Police say they are "99 percent" sure that executed serial killer Ted Bundy abducted and killed 12-year-old Lynette Culver in May 1975.
But a search through hotel registration records that would have confirmed he was in Pocatello at the time has proven fruitless.Detective Lt. Kirk Nelson, who handled the follow-up investigation of the case, said records of the Holiday Inn's current management date from 1983. A check with a former owner-manager now living in El Paso, Texas, revealed the records apparently were left behind and disposed of by the new owners.
In a series of last-minute confessions, Bundy, who was executed in Florida's electric chair Jan. 24, told Idaho investigators he had come to Pocatello May 5, 1975, to find a victim.
Bundy reported he had stayed at a hotel off the freeway, Nelson said. At that time, the only hotel there was the Holiday Inn. Bundy also described the layout of the city in detail.
He told investigators he drove first to Idaho State University and entered a girls' dormitory. His efforts to find a victim there apparently were thwarted by a security person who demanded to know what he was doing in the building.
According to police, Bundy left the building and drove to the Alameda Junior High area where he picked up Culver, later killing her at the hotel.
Bundy said he dumped her body in a river he described as 100 yards wide. Authorities believe that could be the Snake River.
Nelson said police will likely search the river banks following the spring thaw on the outside chance that they might recover a bone fragment or other evidence.
"We'd hate to have some duck hunter come upon something and then have the department accused of not having done a thorough job," the detective said.