***Homicide Investigation Update***
On 08/22/2021, at about 10:58 pm, Boone County Joint Communications received a call from a concerned subject reporting they had been unable to contact Allison Abitz and her daughter Jozee Abitz, who both resided in the 7500 block of Lavender Drive south of Columbia.
Boone County deputies responded to the residence on Lavender Court and once inside located Allison, age 43, and her daughter Jozee, age 11, deceased.
Evidence suggested Allison had been strangled and Jozee had been drowned.
Investigators soon identified JT McLean as the long-term boyfriend of Allison and developed probable cause to believe McLean murdered Allison and Jozee. The motive for the murder of these victims is still unknown. Investigators soon discovered a burn pile at McLean’s last known address in Callaway County and within that burn pile they found electronics to include cellular phones and computers. All the vehicles known to belong to McLean were accounted for; however, McLean’s whereabouts were unknown. It was apparent at that point McLean was attempting to evade apprehension and not be tracked.
On 08/25/2021, the Boone County Prosecuting Attorney charged JT McLean (age 45) with two counts of Murder in the 1st Degree. A warrant for the arrest of McLean was then issued in the 13th Judicial Circuit Boone County, Missouri. McLean’s bond for these charges was set at $1,000,000.00 cash only.
Due to the murders of Allison and Jozee, as well as the allegations of prior threats of violence, we believed McLean could be a threat to anyone; however, we knew of no current specific threats or details regarding danger to the public or any specific individuals.
During the investigation of the homicides of Allison and Jozee, investigators received information that McLean had recently acquired a dark colored motorcycle, which was not titled or registered in his name and the make, model and type of motorcycle was unknown. Based on that information, we believed McLean likely fled the area on the motorcycle, so we pushed that information out on social media on 09/08/2021.
On 09/08/2021, at around 7:45 pm, we received information from the Miller County Sheriff’s Office that they were investigating a double homicide at a residence that was possibly related to our investigation. We then learned the two victims in Miller County, were related to one of McLean’s ex-wives, an unregistered motorcycle had been found near the victims’ residence, and a vehicle belonging to the Miller County victims was missing.
Our investigators began collaborating with the Miller County Sheriff’s Office, the Missouri State Highway Patrol and agencies in the Sioux City area to include the Union County Sheriff’s Office, in Elk Point, South Dakota.
With the assistance of OnStar, the vehicle belonging to the Miller County victims was located and disabled in a hotel parking lot in Dakota Dunes, South Dakota, which is an unincorporated community just outside of Sioux City. This was concerning as we learned relatives of the Miller County victims were also somewhere in the greater Sioux City area and could be in danger. Law enforcement personnel contacted the relatives and they were moved to a safe location.
Local South Dakota law enforcement personnel were also able to locate the vehicle in the hotel parking lot. According to the Union County Sheriff’s Office, non-lethal means were used, and officers received no response from McLean. A drone was then deployed over the vehicle and TJ McLean was found deceased inside the vehicle from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
At this time, we will forward questions regarding the homicides in Miller County or the investigation into the death of JT McLean in Union County South Dakota to the Miller County Sheriff’s Office or the Union County Sheriff’s Office.
The investigation into the deaths of Allison and Jozee Abitz is still active and ongoing; however, at this time we believe JT McLean, now deceased, was the person who murdered Allison and Jozee.