40 years after 3 Kansans killed, still no answers

LAWRENCE, Kansas (AP) — Forty years after three Kansans were found shot to death in a car near Ottawa, it’s still unclear why the killings happened, or who is responsible.

Sixty-year-old Hazel Avery, her 19-year-old son, Steve; and a family friend, 23-year-old Gary Longfellow, were shot execution-style in her car.

Police say Steve Avery had been hitchhiking from Iola to Lawrence along Highway 59 in March 1973. He was going to testify on behalf of a friend in a Jefferson County custody case.

He called his mother for a ride from a pay phone in Richmond, and she and Longfellow went to get him. Their bodies were found two days later.

Franklin County Sheriff’s Detective Mike Reed says he’s still looking for leads in the case.

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