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Mother-in-law charged with murder in death of Tama woman

(Radio Iowa) – The mother-in-law of a woman found dead in her home in Tama Wednesday has been charged with the woman’s murder.

Iowa DCI Special Agent In Charge Bill Keitzman says the body of 32-year-old Kerry O’Clair-Jefferson was found while Tama police were at the residence on an unrelated issue. “During the course of the early parts of the investigation information was received from citizens and witnesses in town that a Ginger Jefferson — who is the mother-in-law of Kerry Jefferson our victim — may have some involvement with this incident,” Keitzman says. Ginger Jefferson, who is 57-years-old, was taken in as material witness and interviewed.

An autopsy by the State Medical Examiner determined that Kerry Jefferson died from stab wounds to the neck. “Last night based on things that we learned and as a result of the autopsy, a meeting was held with Tama County Attorney Brent Heron, and it was decided at that time that there was probable cause to get an arrest warrant,” according to Keitzman. “An arrest warrant was obtained last night for Ginger Jefferson. It was executed this morning at about 10 a.m. and she has now been charged with murder in the first-degree for the death of Kerry Jefferson, her daughter-in-law.”

Keitzman was asked about a possible motive for the murder, but said he can’t yet reveal that information. “The investigation is ongoing and there’s a lot that we can’t talk about at this point as far as what we are still doing and what’s happened, the ins and outs of the investigation,” Keitzman explains. “We are still working on this, a lot has been done, but we are still taking any and all help from the community and we will continue to follow leads and work on this case.”

Keitzman says both Kerry and Ginger Jefferson were homemakers.