(Pavillion, Wyo.) – The mystery surrounding the disappearance of Virgina Uden and her two children 33 years ago has apparently been solved. According to a news release from the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation, a Missouri couple were both arrested and charged with the deaths of their respective former spouses and the two children. Charged with first-degree murder were 71-year-old Gerald Uden and 74-year-old Alice L. Uden, both of Chadwick, Missouri.
The cold case was investigated, in part, by the Fremont County and Laramie County Sheriff’s Department and the Wyoming DCI.
According to an affidavit filed to support the charges, Gerald Uden is charged with killing his his former wife, Virginia, 32, and their two children, Richard, 12, and Reagan, 10. According to the court documents, Uden confessed to an investigator at his home Friday of taking his wife and children to an area near Pavillion and shooting them to death on Sept. 13, 1980 with a .22 caliber rifle his wife had bought so the family could go bird hunting. He then allegedly concealed the bodies.
An area on and adjacent to the Wind River Indian Reservation was extensively searched after Virginia Uden’s 1973 Ford station wagon was found crashed in a canyon near Dickinson Park southwest of Fort Washakie about a month after the three disappeared. The vehicle contained blood which was later said to be from Virginia.
A Fremont County Coroner’s investigation of Gerald Uden’s last home site in 2008 just west of Midvale on Williams Road was concentrated over the former site of pig pens at the home in search of evidence of the missing mother and children. At the time the search was said to be inconclusive although some “items of interest” were send to the Wyoming State Crime Lab for analysis. The Coroner and Sheriff’s Departments worked with students from the University of Wyoming’s Anthropology Department in sifting soil at the site.
Uden was arrested on September 27th at his home in Chadwick and has waived extradition to face the charges in Wyoming.
The arrest of Uden’s current wife Alice concerns the disappearance of her former husband 25-year-old Ronald Holtz who disappeared three months after the couple were married in 1974. Holtz’ remains were found this past month in an abandoned mine site in Laramie County. He had been shot in the head.
For photos of the missing Uden’s and reaction from the Missouri Ozarks, click here.