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Lykken's Heated Exchange With Attorney General

April 15, 2014, 6:00 PM by Don Jorgensen

Lykken's Heated Exchange With Attorney General

There was relief and anger Tuesday as authorities ended an investigation more than 40 years after two South Dakota teenagers disappeared.

South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley says skeletal remains found in a 1960 Studebaker in a Union County creek are that of Sherri Miller and Pam Jackson.

The man whose brother once was at the center of the cold case investigation confronted South Dakota's Attorney General in a heated exchange of words.

Kerwyn Lykken, who was at Tuesday's news conference, didn't hold anything back when he came face-to-face with South Dakota's Attorney General Marty Jackley as he was leaving the courthouse. 

"You put us through hell, so just remember that," Lykken said.

In 2004, investigators spent four days digging up areas around the Lykken farm and questioning Kerwyn Lykken and his 84-year-old mother Esther, accusing them of knowing something about the two girls' disappearances.

The Lykkens always maintained their innocence.

"Whatever you said in there was meaningless, mouthing, worthless," Lykken said. 

The Lykkens sued state investigators for $400,000, arguing they caused significant property damage during their searches and falsely accused the family of not cooperating.  The lawsuit was dismissed and later upheld by the Federal Courts.

"I know my day in court is done, I know that," Lykken said.

Now that the case is closed, law enforcement hopes healing can begin for everyone, including the Lykkens.

"I hope there's good closure for the Lykkens. It's hard for what they had to go through, I hated to see that for them. But it's hard to apologize for doing our job and that's what we were doing.  We were doing our jobs," Union County Sheriff Dan Limoges said.

Kerwyn Lykken is the brother of David Lykken, who at the time was charged in the 1971 disappearance of the two Vermillion girls.  Charges against David Lykken have since been dropped, though he is in prison for an unrelated case.

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