’48 Hours’ on CBS brings us a missing person case that continues to baffle law enforcement officials 25 years after it occurred. Jodi Huisentruit was a news anchor for KIMT in Mason City, Iowa. She disappeared in the early hours of June 27, 1995. Initially, she’d spoken to her colleague saying she’d overslept and was running late. However, she never showed and couldn’t be reached. Eventually, the cops were called to do a welfare check, and their discoveries pointed at an abduction.
For a long time, the cops had no official suspects, though they did treat Jodi’s friend John Vansice as a person of interest. Eventually, they also linked Tony Jackson to Jodi’s disappearance, although he wasn’t involved in her life directly. So, who is Tony Jackson, and where is he now?
Who is Tony Jackson?
Tony Dejuan Jackson lived in Mason City around two blocks away from the KIMT studio. He studied at the North Iowa Community College, where he developed an interest in broadcasting and hosting his student talk show. Apart from such pursuits, Tony also shockingly raped four women in the Minneapolis area, in 18 days. Due to his violent tendencies towards women, WCCO-TV reporter Caroline Lowe and retired Woodbury Police Commander Jay Alberio urged law enforcement officials to look closely at Tony’s involvement.
At the time, Jackson had denied any claims of knowing Jodi. However, a friend came forward but wanted to remain anonymous when speaking of Tony’s relationship with Jodi. The individual said that Jackson asked him to join for happy hour drinks at a bar where Jodi was a regular. Moreover, when they went, and he spotted her, Tony chatted with Jodi. Since they were out of earshot, the friend is unsure which way their conversation went. Tony might have just been asking for career advice. However, his claim of not knowing Jodi seems to fall on its face.
So, did Tony kill Jodi? Firstly the reporter-detective duo who urged the cops to look at Tony, carefully, has expressed doubts about any definite link. Moreover, the investigation has not yielded any proof of connections between the two. Steve Ridge, the cold case investigator on the case, questioned Tony while he was at the Minnesota State Penitentiary.
He asked him outright if Ridge was staring into the eyes of a killer. Tony answered in the negative and also expressed hope that Jodi’s family get answers soon. The inmate went on to say he prayed for Jodi and her family. Thus, it appears that Tony might not have had anything to do with Jodi’s murder, after all.
Where is Tony Jackson Today?
Tony is currently serving a life sentence in prison. He was incarcerated on June 4, 1998, which means he was active around the time Jodi disappeared. Jackson is now at Minnesota Correctional Facility-Stillwater, a close custody state prison for men. It is at Bayport.
Jackson, who is currently 46, is not eligible for parole as he is serving a life sentence. You can check out his prison record here. Tony has continuously maintained his innocence when it comes to Jodi’s disappearance. Although he’s been a person of interest, the cops have not found anything concrete to tie him to the case. Nonetheless, one is glad that a dangerous serial rapist is off the streets and facing the consequences of his actions in prison. [Cover Image Courtesy: Minnesota Dept. of Corrections]
Read More: Where is John Vansice Today?