HOUSTON – The search continues for a Liberty County woman who’s been missing for a week.
On Tuesday, Texas Search and Rescue cadaver dogs and two Game Wardens scoured a small lake in Liberty County, north of Cleveland. The small flat-bottom boats appeared to be equipped with side-scan sonar.
Missing person’s report leads to possible murder investigation
A deputy was dispatched to a home around 11:30 a.m., on Monday after the family of Sheryl Ann Siddall, 57, reported that they have not been able to contact or locate her since Sept. 12.
“Great lady, we would come out here and go fishing, loves her grandkids all the kids in the family are her pride and joy,” said Niece Amanda Turner.
When the deputy arrived at Siddall’s home, he was greeted by Donald Lee Hassler, 52, who then gave permission for the deputy to search the home. As the deputy entered the kitchen, he found what is believed to be a blood stain on the plywood floor, according to the sheriff’s office. Suspecting that foul play may be involved, the deputy immediately backed out of the room and called for investigators.
When questioned, Hassler told investigators he was purchasing the home from Siddall and claimed that she told him she was leaving to visit her sister in Oklahoma. However, investigators said all of Siddall’s possessions, including her car and purse, were found inside the home. Her phone last pinged from a cellphone tower near her home.
“Her phone last pinged last week to a tower about a mile and half from here. We don’t have the phone,” said Captain David Meyers, with the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office.
Behind Siddall’s home, investigators said they found evidence suggesting that something was dragged into Horseshoe Lake, which borders Siddall’s backyard.
Meyers also detailed that the suspect had a trailer parked at the home with at least 10 guns inside. Hassler, who is on parole, was arrested on a charge of felon in possession of firearms.
Hassler was booked into the Liberty County Jail Monday evening. He has not been charged with other crimes, but more charges may be pending.
Siddall’s family said they knew nothing of Hassler or their relationship.
“We know nothing about him. Nothing at all,” said Siddall’s niece, Amanda Turner.
“They met at a club about two years ago,” said Captain David Meyers, with the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office.