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We are not surprised by the quick and heavy response to a request from law enforcement concerning the abduction and murder of two Evansdale cousins.

Virtually everyone in the Cedar Valley is looking forward to the day when the perpetrators of those crimes are identified.

Recently local police traveled to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to discuss the investigation into the cases of Lyric Cook Morrissey, 10, and Elizabeth Collins, 8.

The bodies were found by hunters in December 2012, several months after the cousins disappeared while riding their bikes in Evansdale.

Last week, police again went public in asking residents for help. The isolated area known as “Seven Bridges” in Bremer County was at issue.

“Every single person in the room at the National Center remarked on the importance of Seven Bridges Wildlife Area in this investigation,” Evansdale Police Chief Kent Smock said. “Unless you knew that area, you’re not going to just happen across it.”

Seven bridges is a 125-acre wildlife area between Denver, Readlyn and Fairbank -- about 22 miles north of Meyers Lake, where the girls’ bicycles were found July 13, 2012.

“We are asking that everyone think about anyone they know who is familiar with Seven Bridges,” Smock said. “At some point in their life, they may have hunted there. They may have fished there. At some point in their life, they may have camped there. They may have gone there to party when they were younger.”

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Calls came pouring in. Smock said more than 100 people called within hours of the press conference. The volume has been so great the police have used city staff, retired officers and other help to answer phones.

All data will be compiled, evaluated and given to investigators.

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“We’ve made it known from the beginning that there’s going to be no stone left unturned in this,” said Smock. “We follow up on every lead that comes in.”

We have appreciated the hard work of local law enforcement -- and those involved at state and federal levels. Their diligence has been readily apparent from the beginning. We appreciate their dedication in continued efforts in this open investigation.

A $150,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case. Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers also has a $20,500 reward for anyone coming forward with information that simply leads to an arrest.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Evansdale Police tip line at (319) 232-6682 or Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers at (855) 300-8477.

Meanwhile, like everyone else in the Cedar Valley, we hope and await the day when the person or persons responsible for these acts meet justice.

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