MCCLOUD, Calif. - Deputies in Siskiyou County made an arrest in a cold case murder investigation. Early Thursday morning, the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office arrested Ed Henline Sr., 67, of McCloud for the murder of Hannah Zaccaglini.
Hannah was 15 years-old when she disappeared from the McCloud area in 1997. Henline is being held in the Siskiyou County Jail without bail.
On June 5, 1997 Hannah went missing shortly after being last seen walking in vicinity of the Henline home with Mr. Henline. For several months, Sheriff's Office Detectives from the Major Crimes Unit have been vigorously pursuing new and previous investigative leads, which led to the arrest of Mr. Henline.
Some leads were generated by new witnesses but SCSO Detectives believe there are other citizens with knowledge about Hannah's disappearance and the circumstances leading to her death.
Citizens with information about Hannah's case are urged to contact Detective Jeff Moser of the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office at 530-842-8764. Calls may also be made to the SCSO 24-hour Dispatch Center at 530-841-2900.
Sheriff Jon Lopey said "I am proud of the exemplary investigative efforts of the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office Major Crimes Unit, which tenaciously and relentlessly pursued investigative leads in this case which ultimately led to the arrest of the suspect, Mr. Henline."
"This has been a long, arduous and emotionally tumultuous journey for the investigators and this tragic case has been extremely difficult for the loving family and friends of Hannah Zaccaglini. Family members and friends have had to live with the grief, uncertainty, and irrevocable loss associated with her disappearance for over 15 long years."
"The Department has been working very closely with the Siskiyou County District Attorney's Office to ensure charges are filed against Mr. Henline and any involved co-conspirators. This investigation also involved the assistance and support from many state and local agencies, which assisted the Sheriff's Office with various phases of the investigation.
This arrest resulted from good old-fashioned police work, the dauntless efforts of our investigators, the collective efforts of many law enforcement agencies and the support of witnesses willing to provide information about the case. The arrest of Mr. Henline reinforces one important point and that is that the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office will vigorously and relentlessly pursue criminals whom prey on children and adults in our county. "
"This case, although still on-going, also serves as a small measure of closure to the family and friends of Ms. Hannah Zaccaglini and I am grateful for the hard work and determination of those law enforcement professionals participating in this major investigative effort. On behalf of the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office, I would also like to take this opportunity to extend our thoughts, prayers and sincere condolences to Hannah's family and friends."
The Sheriff's Office is also conducting a parallel investigation involving the disappearance of another McCloud resident, Ms. Karen Knechtel Mero, who was 27 years-old at the time of her disappearance, also during 1997, and also from the McCloud area. Again, anyone with information about either of these two cases is urged to contact Detective Jeff Moser at (530) 842-8764.
The Zaccaglini family issued a written statement:
"The family of Hannah Zaccaglini is very pleased with the recent arrest of Ed Henline, Sr. We would ask that all press please give the family some time to absorb everything. We would like to thank the Siskiyou Sheriff's Department, including Detective Moser and Sheriff Lopey. As well as District Attorney Andrus.
We would also like to state that we are thinking of Karen Mero and her family at this time. She is always not far from our thoughts and we pray that her family will start to find some answers as well.
Again, please give the family some time to deal with these recent events. Thank you."
~The Zaccaglini Family.