Connie Goodwin never imagined that she would have to bury her son, Edward. After his murder, he knew that she needed to bury him the way she had brought him into this world: whole.
But it wasn’t that simple. The Butler County Sheriff’s Office found just 40 percent of the remains of 32-year-old Edward Goodwin in a pond in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, in 2017, two years after he was killed and his body was wrapped with barbed wire and concrete blocks to secure it. he would sink
Forty percent wasn’t enough for Mrs. Goodwin, but it was enough to make a case against her killers. The sheriff’s office went ahead with the investigation and promised Mrs Goodwin, her husband Ed and Edward’s son Gage, who was 15 at the time, that they would eventually return to retrieve the rest of the body, Ms said. .Goodwin. The independent.
For two long years, Ms. Goodwin and her family waited for closure, but the police version of justice fell short, she said. The two men who took her son’s life were arrested, prosecuted and convicted, and yet 60 percent of Edward remained at the bottom of that partially drained pond.
“Or else the time was [too] hot or [too] cold, or there was no manpower, [or they were] waiting at the highway department to get caught,” Ms. Goodwin said in an interview on Friday. Finally, after five years of empty promises from the Butler County Sheriff, she decided to drain the pond to retrieve the rest of Edward’s remains.
“We had to do it, I wasn’t going to spend another winter without finding my son,” he said.
On September 17, Mrs. Goodwin, her husband, and grandson went to the County Road 572 pond with the pumping equipment they had rented the day before.
“We were there at 8am, we turned on the pump at 8:30am and by 10:30am we were seeing my son’s bones sticking out of the water. We kept pumping and then we saw the cement blocks and the copper wire,” he said.
Goodwin then called Butler County Coroner Jim Akers, who rushed to the scene and waded into the mud to help Gage retrieve the bones. It only took five hours to find the rest, he said.
“When I texted Akers on Saturday, he was shocked and was on the scene within 10 minutes,” Ms Goodwin said.
Mrs Goodwin said it was “a sad day and also a relieving day”. A day she had been waiting for seven long years of unanswered pleas and phone calls to Mark Dobbs of the Butler County Sheriff.
Excuses for why the department couldn’t recover the remains were varied, Goodwin said.
“We were told that there was no more debris in that pond because the animals carried it into fox burrows,” he said. the independent. “The last time I spoke to Mark Dobbs was August 29, 2021. I’ve called and called and he’s never in the office they say.”
Ms. Goodwin said that after sending several messages to Mr. Dobb’s Facebook account, he was blocked from sending any more. the independents requests for comment to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office have not yet been answered.
“Nothing happened, then the day before Veterans Day last year they went and pumped for four hours and told us they’d be back in the morning and they never showed up,” Ms Goodwin said.
The sheriff’s office said they didn’t drain the pond again because they didn’t have the necessary equipment to perform the recovery. People reported for the first time.
“The highway department has all the equipment it needs and uses [to recover remains.] I called the main guy and he told me he hadn’t talked to Mark Dobbs. They said everything [the sheriff] all you have to do is get an order and it will be done,” said Ms. Goodwin.
“I was promised then and in the so-called trial on August 9, 2021 that we will have the remains of our son in two weeks if we accept the agreement with the prosecution. [the killers took].”
Two people have been charged with Edward’s murder, his once close friends Ricky Hurt and Eldred Smit. Their charges were downgraded to second-degree murder and they were sentenced to 18 and 12 years in prison, KWOC reported.
Determined to close a painful chapter in her life and bring peace to her son’s soul, Mrs. Goodwin and her husband rented the pumping equipment they needed to drain the pond, which was significantly smaller after authorities drained it for first time in 2017.
“I couldn’t bury him until I had everything I could find. Forty percent was not enough. And I couldn’t live with knowing where the rest were when I knew because of the findings in 2017,” said Ms Goodwin. the independent.
Ms. Goodwin said no one from the Butler County Sheriff’s Office has contacted her to apologize for the delay in finding the rest of Edward’s remains.
“I haven’t heard from anyone except the coroner, who wasn’t the coroner back then.
On Friday, Mrs. Goodwin received all of Edward’s remains from the funeral home.
Though she isn’t ready to bury her son yet, Goodwin said, she is relieved to be able to offer closure to her husband and grandson.