Tipton, MI

Dee Ann Warner's Husband Watches Police Search for His Wife

Tracy Stengel

Detective Singleton and Dale Warner.Photo byKathryn Adams

Today marks the third day of an extensive search of farmland owned or leased by Dale Warner as Michigan State Police, armed with search warrants, hunt down the remains of his wife, Dee Ann Warner

Dee was 52-years old when she vanished from her Tecumseh, Michigan farm between the evening of April 24 and the morning of April 25, 2021 after planning to tell her husband she wanted a divorce.

Dale was on-site this morning at one of Dale and Dee’s properties on Paragon Road in Tipton, Michigan. Dale had been clearing the area before and after Dee’s disappearance. He dug a huge pit and burned the remains of a dilapidated house and a Quonset barn and buried them.

Kathryn Adams, a long-time friend of Dee’s, was the first citizen on the scene. “I’ve been out here since about 8 o’clock this morning and saw two police cars here. After I dropped the kids off at school, I drove by again and saw Dale standing there talking to Michigan State Police. He was here about 20 minutes before they asked him to leave. He claims he was here because the Township told him he had to clean all this up.”

The massive hills of dirt are expected to be sifted over the next few days.

An excavator digs up Dale Warner's property as Dale's machinery sits idle.Photo byTracy Stengel

The property is on a dirt road between Dale and Dee’s house and where Dale’s father lives. Billy Little, Jr., a nationally recognized investigative attorney who has been working on the case pro bono since March 2022, has made it known Dee’s Apple watch and phone went dead at 2:30 AM on April 25, 2021. According to Little, a witness puts Dale inside his father’s equipment barn getting keys approximately 3:00 AM that morning and he returned to his home at 4:30.

Dale claimed he didn’t leave his home that night at all after a terrible argument with Dee. Later, he said, it wasn’t that bad. He gave Dee a massage and she fell asleep. He carried her to the couch and went to bed. The next morning, around 6:30 AM, he left for work and Dee was snoring on the couch.

This afternoon, a bystander who knows Dale and Dee very well and asked not to be identified, said, “I’ve known that man for years and he doesn’t get out of bed before 8 AM for anything.”

Kathryn Adams said, “It looked like Dale left his house this morning to get here in quite a hurry because he didn’t even have his pants over his boots.”

Dale’s Case bulldozer and John Deere excavator sat idle as two excavators unearthed up a mish-mash of items including clothing and blankets from the previous homeowner. Many of the things that came out of the hole had not been damaged by fire. Locals said the basement of the house had been flooded.

The mounds of dirt and debris are expected to be sifted in the next few days. Detectives Drewyor and Singleton supervised the search.

Mary Schneider travelled from Toledo, Ohio to the remote digging site. Mary and Dee had been friends since high school, and she wanted to show her concern and support. 

When I asked what she remembered about Dee, her eyes danced, and she laughed — a common occurrence when I ask Dee’s friends and family to describe her. “She was very sweet. We probably did a lot of things we shouldn’t have.” Then, she laughed again.

Today is bittersweet for many of Dee’s friends who were on-scene today. There was a solemn and sad vibe mixed with giggles when they recalled their special memories of the spunky spitfire, who by all accounts, had a heart of gold.

For background information on Dee’s case, you can start here. For all the latest updates, join the Justice for Dee Facebook page. As always, Dee’s family and friends ask and appreciate support and prayers.

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Tracy explores the world with a positive eye, an open heart, and a sprinkling of humor. Without laughter, she would be lost.

Onsted, MI

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