping their bodies in or around the 90-foot-deep well on their Iowa property.
“If we had had 70 missing persons from Omaha-Council Bluffs, we would have picked up on that. So, if there is 70 people, they’re not all from here,” Aistrope told the paper.
Newsweek reports that over the years, Lucy tried to alert teachers, church leaders, and law enforcement. But her claims were not investigated by authorities.
“No one would listen to me,” Lucy said, per the outlet. “The teacher said family matters should be handled as a family, and law enforcement has said they couldn’t trust the memory of a child. I was just a kid then, but I remember it all.”
The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is assisting in the investigation.