HARDIN COUNTY, Iowa – Court documents are revealing more details about the murder of a Union man but aren’t shedding any light on a motive for the crime.
The Hardin County Sheriff’s Office says 74-year-old Steve Reece was discovered deceased in a bedroom in his Union home early Tuesday morning. The criminal complaint in the case said Elizabeth Briseno made the call shortly after 5:30 a.m. and told dispatchers that a man was “bleeding from the head and he was not conscious or breathing.”
The complaint said when a deputy arrived at the scene, he saw Reece had severe head trauma. The EMS crew that arrived prior to that had already determined Reece was dead.
The deputy said he noticed a crowbar in the hallway outside of the bedroom.
The investigation determined that 22-year-old Osborn Gavel, of Arkansas, was at the home when Reece was injured. The complaint said during an interview with investigators, Gavel admitted he armed himself with a crowbar he found in the garage. Gavel said he concealed it in his pants and went into Reece’s bedroom, where he hit him in the head with the crowbar four times.
Gavel is now charged with one count of first-degree murder and is being held in the Hardin County Jail.
Investigators say Gavel and others had been staying with Reece the night of October 11th but have not released any information on a possible motive in the murder.