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June 18, 2024

Attorney General Bird Launches Cold Case Unit to Seek Justice for Victims and Families

DES MOINES—Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird today announced the launch of her office’s new cold case unit to investigate Iowa’s more than 400 unsolved murders. The announcement was made in a press conference at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office in Des Moines. Speakers at the press conference also included:

  • Steve Ponsetto, Investigator and lead of the Iowa cold case unit in the Iowa Attorney General’s Office
  • Sheriff Kevin Schneider, Polk County Sheriff
  • Jody Ewing, founder of
  • Josh Okland, brother of cold case victim Ashley Okland

“I became a prosecutor to fight for victims and families,” said Attorney General Bird. “That is why on day one in office, I made it a priority to build our office’s first cold case unit. I am glad to announce that we have today launched our new unit that will bring fresh eyes to Iowa’s cold cases and dedicate a team to detecting new leads. And I thank the legislature for granting us the budget to make it happen. My promise to families of Iowa cold case victims is this: we will never give up, we will never stop searching, and we will never lose hope. If even one case is solved, it is all worth it. No one should get away with murder.”

The cold case unit will consist of three full-time investigators and one prosecutor. The unit will partner with local law enforcement agencies across Iowa to crack cold cases, seek answers for families, and ensure no murderer walks free.

To submit a cold case tip, contact the Iowa Attorney General’s office at 1-800-242-5100 or


For More Information:

Alyssa Brouillet | Communications Director


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