Pair charged with murder opt to make written pleas

Two people accused of killing a Fort Dodge man will make written pleas in the case instead of making an appearance in front of a judge.

Ronald J. Dilley, 29, and Holly N. Ekstrom, 22, were expected to issue their written arraignments and pleas Friday, according to Webster County Attorney Cori Kuhn Coleman. However, online court records did not indicate those documents had been filed as of Friday afternoon.

Their arraignment had been scheduled for Monday, but because the information had been filed by their attorneys, that hearing will not happen.

The couple has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of Steven Fisher, 22, of Fort Dodge.

Fisher’s decomposed remains were found by an Otho farmer in a ditch on July 10. They were sent to the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation’s crime lab for identification. The remains were identified as Fisher’s two days later.

The same day Fisher was identified, investigators announced that Dilley and Ekstrom had been arrested and charged in the case.

They are being held in the Webster County Jail on $500,000 each.

Fisher had last been reported being seen by friends during the later part of the first week of July. He was a 2009 Fort Dodge Senior High graduate who worked at Liguria Foods in Humboldt at the time of his death.