Investigators to return to Glenwood orchard where body was found
October 22, 2009
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Investigators looking into the death of an Aurora woman whose dismembered body was found in an apple orchard near Glenwood Springs in June will take another look at the property this weekend, according to the property owner.
Kirstie Steiner said she was notified on Wednesday, by a corporal with the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office, that the office is bringing in a “specialist” from Denver to, once again, search her Canyon Creek apple orchard in connection with the murder of Janine Ann Johler. Steiner said she was told she could not be on her property for Saturday or Sunday, while the search is conducted.
Steiner was shocked to hear that the sheriff’s office was coming back to investigate after four months.
“They assured me that no body parts were back up here, and now they are bringing in this crew,” she said.
Steiner said that the sheriff’s official mentioned “looking for other bones.” Garfield County Sheriff’s Spokeswoman Tanny McGinnis said Thursday that there was no update regarding the investigation. What investigators are looking for is wasn’t made clear.
But, being that it’s Steiner’s last weekend for harvesting her apples, she is also frustrated that the search couldn’t have been done earlier in the summer, or after this weekend.
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“They’ve had all summer to do this,” Steiner said. “I don’t know what they think they are going to find.”
Steiner said that over the summer she has worked her orchard every day, and she’s had at least one gathering of more than 100 people in previous months on the property, and people have been out almost daily since the third week of September picking apples.
“I just don’t understand,” she said. “It’s something I’ve been working hard to get up and running, and to come three days before my last weekend and tell me that I can’t be here, they’ve had all summer to be here.”
Steiner said that she’ll be open in the evenings on the weekdays next week trying to sell the rest of her apples.
Johler’s dismembered body was found in the apple orchard, just off Interstate 70 and Canyon Creek Road, west of Glenwood Springs, on June 12. A teenage orchard worker found Johler’s remains in a bag, which authorities at the time suspected may have been torn open by animals.
Her body was identified on June 19, and her last known residence was in Aurora, a suburb of Denver. She was last seen at her Aurora home on May 1, and according to reports at the time of her disappearance, the Aurora Police described her as having a diminished mental capacity.