Bowie County Sheriff Department: Arrest made in Cold Case

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Cold Case

Bowie County, ARKANSAS – Bowie County Sheriff Department said they have made an arrest in a Cold Case from 1988.

On October 23, 1988, Gene Downs was found murdered in his home. He had been shot multiple times and his vehicle had been stolen. Investigators submitted evidence to the FBI and several other agencies but the suspect was unknown and the case grew cold.

In late 2018, the FBI updated their Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) and was able to identify a potential suspect in this case. On April 9, 2019, Sheriff James Prince, Investigator Chad Ford, and Captain Robby McCarver traveled to Rocklin, CA and interviewed Lee Morris Hamburg about his involvement in this crime.

Lee Morris Hamburg

The interview resulted in an arrest warrant being issued for Lee Morris Hamburg for the offense of Murder. The Rocklin, CA Police Department assisted in the arrest of Lee Morris Hamburg and he was booked into the Placer County, CA Sheriff’s Office Jail.

Hamburg refused extradition until his appearance at a California hearing on April 24, 2019. On April 30, 2019, Bowie County Sheriff’s Investigators traveled to Placer County, CA and transported Hamburg back to Bowie County where he was booked into the Bi-State Jail.

Hamburg confessed to killing Gene Downs. Justice of the Peace Todd Fore set his bond at $500,000.


Bowie County Sheriff’s Department

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