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Private investigator searching campground for evidence in DeOrr Kunz case


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LEADORE — A private investigator spent today searching the Timber Creek Campground for signs of missing toddler DeOrr Kunz, Jr.

Philip Klein of Klein Investigations in Texas says he and his team have been conducting searches at the campground since early Sunday morning.

“We have obtained a cadaver dog from Georgia and we are currently doing a ground search on a specific area of the campground,” Klein tells


A cadaver dog is being used in the search for DeOrr Kunz, Jr. | Photo courtesy Philip Klein.

Klein was previously employed as a private investigator by father Vernal DeOrr Kunz, but was fired by the family in March after claiming mother Jessica Mitchell knew where DeOrr’s body was.

The private investigator has since been retained by an unknown benefactor to continue his investigation into the case.

On Wednesday, Klein told his team has uncovered more evidence in the case for the missing boy and law enforcement has been notified. He declined to elaborate on the evidence.

Lemhi County Sheriff Chief Deputy Steve Penner confirms to that his department has been cooperating with Klein’s search.


Private investigators Philip Klein and Tracy Sargent | Photo courtesy Philip Klein.

“There are things his guys have found and we’ve come up to take a closer look at it,” Penner said, adding that there have no major developments or finds in the case.

DeOrr disappeared while on a camping trip in Leadore with his parents, great-grandfather, and a family friend nearly a year ago.

There has been no sign of the now 3-year-old since July 10 and local and federal investigators believe the child was either accidentally or intentionally killed.

Nobody has been charged in the case, but Lemhi County Sheriff Lynn Bowerman said the boy’s parents, Vernal DeOrr Kunz and Jessica Mitchell, are considered suspects.