Officials expect homicide ruling after discovering woman’s remains

Batesville Daily Guard 2-14-1977

The death of a Garland County deputy sheriff whose skeletal remains were found Sunday is expected to be ruled a homicide.

The deputy, Linda Louise Edwards, 29, had been missing since Aug. 22.

Authorities are waiting for the medical examiner’s office to determine the cause of death, but Lt. Roy Smith of the sheriff’s office said he presumed the death would be ruled a homicide.

Most of skeletal remains of Mrs. Edwards were found Sunday in a wooded area about eight miles southeast of Hot Springs. Authorities say Mrs. Edwards was identified through her dental work.

A search of the Jack Mountain area began Sunday after two wolf hunters found two bones in the area. The wolf hunters called Garland County authorities who had the bones analyzed by two doctors.

Both doctors said the bones were human, possibly female.

The search party found the bones scattered over a 100-yard radius. They also found some personal effects, including a shoe and a ring.

Smith said the bones were not buried.

Smith said Mrs. Edwards, a fully commissioned deputy sheriff who operated the office radio, disappeared in the early morning hours of Aug. 22. He said her car was found about 4 a.m. August 22 on Arkansas 290 a few miles south of Hot Springs.

Smith said there was nothing at the scene where the car was found to indicate foul play.

Mrs. Edwards had worked as a radio dispatcher in the sheriff’s office for about six months before her disappearance. She left her two children with a baby sitter Aug. 21 and was reported as missing by the sitter when she did not return for the children.

(Mrs. Edwards was the sister of Guard managing editor, Roy Ockert Jr.)

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