During the continued exploratory dig at the landfill on Wednesday, Sept. 18, detectives and Solid Waste Utility crews found what appeared to be human remains. CPD has been working with a professional anthropologist who confirmed that what was found is, in fact, human remains.
"The remains and evidence located with the remains are consistent with what we expected to find when looking for Megan," Columbia Police Chief Geoff Jones said.
The Columbia Police Department cannot say with certainty that these remains belong to Megan Shultz. The identification process will be extensive and will include DNA testing.
"We've been in constant communication with Megan's family and we keep them in our thoughts and prayers as the identification process proceeds," Jones said.
The landfill dig will continue with the hope that crews find additional evidence that will assist in the investigation.
"I want to extend my thanks and appreciation to the CPD detectives and officers, as well as the Solid Waste Utility team, for their dedication and assistance. This work has been emotionally and physically draining for those involved," Jones said. "This is truly a team effort to hopefully find evidence for the case and to bring closure for Megan's family and friends."
Anyone with information regarding Megan's disappearance and this case is asked to contact the Columbia Police Department at 573.874.7652 or CrimeStoppers at 573.875.TIPS to remain anonymous.
On Aug. 4, 2019, Keith Alan Comfort turned himself into the Lake Geneva, Wisconsin Police Department and made voluntary statements to them that implicated himself in the murder of Shultz, who was his wife at the time. Comfort indicated that he disposed of Shultz's remains in a garbage dumpster in the 1700 block of Amelia Street in August 2006.
The Columbia Police Department, in conjunction with the City of Columbia Solid Waste Utility, began an exploratory dig at the Columbia landfill on Monday, Sept. 9, in an attempt to find the locations in use during the period of time Comfort indicated.
Through the use of annual topography, Solid Waste staff members were able to narrow down the area to a 14-acre section of the more than 100-acre landfill in use in 2006. Through the use of operating records, those 14 acres were further narrowed to a 3-to-4-acre area most likely in use in August 2006.
During the exploratory dig last week, detectives were able to locate dated items in the landfill. With finding some dated materials, the goal became to define boundaries for further exploration.
Previous press releases:
CPD, City of Columbia Utilities hold press conference in relation to 2006 disappearance of Megan Shultz
UPDATE: Information regarding Megan Shultz investigation
Suspect arrested regarding open missing person case from 2006