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Woman, Sons Apprehended In Connection With 2021 Murder Of Husband Found Under Shed
Brenda Rasmussen initially told authorities that her husband, Jerry Rasmussen, left their home following an argument and hadn't been seen in weeks.
A woman and her two sons wanted in Washington state for her husband’s murder have been apprehended in Arizona.
Brenda Rasmussen, 55, Andrew Jones, 31, and Danny Jones, 34, were arrested in Fort Mohave, Arizona on Tuesday, according to a statement from the Stevens County Sheriff’s Office in Washington. U.S. Marshals assisted in their capture after authorities named them as suspects in the murder of Brenda’s husband, Jerry Rasmussen, 65.
All three were charged with rendering criminal assistance under first-degree murder.
On Sept. 27, 2021, Brenda Rasmussen of Stevens County reported her husband missing, telling deputies Jerry had left their Valley-area home several weeks prior and hadn’t contacted her, according to the sheriff’s office. Brenda explained the pair had recently argued, and Jerry was known to leave for extended periods from time to time.
Deputies grew suspicious upon their conversations with non-local relatives and transferred the case to detectives. Detectives quickly named the mother and sons as “persons of interest” and conducted the investigation as a possible homicide. At the time, Danny Jones lived with the Rasmussens, while Andrew had an address in Arizona.
“She told neighbors living around here that Jerry went to California on a business trip and that she hoped that he would be alright,” a neighbor told KREM 2.
Stevens County investigators obtained a search warrant for the Rasmussen property in November. By then, Brenda and Danny were gone. According to court documents obtained by KREM 2, Brenda and her sons initially cooperated with detectives but severed contact before fleeing on Oct. 1, 2021.
“During the service of the warrant, cadaver dogs were used to conduct a sniff of the area, and the dogs indicated the presence of odor of human remains coming from the area of a new storage shed recently placed on the property,” the statement read. “Other items of evidence were also recovered from the house, which Brenda Rasmussen and Danny Jones had since vacated.”
One month later, authorities returned to the Rasmussen property with the help of a shed transport company and excavation rentals. According to KREM 2, searchers came upon a layer of aluminum foil, followed by another layer of plastic wrap several feet below before finally revealing the body of Jerry Rasmussen.
The Spokane County Media Examiner determined Jerry was shot, according to KREM 2. He was buried on the property three months earlier.
Arrest warrants were issued for Brenda and Danny, as well as Brenda’s son, Andrew Jones.
Leads brought Stevens County investigators to Arizona, where they requested the assistance of the U.S. Marshals Service and the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office.
"On Jan. 22, 2022, The U.S. Marshal Service received information that the three suspects were possibly hiding in Mohave, AZ," the U.S. Marshals said in a statement emailed to Oxygen.com. "Deputy U.S. Marshals and Task Force members conducted a rigorous investigation and surveillance attempting to locate the suspects."
The U.S. Marshals stated they "served simultaneous search warrants on a place of business and a residence associated with the suspects."
All three suspects were arrested in Fort Mohave and booked into the Mohave County Jail.
“It’s still kind of spooky for me,” another neighbor told KREM 2. “I think about it all the time, and how short life is because Jerry worked so hard, and I’m sure he was looking for an easier life later.”
Authorities did not indicate a motive behind the killing and maintain that this is an ongoing investigation. All three suspects await extradition back to Washington state.