Arrest made in 1978 murder of Oroville woman

Feb 19, 2015 6:48 PM by News Staff

Cold Case investigators announced they have arrested 62-year-old Marvin Owens for the murder of his wife in Oroville 36 years ago.

Deborah Owens was originally reported missing by her husband, Marvin Gail Owens, on November 21, 1978. Marvin Owens told authorities he'd last seen her with the couple's children at their home on Crestridge Drive in Oroville.

To this day no friends or family have seen or heard from Deborah Owens and investigators have long suspected that Marvin Owens killed her and disposed of the body.

Former Butte County Sheriff Perry Reniff has been working on Cold Case homicides in Butte County and has spearheaded the investigation into Deborah Owens' disappearance. As a result of the investigation an arrest warrant was issued for Marvin Owens.

Owens, who has been living in Nebraska, was recently arrested by the Keith County Sheriff's Office and is expected to be extradited back to Butte County.

Additionally, investigators believe Marvin Owens may be connected to the suspected death of Essie Margarette Hiett, who was last seen in February of 1978.

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