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4 arrested for allegedly kidnapping, killing 2 women who went missing in Oklahoma

Emily Hudson By Emily Hudson May9,2024

TEXAS COUNTY, Okla. (TCD) — Four people have been arrested on multiple charges, including murder, for allegedly playing a role in the suspected kidnapping and killing of two women who went missing last month.

Veronica Butler, 27, and Jilian Kelley, 39, were reported missing March 30. They had been traveling together to pick up children, but they never made it to their destination. Texas County Sheriff’s Department deputies were called to a rural area on Highway 95 near Elkhart, Kansas, where they found an abandoned vehicle. The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) took over the case and determined the women disappeared under “suspicious” circumstances. They later said they had evidence to suspect foul play was involved.

On Saturday, April 13, the OSBI announced they arrested 54-year-old Tifany Adams, her boyfriend, 43-year-old Tad Cullum, 50-year-old Cole Twombly, and 44-year-old Cora Twombly. All four are being charged with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of kidnapping, and one count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

The next day, investigators from the FBI, Texas County Sheriff’s Department, and Oklahoma Chief Medical Examiner’s Office located two deceased people in Texas County. The OSBI said the medical examiner would conduct autopsies to determine cause and manner of death. Kelley and Butler were not publicly identified as the victims in the OSBI’s statement, but several law enforcement leaders referred to the women by name in a press conference on Monday, April 15.

According to the probable cause affidavit shared by KOKH-TV, Butler and Adams’ son have two children together, but Butler and Adams were engaged in a “problematic custody battle.” Butler had supervised visitation with her kids every Sunday, and that day, Butler brought Kelley with her as her supervisor because Adams said the person she wanted was not available.

Butler told her family she planned to meet with Adams at 10 a.m. at an intersection in Texas County, then bring her daughter to a birthday party. Butler never arrived, so her family started searching. They discovered her vehicle and called the sheriff’s department. The affidavit says deputies “found evidence of a severe injury,” including blood on the road, a broken hammer, a pistol magazine, and Kelley’s glasses.

Adams was reportedly the last person to have any contact with Butler. Prior to the incident, Adams also allegedly told her preferred visitation supervisor to “take a couple of weeks off.”

Adams’ son and Butler had reportedly been engaged in a custody dispute since 2019, and they were due to appear in court April 17 for another hearing. Butler’s attorney reportedly told the OSBI that the April 17 hearing would likely have granted Butler unsupervised visitation. Adams, however, allegedly did not allow her son to take care of the children even though he had custody of them.

In February, Adams’ son allegedly told his grandmother he “didn’t have to worry about the custody battle much longer because Adams had it under control, that Adams knew the path the judge walked to work, and ‘we will take out Veronica at drop off.'” Adams’ son was reportedly at a rehab facility when the two women went missing.

Investigators obtained a warrant to search Adams’ phone and found internet queries for topics such as Taser pain level, gunshots, and “how to get someone out of their house.”

Cora Twombly allegedly told her teen daughter that the four suspects and another man  killed Kelley and Butler and that Adams bought burner phones to communicate. The teen said the suspects were part of an anti-government organization with a religious affiliation called God’s Misfits and met weekly.

On March 29, Cora and Cole Twombly allegedly told her daughter they would not be there the next morning because they “were going to be on a ‘mission.'” When they returned home, Cora Twombly reportedly said “things did not go as planned, but that they did not have to worry about [Butler] again.”

According to the affidavit, Cora and Cole Twombly “blocked the road to stop Butler and Kelley and divert them” to where the other suspects were hiding.

The daughter asked why they killed Kelley, and Cora Twombly said because she “supported Butler.” She also inquired if they left the bodies in a well, and Cora Twombly allegedly said, “Something like that.”

The suspects reportedly tried to kill Butler in February and planned to “throw an anvil through Butler’s windshield while driving, making it look like an accident because anvils regularly fall off work vehicles.”

Following Butler and Kelley’s disappearances, investigators reportedly went to a property where the suspects had been and found a freshly dug hole that had been refilled and covered with hay.

OSBI public information officer Hunter McKee said at the press conference Monday, “You have two people who are dead and four people who committed an absolutely brutal crime.”

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Emily Hudson

By Emily Hudson

Emily is a talented author who has published several bestselling novels in the mystery genre. With a knack for creating gripping plotlines and intriguing characters, Emily's works have captivated readers worldwide.

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One thought on “4 arrested for allegedly kidnapping, killing 2 women who went missing in Oklahoma”
  1. Were there any details revealed about the motive behind the alleged kidnapping and killing of the two women?

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