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Monday, May 2, 2016

Swift autopsy report complete, details remain sealed

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The final autopsy report on Karen Swift is complete and in the hands of Dyer County Sheriff's investigators as they are moving forward with their murder investigation to bring her killer to justice.

Dyer County Sheriff Jeff Box would not comment on the findings of the report due to the details being sealed under court order, but he did say investigators feel the results will be helpful in their "homicide investigation".

"With the autopsy results completed, we can continue to advance the investigation," said Box.

He and his investigators received the report several days ago and they have been busy working on the case since then.

In a court order, dated Dec. 21, 2011, Dyer County Circuit Court Judge Lee Moore ordered the autopsy report not be subject to disclosure as a public document. Its contents are to remain confidential pending the indictment and arrest of those responsible or the closure of the investigation.

Swift's body was sent to the medical examiner's office on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011, after it was discovered by a cemetery caretaker near Bledsoe Cemetery in Dyer County. The location was approximately three miles from Swift's residence on Willie Johnson Road where she lived with her husband and two of their children. Swift had been missing since Oct. 30, 2011, and her identity was confirmed on Dec. 11, 2011, using her dental records. Afterward, Box stated his department was pursuing the case as a murder investigation due to the placement of Swift's body and apparent injuries to it.

Box noted the four and one-half month-long investigation has produced numerous items requiring analysis and they are still waiting on a few more results to come back.

"This has been an investigation which has developed a lot of evidence that required lab work," said Box. "We have received lab results from much of the evidence submitted, but are still awaiting DNA processing and results of additional evidence that has been sent to the TBI Crime Lab."

Box said each piece of evidence they have collected has yielded valuable information as they build their case.

"We do feel we have recovered evidence that will be beneficial in completing the investigation," said Box. "Our agency, working along with the TBI, will continue the investigation to attempt to gather all possible evidence that will be beneficial in seeking arrest and conviction of the person responsible for this homicide."

Karen Swift, a 44-year-old mother of four was reportedly last seen early Sunday morning, Oct. 30, by her husband David Swift at their home on Willie Johnson Road after she had returned there from a Halloween party. Her white 2004 Nissan Murano was later found abandoned on Sunday, Oct. 30, on Millsfield Highway near the intersection of Harness Road with a flat tire. Her body found on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011, near Bledsoe Cemetery in Dyer County by a cemetery caretaker. An autopsy was performed on Karen Swift's body by the Shelby County Medical Examiner's Office in Memphis and she was buried in Pocahontas, Ark. on Feb. 11.

The Dyer County Sheriff's Department is still asking anyone who had contact with Karen Swift before her disappearance, recalls seeing anyone near her vehicle on Millsfield Highway on Oct. 30, or has any other information about the case to contact the Dyer County Sheriff's Office at 731-285-2802 or 1-800-TBI-FIND.

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I'm afraid that this is going to become a "cold case". Like many murders in small towns the crimes never get solved due to incompetence, sloppy police work,poor evidence gathering, etc. I pray that justice is served in her death.

-- Posted by Dude2010 on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 9:33 AM

why is this news? nothing new here. just more secrecy about the case. Is an arrest imminent? how many POIs are there? Do you have a primary Suspect?

Was she wearing clothes when she was found? Was there evidence of sexual assault?

These are all questions typically asked and answered by LE during an investigation. Why all the silence?

Is this a cold case?

-- Posted by dianabee on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 10:58 AM


-- Posted by time2change on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 11:25 AM


Since there is so much sloppy police work in this town why don't you go and solve the murder??? It seems they are doing a wonderful job. I am actually proud that they are not "leaking" information. Usually in small towns everyone would be gossiping about the findings in the autopsy because your brother's girlfriends ex 3 rd cousin cleans toilets at the police station.

Does it matter if she was sexually abused? Naked? No! It matters that she is deceased and that someone is still out there! It is even worse that someone probably knows what happened but just won't say. I think we should focus on supporting our local law enforcement and their efforts to solve this case rather than focusing on the the negative or petty details!

-- Posted by mrsmac2010 on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 11:36 AM

I can't believe someone would want this beautiful mother of 4 dead.

someones head should roll for this...

-- Posted by seniorcomment on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 12:02 PM

I believe LE has been doing a very good job and deserve the continued support of the community regarding this case. I just worry that whoever did it might split for Canada or Mexico while LE is "working" on it. I think the public should have more info than what has been given such as "cause of death" (e.g loss of blood; asphyxiation; hypothermia) but not the details on the manner or death (e.g. blunt force injury, gunshot, stabbing, strangling, smothering, etc) unless, of course, an arrest is imminent in which case cause of death will come out soon thereafter. I think people fear a situation where the ME report is complete but no info is forthcoming from LE for years, that happens too much anywhere these days. I am hoping that doesn't happen in this case.

-- Posted by LisaDe on Tue, Mar 20, 2012, at 10:38 PM

mrsmac2010: Did I say anything about her being "sexually abused" or "naked"? No I didn't! Why are YOU focused on this aspect? Did I knock the local authorities? No! I simply said I'm afraid this may end up a cold case, which happens even in major cities with much bigger police departments than Dyersburg. It just seems if the DPD are doing such a "wonderful job" we'd

have the killer(s) in custody.

I did say many small town police departments are "incompetent" or "sloppy" in investigative work, but I NEVER said DPD was like this! I'm afraid I am not able to help solve the crime since I'm not allowed to share in the evidence.

Why are YOU so defensive? And why are you attacking me for simply make some normal observations? I am supporting the local law enforcement and as you can see I said that I "pray justice is done in her death". Does that sound mean or un-supportive to you other people?

Perhaps if you would actually read my post instead of jumping to conclusions you might learn something...

-- Posted by Dude2010 on Thu, Mar 22, 2012, at 1:36 AM

I see where a deputy was arrested for sexual battery and what not. maybe they should look into him about what may have happened to Karen. Just a thought.

-- Posted by LadyKim on Mon, Mar 26, 2012, at 8:04 AM

It is obvious at this point that they will never solve this case. Either they don't have the evidence, or they are too stupid to process it. They used the Coroners office as a scape-goat for about 4 months. Now they have the "results" in their hands, and they still don't have a clue.

If they would just simply provide the locals with what evidence they have, what they suspect, and a timeline of events......this case would be solved in about 15 minutes. However, their ego's won't let them do that.

Please make up a manila envelope, stamp it "UNSOLVED" , put all the paperwork in there and file it next to the Holly Bobo file. You guys get out there and keep generating revenue with speeding fines, parking tickets and petty fines issued on the locals-------that's all you are good for, generating revenue for your paycheck.

-- Posted by uncle_fiesty on Tue, Mar 27, 2012, at 9:52 PM

I check here every single day ... there is never anything new on this case. I have no idea what is going on behind the scenes , but I would hope that some day I return here to see that the person who took this womans life has been caught. They claim they have evidence that they have not made public ( as they should not let all be known ) but for goodness sake let everyone know wether or not it was random or if they think that she was targeted . If I lived in dyersburg or anywhere near , I would be worried that there is a murderer out there possibly looking for another victim. God Bless her family

-- Posted by LadyKim on Tue, Apr 10, 2012, at 9:24 AM

the county sheriff should run for the county line and stay there!

-- Posted by closerlook on Fri, Apr 13, 2012, at 7:13 PM

Keep in mind that most women who disappear and are murdered are almost always the victim of domestic violence, and their chances of survival is even slimmer when they are in the process of divorcing their husbands and dividing up the community property and where there is to be a fight over who get the children.

This case is no different but if authorities can't determine this then I believe there will never be an arrest in this case.




-- Posted by Cvt6702 on Wed, Apr 18, 2012, at 3:29 AM

At this point, they really just need to come out and say either that they don't have enough evidence to make an arrest or that they are going to make one in the near future. It's not knowing for sure that's driving everyone's frustrations. Just tell it like it is already. That will give some kind of closure, at least people could deal with knowing one way or the other.

-- Posted by raspberrie on Wed, Apr 18, 2012, at 8:00 PM

An arrest could come as early as this week.

They know who did it. The TBI met Monday April 30th.with the sheriff department to get everything in Order to make a

An arrest. They have accounted for all but a 45 minute window. This murder was done by a man living in Dyer County.

-- Posted by inside on Wed, May 2, 2012, at 11:26 PM


Are you sure about that ? I haven't heard any of this before

-- Posted by LadyKim on Fri, May 4, 2012, at 9:07 AM


-- Posted by inside on Fri, May 4, 2012, at 4:09 PM


-- Posted by inside on Fri, May 4, 2012, at 4:12 PM

i will beleive that when i hear about that

-- Posted by jc in dyersburg on Mon, May 7, 2012, at 1:12 PM

inside, have not heard anything yet? just talk

-- Posted by jc in dyersburg on Sun, May 13, 2012, at 6:18 AM

It's coming. They may wait to school is out to make the arrest. That should tell you who did it. Also they just got the rest of the lab results. The suspect has hired the lawyer who got Mary Winkler off. My info comes from someone involved in the investigation.

-- Posted by inside on Mon, May 14, 2012, at 12:09 AM

When is school out ?

-- Posted by LadyKim on Mon, May 14, 2012, at 9:47 AM

last of May.

-- Posted by inside on Mon, May 14, 2012, at 3:01 PM

Watch channel 5 news tonight.

-- Posted by inside on Tue, May 15, 2012, at 7:48 PM

What happened to the latest story and posts that were on here last week ??

-- Posted by LadyKim on Tue, May 22, 2012, at 10:25 AM

school is out, we are now into june----still nothing but silence.

-- Posted by closerlook on Sun, Jun 10, 2012, at 12:31 PM

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Karen Swift search, Nov. 19, 2011