Police Say the Bodies of Two Women Killed in an Oklahoma Custody Fight Were Found in a Freezer That Had Been Buried

Police Say the Bodies of Two Women Killed in an Oklahoma Custody Fight Were Found in a Freezer That Had Been Buried

Newly released search warrants say that the bodies of two women who went missing while driving between Kansas and Oklahoma during a custody fight were found buried in a cattle pasture leased by one of the five suspects in their deaths. They were found in a freezer.

The bodies of Veronica Butler, 27, and Jilian Kelley, 39, were found while police were looking into a new pile of dirt on land leased by Tad Cullum. Cullum is one of five people charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of kidnapping, and one count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

“A chest freezer was dug up and opened on April 14, 2024.” “The bodies of Butler and Kelley were found in the chest freezer,” the search order says.

The court papers don’t say how Butler and Kelley were killed.

Cops have also charged Tifany Adams, 54, who shared care of Butler’s children and was the grandmother of those children; Cole and Cora Twombly, 50 and 44, who are married; and Paul Grice, 31.

Court papers say Adams and her boyfriend Cullum planned to kill the Twomblys because Butler and Adams, who is the grandmother of Butler’s two children, were fighting over custody.

In court, Special Agent Jason Ott of the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation said that all of the suspects knew each other through “a religious anti-government group.” The five suspects have not yet said how they feel about the case.

CNN has asked the lawyers for the suspects to respond.

Lost women were on their way to see their kids.
The women were going from Hugoton, Kansas, to Four Corners, Oklahoma, for Butler’s supervised visit with her children on March 30. The affidavit says they were last seen.

Their car was left abandoned near a Texas County highway. When police arrived, they found a bloody scene with “evidence of a severe injury,” according to papers that support the probable cause.

According to the statement, investigators found that Adams bought three burner phones. All of them had been pinged near where Butler’s car was found and where the women were last seen before they disappeared.

The affidavit says that cell phone data from two of the burner phones lead police to a pasture that Cullum rented out. There, they found a hole that had been dug and then filled back in.

The disturbed dirt was dug up, and two bodies were found. They were eventually identified as those of Butler and Kelley, according to the affidavit. It said that the spot was about 8.5 miles from where the abandoned car was found.

“The state of the bodies suggested they were killed by foul play,” the papers said. No more information was given about the state of the bodies.

The document also says that a stun gun was found nearby as well.

According to the court motion, prosecutors’ reasons for not letting the suspects go free on bail were that the killings were “complex and involved extensive preparation.” The prosecutors also said that some of the suspects “had the means to flee if given the chance” and “posed a grave threat to witnesses and members of the community.”

Police say that Grice told a friend that he was interested in finding out “how long DNA would last in dirt” and on clothes more than two weeks after Butler and Kelley went missing. Early this morning, an arrest document said that Grice admitted to killing and burying the victims.

The court papers don’t say how Butler and Kelley were killed.

In June, the defendants will be back in court for a status meeting. They were told to stay in jail without bond.

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