Ad
SimpliSafe Mobile
Ad
Simplisafe Desktop

Update: KKK leader found dead near river

by Ellen Killoran

Frank Ancona’s wife told police he was planning to file for divorce

Updated: February 13, 12:15 a.m.

According to a recent report from Daily Journal Online in Missouri, Frank Ancona’s autopsy has revealed that he died of a gunshot wound to the head. Contrary to our earlier report, his body was found in proximity to Big River in Washington County, not in it. It is unclear where Ancona’s body was in relation to his car, which was reportedly found on Friday in a remote wooded area in Washington County. According to the Daily Journal Online, charges in relation to Ancona’s death could be filed on Monday.

Earlier story: 

A Ku Klux Klan “imperial wizard” was found dead in a Missouri river under suspicious circumstances on Saturday, days after he was last seen in his Leadwood, Missouri, home.

According to the Daily Journal Online, Frank Ancona’s wife told police that he was called in by his employer to do a long-haul delivery of a part, and left Wednesday morning. When he did not make contact with his family they became concerned. His employer, who has not been named, told police they did not send him on the delivery job.

On Friday, Ancona’s car was reportedly found in a remote area in Washington County, Missouri. At that time, Leadwood Police reportedly visited Ancona’s home as they were unable to reach his wife by phone. There, they found a safe that appeared as though it had been smashed into with a crowbar, but police reportedly do not believe it was the result of a burglary.

On Saturday, a woman contacted police to say she had discovered a body in Big River while fishing with her family, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.  The body has reportedly been identified as Frank Ancona, and an autopsy is being conducted on Sunday.

“Right now no one has been charged in his death, but that may change tomorrow,” Washington County Sheriff Zach Jacobsen told the newspaper, adding that a man had been arrested on an unrelated warrant.

According to the Daily Journal Online, Ancona’s wife Malissa posted on Facebook seeking a roommate for her husband the day he was last seen at their home — a post that appears to have since been deleted. Malissa reportedly explained to authorities that she Ancona told her he was filing for divorce when he returned from his work trip, and she thought he would need help with living expenses.

A Facebook profile that appears to belong to Malissa Ancona appears to remain active. In the comment thread on a post about her husband’s disappearance, a woman urges Mrs. Ancona to contact her, and Malissa replied that police had advised her not to speak to anyone until she spoke to them again on Sunday.

According to the Kansas City Star, Ancona was a member of the Traditionalist Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. In previous interviews with the newspaper, Ancona had described his group as Christian organization and a fraternal order, not a hate group.

“How can you be a Christian organization and hate other people?,” Ancona reportedly said.

Ancona also gave an interview to the underground vigilante group Anonymous in 2014.

A Twitter account connected to the name Malissa Ancona identifies as being part of the Traditionalist Knights. The Facebook page connected to the same name, which appears to belong to Ancona’s wife, contains frequent postings related to animal rescue.

 

Photo: YouTube Screenshot

Ellen is a seasoned journalist and former media & entertainment reporter with a taste for true crime. Formerly a senior editor at IBTimes, her work has appeared in Forbes, Rolling Stone, Maxim, NYMag, Indiewire, and more. She co-produced the HBO documentary "Youth Knows No Pain" and appeared in a documentary series that aired alongside the Lifetime movie "Manson's Lost Girls."