Unsolved Homicides: Remain Under Investigation
A cold case is described as an unsolved criminal investigation that remains open, pending the discovery of new evidence. The Golden Valley Police Department (GVPD) has worked for decades to solve some of its own cold cases, and it doesn't plan on giving up hope.
Loren Busse & Dan Neus
On August 30, 1995, Loren Busse, 28, was killed while riding his bicycle home from work at about 10:30 pm in Golden Valley. His body was found at Mendelssohn Avenue N and Plymouth Avenue Police deemed it a drive-by shooting. Five months later, on the 3300 block of Major Avenue N, Dan Neus, 29, was shot to death while walking his dog at about 11:15 pm, two blocks from his home.
Ballistic tests determined that the same gun, a 40-caliber semiautomatic, was used in both shootings. More than 20 years later, the cases remain unsolved and besides the fact that the same gun was used on two Golden Valley men of a similar age, there has been nothing else found to link the murders, according to police reports. To this day, both shootings appear totally random, and as a former police chief pointed out, "the vast majority of murders aren't random."
On September 23, 2000, the body of Keke Jefferson-Moore was discovered in Wirth Lake in Golden Valley by two morning walkers. After a routine autopsy, it was determined she had been murdered. Although unrelated to the murders of Busse and Neus, the GVPD is still investigating.
Over the years, the GVPD has repeatedly reached out to the media, to other communities, and even brought the FBI onboard to investigate all three cases. They interviewed potential leads and talked to all known witnesses and persons of interest over and over again.
Contact Us With Any Information
The GVPD believes someone out there may know something that could help them solve these murders and help bring closure to three families who have been waiting years for answers. By getting the facts onto social media and to as many eyes and ears as possible, police hope someone will come forward with new information.
If you have any information regarding these homicides, contact the GVPD tip line at 763-512-2500.
- Keke Jefferson-Moore (1980 to 2000)
- Loren Neal Busse (1967 to 1995)
- Daniel Duane Neus (1966 to 1996)
Keke Jefferson-Moore was born in September 1980 to Johnetta Jefferson-Moore and Benjamin Moore. She had two older siblings, a brother, and a sister.
Growing up in Brooklyn Park, Keke was just like any other kid, said her parents. She loves animals, riding her bike, playing with remote control cars, dancing with her father at family reunions, and spending time and doing makeovers with her friend Melody.
"She was a happy, fun, and loving person," says Moore. "She loved joking around."
Keke attended Osseo High School and graduated in 1998 from WAVE alternative high school in Osseo. Her parents agreed she was a people person who got along well with everyone and was always friendly when she met new people.
"High school was where Keke discovered a passion for photography and writing," recalls Jefferson-Moore. Although she took a job as a telemarketer after graduation, she planned to go to college to study journalism.
"She was a giving person," adds Jefferson-Moore. "She stood up for the right thing."
Keke had especially looked forward to being an aunt, her parents said. Her niece, Kalilah, was born in early 2000, and she loved spending as much time as possible with her.
Keke's time with her niece and the rest of her family was cut short at age 20 when she was murdered in Golden Valley.
Her parents want closure. Her father says "even after 18 years, it scares me to think the murderer is still out on the street somewhere," and her mother says "there is a hole in my heart that will never heal."
"Before we die, we want justice. She was our daughter, and then she was gone."
In a letter recalling her younger brother Loren, LouAnn Gallion remembered when she, Loren, and some neighborhood kids climbed an old tree partially fallen to the ground, stumbled across a beehive, and scrambled away amid a cloud of bees.
"Loren was still pretty young and got left behind," Gallion writes. "Since I was 'big sister,' I had to go get him. Even if it meant more stings."
On August 30, 1995, Gallion found herself again going back to Loren, speeding across four states with her fiancé to get to Golden Valley. But this time she couldn't save her little brother. The only thing she could do was reflect on a life cut short.
"Whoever killed our son took him from us but will never take away the beautiful memories we have of him," write Loren's parents of their only son and the baby of the family.
The Busse family's memories and stories of Loren stand as reminders: a person's life is not just a summation of major achievements, but a tapestry of little things, a collection of seemingly small moments that never find their way into the history books.
"I remember summer bike rides," Gallion writes. "Riding snowmobiles, fishing, and playing with Matchbox cars in the dirt. …Loren playing dress-up or Barbie dolls with us…pets, slumber parties in tents and sheds. …Loren holding his first son, Derek… so full of love and amazement."
Loren had three children when he died. The youngest was two. His niece, Alicia Panchyshyn, was four.
"I try my hardest to hold onto the few memories I have left," Panchyshyn writes, recalling the last time she saw him.
"I got to help feed his iguanas for the first time. I was so excited that when my uncle warned me it might bite me on accident, I didn't listen. It ended up biting my hand, scaring me, and making me scream. Everything went flying. The food, the iguana, and me. That all happened two weeks before he died. That was the last time I hugged him, told him I loved him, heard his voice, saw him, and laughed with him."
Gallion writes of loss. "I miss hearing his voice through the telephone. I miss swapping stories with him about his life and his kids. I miss getting to know him as an adult. I miss praying for his success and health. I miss seeing him and his family on our trips to Minnesota. I miss him."
The phases of life flow one into the other with their own kind of momentum, a forward propulsion so full of potential it feels sometimes like it can never be stopped.
And so when it is, the life is celebrated for what it was, but dearly mourned for the future that it promised.
Dan Neus was born in Albert Lea, Minnesota, in August 1966, write Ron and Jane Nues in a biography about their son. One year later he was joined by an adopted sister, Nancy. They grew up like twins. When Dan was 10, his brother Patrick was born. Margaret was born the next year.
Dan began playing basketball in grade school, and in eighth grade, his team took the city championship. In high school, he received an award from 3M for being an innovative thinker. He moved on to study engineering at the University of Minnesota, paying his tuition by working at the Minnesota Daily.
Using his knowledge of computers, Dan helped transition his family's engraving business, Merit Badge, into the digital age. The company made a complete conversion to computerized engraving and increased output more than threefold.
Less than a year after graduating with a degree in business, Dan's first jobs in computer applications allowed him to buy his own house in Golden Valley.
Dan was interested in everything, write the Nueses. Skydiving. Motorcycling. Sports. Computers. Entrepreneurship. And possibilities continued to present themselves.
For years Merit Badge had bought printing from Jiffy Print. When the owner retired, Dan saw an opportunity and put his programming skills to use. As he mastered the printing trade, his parents write, he found much joy in running Jiffy Print on Central Avenue
His next idea was to start his own software company. He drew up a plan and applied for a certificate of incorporation, ready to embark on the next phase of his life. That phase, however, would not come to pass.
The certificate of incorporation, dated February 7, 1996, arrived in the mail just days after Dan was murdered in Golden Valley by an unnamed shooter.
"The world lost a great man," write Dan's parents. "Nancy, Patrick, and Marge lost a great brother, and we sure lost a great son. He had so much to live for."