Authorities confirm bodies found are IA cousins - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Authorities confirm bodies found are IA cousins

EVANSDALE (KWWL) - Authorities have now confirmed the two bodies found in the Seven Bridges Wildlife Area last Wednesday are Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins, who have been missing since July 13.

Chief Kent Smock of the Evansdale Police Department said the families of the girls have been notified.

Late Monday afternoon, Black Hawk County Chief Deputy Rick Abben said authorities are not classifying this a homicide case at this time.  That could change when the full autopsy report is forwarded to law enforcement after testing is completed.  

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad issued a statement Monday afternoon following the confirmation:

"It was with great sadness that I learned of the deaths of Lyric and Elizabeth. I want to commend the thousands of family members, friends and volunteers who never lost hope that they might be found alive.

"With this closure now comes great grief. The thoughts and prayers of my administration go out to those affected by this terrible tragedy.

"I want to assure everyone that our Department of Public Safety will continue working with local law enforcement officers. We want justice served for the taking of these young lives."

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EVANSDALE, Iowa (AP) - Police in Iowa say an autopsy has confirmed that two bodies found last week in a wildlife area are those of two young cousins who have been missing since last summer.

Evansdale Police Chief Kent Smock says he received confirmation Monday from the Iowa State Medical Examiner's Office that the bodies were Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook, who had been missing since July 13. The full autopsy hasn't been released to police.

Elizabeth was 8 and Lyric was 10 when they went for a bike ride and didn't return.

Hunters found their bodies last week in the Seven Bridges Wildlife Area, about 25 miles from where the girls were last seen.

Authorities closed the park while they searched for evidence but now have reopened the area.

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