Nine arrested as search continues for missing Howell County men

Investigators say Ira Lee Briscoe, 25, was reported missing under suspicious circumstances on...
Investigators say Ira Lee Briscoe, 25, was reported missing under suspicious circumstances on December 23.(KY3)
Published: Jul. 24, 2021 at 11:11 AM CDT
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HOWELL COUNTY, Mo. (KY3) - More than seven months have passed since a Howell County man was reported missing, and authorities continue to investigate suspicious circumstances about his disappearance.

Ira Briscoe and his roommate Limon Little were last seen on December 17, 2020, according to the Howell County Sheriff’s Office.

In an update Saturday, the sheriff’s office notes that authorities have made nine arrests in connection to the missing persons case, following up on more than 100 reports.

Multiple people associated to the case are in prison. The sheriff’s office says arrests and charges were due to unrelated crimes, but they have been used to move the investigation forward.

Investigators say several techniques have been used to try and find Briscoe and Little, including search warrants, investigative subpoenas and more than 100 interviews. Authorities have searched Howell County, Oregon County, Douglas County, West Plains and parts of Arkansas in an effort to find them.

“The gravity of this case has been prioritized above other significant cases and the man hours accumulated during this investigative process is expansive. Lastly, the Howell County Sheriff’s Office will continue to remain vigilant in gaining the necessary closure for all those involved,” says the sheriff’s office.

Briscoe was last seen near his home in rural Howell County, near the Lanton area. His parents reported him missing on Dec. 23, 2020.

One week after the report was made, detectives thought they had a major break in the case. They found Briscoe’s car. It was at a scrap yard. The day before Briscoe went missing, two people exchanged gunfire inside a house in nearby Koshkonong. Investigators say both of them know Briscoe, which gave them reason to possibly think there could be a connection.

If you have any information on the missing persons case, you are asked to call the Howell County Sheriff’s Office at 417-256-2544.

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