Possible Evidence Found In Homicide Case

Estherville, Iowa — Authorities say they have found shell casings, projectiles, and a firearm that may have been used in the murder of 19-year-old Thomas Bortvit in Estherville.
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Emmet County Sheriff Mike Martens reports that a multi-agency investigation by the Emmet County Sheriff’s Office, Estherville Police Department and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is taking place. He says the Iowa Office of State Medical Examiner in Ankeny has released their preliminary report. They say that the manner of death of Thomas Bortvit has been ruled to be a homicide.

Sheriff Martens also advises that search warrants have been carried out in regard to the investigation. During the searches, shell casings, projectiles and a firearm believed to have been used in the homicide of Bortvit were recovered.

These items have been forwarded to Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Criminalistics Laboratory for analysis, according to Sheriff Martens. He says that the suspect charged in connection with the homicide, 18-year-old Lee Samuel Christensen of Estherville remains in custody in the Hennepin County, Minnesota Jail.

The Sheriff says Christensen has waived extradition to Emmet County and is expected to be returned to Emmet County in the near future.

He says the investigation continues.

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