Sale of Skelton house OKd 2011.05.11

Written by David Green.

With warming weather comes an increase in outdoor activities. Don and Bev Zuvers hope that someone out enjoying spring weather will find a clue to the disappearance of their three grandchildren, Andrew, Alexander and Tanner Skelton.

The Zuvers, along with family friend Kathye Herrera and the Rev. Donna Galloway of the Morenci United Methodist Church, met with media representatives  at the church May 3 to remind people to remain aware when they’re outside.

If anyone sees anything unusual, Don Zuvers said, don’t hesitate to call the police. Reward funds of up to $60,000 are available to pay for tips leading to the recovery of the boys.

Investigators have been unable to make any headway in solving the mystery of the boys’ disappearance. Their father, John Skelton, 39, remains in the Lenawee County jail facing charges of kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment.

Skelton insists that he gave the boys to a group called United Foster Outreach, but police consider the case a homicide.

The Zuvers urge Skelton to give investigators the information needed to enable police to find the boys.

Morenci police chief Larry Weeks said that staff from the Michigan State Police and the FBI remain dedicated to the investigation and he continues to have contact with the investigators several times a week.

Documents

A Detroit television station obtained police documents listing the items confiscated from the Skelton home following the disappearance of the boys on Thanksgiving 2010.

Station WDIV sued Lenawee District Court to obtain the documents, claiming they are of public interest. Judge James Sheridan suppressed the release of the documents until the investigation is completed or until 180 days have passed, whichever comes first, in accordance with state law.

Personnel from WDIV are not giving the source of the search warrant documents. Chief Weeks said that when items are removed during an investigation, state law requires that a list of the materials removed is kept by police, with a copy given to the court and another left at the search location.

WDIV posted barely legible copies of the search warrant documents on its website. Items include cleaning products, a hunting knife and a rope noose. Skelton claims to have tried to hang himself after giving the boys away to a group.

Chief Weeks cautions people against drawing conclusions from the list of items confiscated.

  • Front.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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