Maryland Heights man charged with woman’s 2004 murder, corpse abandonment

Published: Jan. 11, 2023 at 4:12 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 12, 2023 at 6:40 PM CST
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ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KMOV) -- A Maryland Heights man was indicted this week for a 2004 murder where a headless torso was found in Warren County, Missouri.

The St. Louis Prosecuting Attorney’s Office charged Mike Clardy, 63, with second-degree murder and abandonment of a corpse. The indictment against Clardy alleges he killed a woman around June 26, 2004, and disposed of her corpse near McKelvey Hill and Dorsett and on Interstate 70.

The woman’s torso was found in Warren County on June 28, 2004, and a knife was found in a sewer near her body. A probable cause statement alleges the victim’s DNA was found on the knife, and another source of DNA was recovered from the woman’s remains. The woman was identified in 2016 as Deanna Denise Howland.

Then, in 2019, additional DNA investigation led to Clardy being identified as a suspect. The Maryland Heights Police Department alleged in the probable cause statement that Clardy admitted Tuesday to killing Howland at his home around June 26, 2004, dismembering her body, and abandoning parts of her corpse.

At a press conference held by the Major Case Squad in Warrenton Thursday, Howland’s daughter, Ashley Kinnear, expressed her gratitude for the years of hard work by the detectives involved in the case.

“I am just very very thankful,” she said.

According to police, Clardy has admitted to the killing of Howland. Saying that he admitted to killing her in his home on June 26, 2004, and then dismembering her body. Police say he admitted to dumping some of her remains in St. Louis County and her torso at a Wright City rest stop.

Mike Clardy has been charged with second-degree murder and abandonment of a corpse.
Mike Clardy has been charged with second-degree murder and abandonment of a corpse.(Maryland Heights Police Department)

Lt. Scott Schoenfeld is a detective with the Warren County Sheriff’s Office and worked on the case for years.

“At the point we zeroed in on a suspect it was one of the better moments of my career,” he said.

Detectives said Howland was killed in a house where Clardy lived in 2004 in the 3500 block of Dixie Street in St. Ann. William Provance lived next door to Clardy at the time.

“I didn’t think he would kill anybody,” said Provance.

Robert Platt lives several doors down from the home where Clardy lived and in 2004 worked with him. He said neighborhood children, including his daughter, used to play in the street in front of Clardy’s house.

“It scares me even now,” said Platt.

Clardy’s current address listed in the indictment is Charlemagne Drive in Maryland Heights. News 4 went to the home but a man who answered the door said no one wanted to comment.

If convicted on the charges Clardy could face nearly 40 years in prison.