NEW DETAILS: Identity of found body confirmed, family mourns Amber Tjaden
The car belonged to missing woman, Amber Tjaden.
OTOE COUNTY, Neb. (KMTV) — The Otoe County Sheriff’s Office (OSO) has confirmed the deceased person found this weekend was Amber Tjaden.
According to preliminary autopsy reports, Tjaden likely died of cold exposure and foul play is not suspected, shared OSO.
Tjaden, 48, was reported missing from Cass County in late January. Her body was found after citizens reported seeing a vehicle on the side of the road similar to Tjaden’s.
The investigation is still ongoing.
Read the full OSO press release below:
Updated story posted Feb. 6 at 1:48 p.m.
The daughter of former Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle and State Sen. Deb Suttle has been found dead, family members announced on Facebook on Saturday.
Amber Tjaden, 48, had been missing since January 27. On Friday, a car belonging to her was found on a remote road in Otoe County. The Otoe County Sheriff’s Office said a body was found near the vehicle.
While authorities not have not released the body’s identity, Facebook posts from Tjaden’s brother-in-law and daughter confirmed it to be hers.
“It is with a heavy heart that I share that my mom’s car was found and she was found nearby and has passed on,” her daughter Savannah wrote on Facebook.
Tjaden’s brother-in-law, Mike Lewis, wrote on Facebook that the person who spotted the car did so because of social media coverage of the case.
“Through all of your sharing and posting, we were able to assist the investigation and ultimately bring this to a conclusion, and so I deeply truly thank you all for your assistance,” Lewis wrote.
Jim Suttle told 3 News Now earlier Saturday that he believed the body found was going to be Amber’s.
“They have found a car, and they have found a person which we believe is going to turn out to be Amber,” he said.
Savannah Suttle used the Facebook post to remember Tjaden as a “fantastic mother” who was her “best friend.”
“I will love you forever. You lived for your kids, you were a fantastic mother. You did everything for us,” Suttle wrote. “You were my best friend, I talked to you everyday, I told you everything. It will take a long time for me to not reach for the phone at the end of each day to call you and see how you are and tell you about my day. I could rely on you for everything and anything. You gave me advice, wiped my tears, always knew what to say.
I wanted you to be at my wedding some day, I wanted you to hold your grandkids. I did not know that ‘goodbye’ on the phone the night before was going to be a true goodbye.”
Tjaden was an educator at Metro Community College who worked with the Gateway to College program.
“She loved teaching and helping shape the lives of young people, she loved to make a difference,” Savannah Suttle wrote. “She believed in you all, believe in yourselves and carry on her memory and her legacy by staying in school, striving to do your best, and be the wonderful and successful people she knew you could be.”
Savannah Suttle also thanked the agencies who helped with the case, particularly the Cass County Sheriff’s Office, Omaha Police, Nebraska State Patrol and the Otoe County Sheriff’s Office.
Cass County court documents show Amber Tjaden’s husband, 38-year-old Matthew Tjaden, was arrested on January 28, 2021, shortly after sheriff’s deputies went to the couple’s home to check up on Tjaden.
Matthew Tjaden was arrested for flight to avoid arrest, child abuse and resisting arrest, according to the documents. He has since been released from jail and is scheduled to appear again on March 4.
In a Facebook post on Thursday, the Cass County Sheriff’s Office said “Matthew Tjaden and his extended family have been cooperating with law enforcement in facilitating searches and gathering of information.”
Court documents paint a rocky picture of his relationship with Amber Tjaden, including a domestic abuse protection order she filed in July 2015. In one document, Amber wrote: “I am in a state of constant fear for the safety of my children and myself.”
OTOE COUNTY, NE (KLKN) — A car belonging to 48-year old Amber Tjaden, who has been missing since January 27th, was found on a remote road in Otoe County.
According to a news release from the Otoe County Sheriff’s Office, a body was found near the vehicle.
Tjaden is the daughter of former Omaha Mayor Jim Suttle. Saturday morning, 3 News Now spoke with Suttle who said Omaha Police stopped by his house on Friday to personally tell the family Tjaden’s vehicle had been found with a body nearby.
An autopsy will be performed but according to 3 New Now, Suttle believes the body belongs to his daughter.
“They have found a car, and they have found a person which we believe is going to turn out to be Amber.”
Suttle added that the vehicle was found through the help of a social media campaign to locate it, and he appreciates those who called in with tips.
Tjaden’s husband, 38-year-old Matthew Tjaden, was arrested last week for allegedly fleeing from officers and child neglect. He allegedly took his two sons, ages 10 and 11, with him while fleeing the authorities.
He has since been released from jail and is scheduled to appear again on March 4.
Court documents show Amber Tjaden filed a domestic abuse protection order against Matthew Tjaden in Douglas County in July 2015. Documents show that Amber wrote Matthew was “loading his shot gun and on his way to shoot me” on June 26, 2015.
Amber wrote of how Matthew allegedly had become “angry, violent and verbally abusive.” Amber wrote that Matthew “texts and calls me from Iowa 30-40 times a day, threatening me.”
Amber also wrote of an incident in February 2015 where Matthew allegedly punched a wall at their home and also picked her up and threw her onto the couch. Amber wrote she filed a protection order but the next day, she said Matthew drove her down to the courthouse and made her get it dismissed.
Amber also wrote, “I am in a state of constant fear for the safety of my children and myself.”
Suttle has taken his two grandsons into his home and says they are becoming surrogate parents to them as they work through the grieving process.