Cold Case on Deadly Fire Reopens after 27 Years

Published 02/08 2012 11:15PM

Updated 02/09 2012 10:24AM

(PHELPS CITY, Mo.) Twenty-seven years have gone by since a fire killed Jeff McGeehee, 21; Robyn Lynn Bess, 20; and Roger Kent Bess,15.

The Atchison County Sheriff's Department is taking a closer look at the events the night of the fire on June 1, 1985.

"Over the years, there has been rumors pop up and people have been talking that this may not have been an accidental fire," said Deputy Steve Whittington of the Atchison County Sheriff's Department.

The fire started a mile and half south of Phelps City, Missouri around two in the morning. A few of the victims' friends were at the home shortly before the fire started.

Investigators have already interviewed possible leads and believe there is still one more loose end.

"There was a possibility that there was a fight that the McGeehee boy was involved in on or about the time of the fire," said Whittington.

They want to find out what really happened back in 1985 and give the family some closure after the rumors started spreading.

"If it was accidental, fine," said Whittington. "We'll go on and end all of the rumors going around. If it wasn't accidental, then we would want to pursue if further if we can as far as we can. The family, they're wanting to find out what happened. But at the same time, it is dredging up a lot of bad memories."

If anyone has information to the events the night of the fire, they can call 660-744-6271 or CRIMESTOPPERS at 877-328-8477.

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