FLOYD COUNTY – Five-year-old Evelyn Miller vanished from her Floyd County home on July 1, 2005. Days later, a kayaker found her body near the Cedar River. Prosecutors still have not charged anyone for her murder.
Richard and Linda Christie's lives changed forever when someone killed their beloved granddaughter Evelyn Miller back in 2005. "I feel numb. Four years later, I still feel numb,” Linda Christie said.
Four years of waiting for prosecutors to charge someone for the murder has taken an emotional toll on the family. "I used to be a lot happier than I am now. But, I'm still happy. It's just kind of muted,” Richard Christie said.
Linda Christie said, "I used to be more energetic. I used to enjoy life a little bit more. I feel like there's something missing. Part of my soul is missing."
The Christies believe authorities know who killed their granddaughter. The couple suspects Evelyn's mother's former fiance Casey Frederiksen may have something to do with Evelyn's death.
Richard Christie said, "No matter who perpetrated the actual crime, I think your job as a parent is to keep your children safe and you can't keep your children safe. You don't have a right to have children in your home."
Linda Christie said, "If he is the one responsible for the death of my granddaughter, I will have my speech all ready at the sentencing."
No matter who is responsible, the Christies believe their granddaughter's murder will not go unpunished.
"There will be a judgement day...someday. Whether it occurs here or not, there's going to be a judgement day,” Richard Christie said.
Linda Christie said, "Somebody knows something. Somebody knows something."
In the meantime, memories of simple moments provide some comfort.
"Just having her sit on your lap, give you a hug. I have pictures of a lot of different hugs. You miss that,” Richard Christie said. Linda Christie said she misses "Having her say, 'Look here, grandma.' Or, 'Let's cuddle, grandma.'"
Richard Christie tries to focus on his happier times. "We had a good time together. I told her my car was a race car and she was smart enough to figure out that it wasn't. She said, 'Race cars have big numbers on the sides of them.' So, she was a smart little cookie," he said.
Until prosecutors formally charge someone, the Christies have no choice but to wait.
"Hopefully, I won't have to wait another year. But, this case will be solved,” Linda Christie said. Richard Christie believes "There's always justice. Justice always wins."
Authorities say Evelyn Miller's mother, Noel, has moved out of the state. Her father, Andy Christie, still lives in Iowa.
In February 2007, prosecutors charged Danny Slick in for lying to federal agents about the murder investigation. Slick was a friend of Frederiksen and one of the last people to see Evelyn alive.
Noel's former fiancé Casey Frederiksen was arrested several years ago for child pornography. Last month, the U.S. Attorney's office also charged him for making methamphetamine from 2004 up until the time Evelyn vanished.
Authorities would not say if the meth charge has any connection to the murder investigation. They also would not discuss what kind of evidence they still need to charge someone for the murder of Evelyn Miller.
E-mail Mark Geary at Mark.Geary@kcrg.com or follow him on Twitter.