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Husband faces murder charge in killing of wife

By Zack Steen

zsteen@dailycorinthian.com

A nearly 15 month search for the killer of a 43-year-old Iuka woman is over.

Tishomingo officials on Wednesday charged Russell Lanier with the first-degree murder of his wife, Susie Lanier.

According to a statement released by Tishomingo County Sheriff John Daugherty, new evidence in the case lead law enforcement to Russell Lanier, who remains in custody on a $500,000 bond.

Susie Lanier was first reported missing in June 2017 by her step-father and Russell Lanier.

"A search was conducted immediately in the area with several volunteers and family members, but Susie was not found," said Daugherty in the statement.

In August 2017, the sheriff received a call from a man who found what appeared to be a human skull on his property. Once processed through the crime lab, dental records were matched and it was determined that the skull was that of Susie Lanier. Another search resulted in the discovery of clothing identified by family as belonging to Susie Lanier.

No other human remains have been located said Daugherty, but enough evidence was found that pointed law enforcement to Russell Lanier as the killer.

"I would like to thank all the volunteers that helped for several months in the search of Susie. These volunteers were both local citizens and individuals from different parts of the state and out of state. I would also like to thank those business that provided water and food to the volunteers during these searches," said the sheriff. "We would also like to extend our deep appreciation to Susie's family and also our prayers and condolences. The family was a great part of this investigation and a tremendous help. This is a difficult thing for any family to deal with and we ask the public to respect the family, as they go through this emotional process."

The case will be presented to the next available Grand Jury.