KY - Jan Niesel, 33, Ashland, 12 Aug 1974

Discussion in 'Cold Cases' started by Nina Michigan, Aug 6, 2018.

  1. Nina Michigan

    Nina Michigan Reader, writer, connector of dots

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    Jan (Haban) Niesel was a 33 year old mother of four children, her husband, William, owned (or perhaps ran) the local Volkswagen dealership.

    Jan and her son, John (12?) were finished shopping at Wollco when they were approached by a "man in white" in the parking lot. He made Jan drive to a wooded area then had the two exit the car and walk into the woods where the assailant kicked John in the head, then grabbed Jan around the waist and cut her throat.

    John was able to get away and request help from workman in the area. The killer took Jan's purse, which contained $60-80 in cash.

    The murder weapon, a boning knife, was not recovered, but the receipt and packaging of the item were found at the scene.

    A man was arrested and tried for her murder, he was a painter living in the area who relocated to Washington State in the days after the murder. He was located and brought back, but acquitted.

    Topix on the crime
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  2. kirkassoc

    kirkassoc Well-Known Member

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    I lived in Ashland, KY at the time when this happened. It was horrendous at the time, but it (like everything else over time) just died down and went away. It has been said that the real killer was acquitted. So this case has been closed, from what I understand. I edited this because all I ever heard was rumors. I have since rethought what I believed at the time. I didn't know the Niesels. Such a sad case though.

    There was another murder (actually two teenagers) a few years before this who were killed on Skyline Drive in Ashland. I have tried to find out information on that case, but I believe some boys/men were found guilty in that case and were slapped on the wrist and got out soon thereafter. Her name was Brenda and her boyfriend's name was Don. One of their killers had a crush on Brenda, I believe. She was a beautiful girl and was a senior in high school, I think.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2018
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  3. LaffyTaffy

    LaffyTaffy New Member

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    I was very young at the time this murder occurred, but remember hearing enough about it that it really scared me. I know there was always speculation that her husband was involved but it was never proven. Rumor had it that she had the money in her name, but he was having an affair. At the time of the murder, he had a two-year old son, Jared, with Dreema Bird. Jared died in Ohio in 2012 at the age of 40. The obituary lists his parents as Bill and Dreema Niesel.

    A man named Victor Lee Davies was extradicted from the Northwest (Oregon?, Washington?) and tried for the murder but was acquitted. I believe he left town after the trial. The Niesel family left town soon after and moved back to the Cincinnati area. I am curious if anyone remembers attending the trial or has ever reviewed the trial transcripts. With DNA evidence so prevalent today, you would think that someone would re-examine this case.
     
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  4. Queena

    Queena Member

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    I foi this case. I recently moved to Ashland, so I am fascinated by local crime.

    FindACase¬ô | Rice v. Commonwealth of Kentucky
     

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