Man searching for deer antlers finds remains of missing MMA fighter, Missouri cops say

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A man was searching for deer antlers in a wooded area in Missouri when he came across human remains.

The remains, found on Dec. 22, were sent to a forensic odontologist who confirmed it was David Koenig, according to a Monday Dec. 27 press release from the Branson Police Department.

Koenig, of Branson, was an amateur mixed martial arts fighter, according to local media sites, including the Springfield News-Leader. The family say he was last seen in February 2020 and reportedly stayed at a motel in Branson.

The investigation into his disappearance began in March 2020, police said, and multiple searches were carried out by several agencies in the region.

“Our service and the amazing group of volunteers have never stopped going out of their way to locate Mr. Koenig,” said Branson Police Chief Jeff Matthews. “While this is not the end we hoped for, we offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Koenig.”

Police said a medical examiner determined Koenig’s death did not appear to be a criminal act and no evidence of trauma had been found. His cause of death has not been disclosed.

After his remains were found near the 3700 block of Fall Creek Rd., Police said a “careful search of the area” had been carried out. Most of his remains and several “personal items” were recovered.

On a Facebook page named “David Koenig Search Party,” a post asked for family confidentiality.

“We are suffering,” the message read. “We need time and we need some peace right now. Please and thank you for your prayers.

Branson is located in the Ozarks of Missouri, near the southwestern border of the state.

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