LINDEN (CBS) – Crews were again using a large backhoe to search a rural well where a convicted killer said he and a friend dumped several bodies during a murder spree known as the Speed Freak Killings.
Authorities have already found more than 1,000 bone fragments in the well where convicted serial killer Wesley Shermantine said there might be 10 or more victims from a 15-year methamphetamine-fueled killing spree he and a childhood friend began in 1984.
Crews have been searching the well since Saturday. For the first time in two days, crews were able to use a large excavator to move large amounts of dirt which investigators will sift through for remains and clues.
The bone fragments discovered so far were found 45 feet deep in the well but officials hoped to reach the bottom of the well Wednesday.
“We’re trying to find information about how deep that well goes but we’re not being too successful,” said San Joaquin Co. Sheriff’s Dept. spokesperson Les Garcia. “I mean it was dug back in the 1800’s so we just don’t know as of yet.”
Shermantine and his childhood friend, Loren Herzog, were called the “Speed Freak Killers” for a methamphetamine-fueled killing spree. It’s unclear exactly how many people they killed, but some estimate it could be more than 20.
Garcia said 65 calls have come into a hotline that was set up for family members who believe their loved ones may have fallen victim to Herzog or Shermantine.
Remains were also found on property in Calaveras County that was once owned by the Shermantine family.
On Tuesday, the mother of one of the Speed Freak Killers known victims was told that her that some of the remains found last week are that of her daughter, Chevy Wheeler.
According to Sacramento-based bounty hunter Leonard Padilla, her remains were found in the location where Shermantine admitted that 16-year old Wheeler was buried.
Wheeler went missing from Franklin High School in Stockton in 1985, when she told friends she was skipping school to go with Shermantine to his family’s cabin in San Andreas.
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