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House on Deerfoot Way still standing over a month after fire in murder case


A charred home in Columbia is still standing more than a month after a Columbia man was found dead inside.

Steven Strumpf, 31, is being held in the Boone County Jail after he was charged with first-degree murder, armed criminal action, second-degree arson and credit card fraud in the Jan. 19 death of David Strumpf on Deerfoot Way in southwest Columbia.

Steven Strumpf's next court date is set for April 22.

Meanwhile, the house where these events took place is the first thing people see when they drive into the Spring Creek neighborhood off of Vawter School Road.

Multiple neighbors said they hope the property is able to be cleaned up sooner rather than later. The neighborhood's HOA President Nate Simmons said he was friends with David Strumpf and finds it difficult to see the house in its current condition.

"Personally, it's a horrible reminder daily of what happened," Simmons said. "David was a friend and a neighbor, and the situation is obviously tragic. It's a very challenging daily reminder of that scenario."

Neighbors said people often drive by to gawk at the dilapidated structure. Neighbor Doug Steinley said he hopes the property can be torn down and build something new in its place.

"It'd be nice to be able to rebuilt," Steinley said. "It's right at the front of the neighborhood, it's kind of an eyesore and a reminder."

Court documents show the fate of the property is being decided through probate court. David Strumpf did not have a will and the court originally named Adam Strumpf of Olathe, Kansas, as the heir to the property, but he renounced those rights.

Susan Burkhart of Clarksburg, Missouri is now the personal representative of the estate and is being represented by James Morris of Jones, Powell and Stevens. Morris was not available for comment Monday.

Court documents state creditors have six months from Feb. 8 to file a claim.

City of Columbia Neighborhood Services manager Leigh Kottwitz said in an email she thinks it's unlikely that the City would demolish the property, but there are procedures in place if that becomes necessary.

She said the department is hoping to get voluntary compliance after the investigation is complete and the property is insured.

Article Topic Follows: Columbia

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Morgan Buresh

Morgan is an evening anchor and reporter who came to ABC 17 News in April 2023.


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