Search continues for missing cousins in Iowa; bodies of missing Missouri sisters found, man charged with murder

Dylan Stableford
The Lookout

Authorities in Iowa continue the search for a pair of girls who went missing on Friday, while investigators in Missouri say they have located the bodies of two missing sisters in a field after interrogating a key suspect in their disappearance.

On Monday, the Black Hawk county sheriff's office said the search for 10-year-old Lyric R. Cook and her 8-year-old cousin, Elizabeth Collins, who were last seen riding their bikes in Evansdale on Friday, would resume. More than 1,100 volunteers—on foot, horseback and ATV—spent the weekend searching a 12-square-mile area, but found no trace of the missing girls.

According to the Quad-City Times, their bikes were found discarded near a lake. There was no indication of foul play, according to police. Elizabeth's purse and cellphone were also found nearby.

"They asked me to go for a short bike ride, and I said go ahead for a short bike ride," Wylma Cook, the girls' grandmother, told KGAN-TV. "They never came back."

The search included the "dragging" of the lake where their bikes were found, according to the Des Moines Register. "We've covered everything we can cover with civilian people," Marcus Norman, volunteer coordinator with Evansdale Fire Department, told the paper.

"It's like they vanished," Black Hawk County Sheriff's Deputy Rick Abben said Sunday. "There's just nothing."

Meanwhile, police confirmed that the bodies found late Sunday near Trimble, Mo., are those of Britny Haarup, 19, and Ashley Key, 22, who were reported missing Friday.

Platte County prosecutor Eric Zahnd told ABC's KMBC affiliate that a 31-year-old Missouri man, Clifford Miller, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder in their deaths.

At a news conference Monday, Platte County Sheriff Richard Anderson said Miller told detectives he was high on methamphetamines when he went to Haarup's home early Friday morning "with the intent of having sex with her," KMBC said. "Miller said he found Key asleep on a couch, and that after she woke up and confronted him, he beat and smothered her before going to Haarup's room and killing her."