FBI agents have completed their search of a ranch in the investigation of the disappearance of atheist leader Madalyn Murray O'Hair.
Robert Grant, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI's San Antonio office, wouldn't comment Sunday on whether the search was successful but said: "It was not a waste of time."
FBI agents descended on the south Texas pasture on Friday, using dogs, a backhoe and a helicopter with night-vision equipment. The U.S. attorney's office said the ranchers, who are about 100 miles west of San Antonio, are not targets of the investigation.
The FBI has refused to confirm the subject of the investigation. But officials with the Texas Department of Public Safety have said it was helping federal agents in a search for evidence in the 1995 disappearance of Mrs. O'Hair; her son, Jon Garth Murray; her granddaughter, Robin Murray O'Hair; and $500,000 in gold coins.
Mrs. O'Hair began a legal battle in Baltimore that led to the 1963 U.S. Supreme Court decision outlawing organized prayer in public schools. She founded American Atheists Inc.
Last month, David R. Waters, the former office manager for Mrs. O'Hair, and Gary P. Karr were arrested on weapons charges. Waters has denied involvement in the O'Hairs' disappearance. Neither man has been charged in the disappearance case.
FBI agent Bill O'Leary reportedly testified during Karr's March 26 detention hearing that Karr admitted being an accessory to four homicides in Texas and helping get rid of the victims and their property.
Karr's lawyer, Richard Helfrick, said his client cooperated with FBI questioning about homicides in Texas. Helfrick wouldn't say if Karr admitted a role in any slayings.
Written by Renae Merle