Estherville Police Investigate Death Of Teen – UPDATE

Estherville, Iowa — An Estherville teen faces 1st Degree Murder charges in connection with the shooting death of a second Estherville teen.

Emmet County Sheriff’s authorities say that an investigation into the death of 19-year old Thomas Bortvit resulted in 1st Degree Murder charges being filed against 18-year old Lee Samuel Christensen.

Authorities say that an arrest warrant was issued, with Christensen being located in Minneapolis, where he was arrested and taken to the Hennepin County Jail where he is being held pending extradition back to Iowa.

Bortvit was last seen Saturday evening, and his vehicle was located later in the day Saturday.  Estherville authorities, along with the help of volunteers, searched throughout the entire southern portion of Estherville.  Police and Emmet County Sheriff’s officers located Bortvit’s body late Sunday afternoon, and immediately launched an investigation into his disappearance and death.

Emmet County Sheriff’s Office personnel, as well as Estherville Police, and agents from the Iowa Bureau of Criminal Investigation  conducted the investigation.

The Emmet County Sheriff’s Office says that the investigation is continuing.



The death of a teenager from northwest Iowa is under investigation.
The Estherville Police Department posted a message on their Facebook page Sunday morning asking for the public’s assistance in locating 19-year-old Thomas Bortvit of Estherville. Bortvit had not been seen since Saturday evening. Bortvit’s vehicle was located later in the day.

The Estherville Police Department, with the help of volunteers, then conducted a ground search beginning in the area of 6th Avenue South in Estherville and stretching throughout the entire south side of the city of Estherville.

Police and the Emmet County Sheriff’s Department located the body of Thomas Bortvit late Sunday afternoon and are in the process of conducting a thorough investigation into his death and disappearance. The agencies are being assisted by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.

Story from Radio Iowa