VERMILLION, S.D. | The question of who killed Alicia Hummel more than three weeks ago remained unanswered Wednesday as authorities released new information about how the Sioux City woman died at a remote fishing spot in Clay County.
The final autopsy report says Hummel, 29, died of drowning, with contributing circumstances of blunt force head injuries and an incised wound on her neck, a release from the South Dakota Attorney General’s office said.
Toxicology reports were negative for alcohol or controlled substances, the release said.
Hummel's body was found in the Missouri River the afternoon of June 1. A state boat ramp attendant made the discovery near the shore at a boat dock at Myron Grove, also known as the Highline Area, about seven miles west of Vermillion.
Authorities are investigating her death as a homicide.
Clay County Sheriff Andy Howe said Wednesday that officials still don't have any suspects in the case but are checking Hummel’s phone records, suspicious vehicles and tips from the public. Her cellphone has not been found.
“It was obvious that there was an assault, although the injuries from the assault didn’t cause her death," Howe said. "Although I’m certain that they may have contributed to the drowning."
Howe confirmed that Hummel's husband, Tony, is not a suspect. Tony Hummel did not immediately respond to an email from the Journal seeking comment Wednesday.
“We’re following up on quite a few leads," Howe said. "It’s very time consuming. We’re fairly active at this point."
He said authorities are still asking for help identifying any cars that may have been seen near the park around the time Hummel died. Witnesses had reported seeing a dark-colored sedan with tinted windows and a loud exhaust system in the area.
Hummel had gone fishing June 1, the first day of a vacation from her job at Siouxland Family Center in Dakota City, where she taught Early Head Start classes for infants and toddlers.
Amanda Abraham was a close friend of Hummel and a teammate on the Sioux City Roller Dames roller derby team. She said in an email Wednesday that she wants a suspect in her friend's death apprehended.
“All I can say is that they need to find out who did this and they need to be punished," Abraham said. "I will not discuss (the) case other then praying that justice is found and served to whomever took her life."
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Clay County Sheriff's Office at 605-677-7100.
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