Governor Branstad says he will review Iowa’s laws on missing children in light of Wednesday’s discovery of what appear to be the bodies of two missing Evansdale girls. Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook-Morrissey disappeared in July.
Authorities are awaiting positive identification on the bodies found yesterday in a Bremer County wildlife area. The governor recalls working with Noreen Gosch on child protection laws back in the 1980s.
“Going way back to Johnny Gosch, we made some changes in legislation that try to get information out as quickly as possible when there are missing children. And I think it’s appropriate to look at — in every case — what we’ve done, what we could do differently and what we could do better,” Branstad said.
Twelve-year-old Johnny Gosch disappeared in 1982 after leaving his West Des Moines home to deliver newspapers. The governor said his review of the laws will be coupled with an examination of whether authorities did everything they could when the girls disappeared on July 13.
“In this case, you had local and state people all working very well together on this, so I want to review our laws and see if there’s more that we can do to be as effective as possible,” Branstad said.