Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sofia Juarez: Search efforts continue

For some reason this article was listed in the "Opinions" section, but it is unsigned. Perhaps an editorial?
Article from
Community won't give up searching for Sofia
Published Tuesday, July 24th, 2007
The nightmare began a little over four years ago.
Little Sofia Juarez of Kennewick went for a walk and never returned. What happened to her is a mystery.
As the agonizing days immediately following her disappearance turned into heartsick months, her family has not given up hope of finding her.
Neither has the Tri-City community.
A renewed effort has begun to locate the girl who would now be 9 years old.
Posters of what she looked like when she disappeared and what she may look like today have been put on the sides of several semi-trucks owned by Gordon Trucking, a family-owned business based in Pacific committed to reuniting missing children with their families.
Under her photos is a phone number people can call if they've seen the girl. The idea
is to have as many people as possible see Sofia's picture in the hope it could spark the one important tip that would lead to finding her.
Kennewick police say her case continues to be investigated as a missing and endangered child, and detectives continue to receive tips about it.
In fact, police say they have gotten about 850 tips since the little girl went missing, some from as far away as Louisiana, Texas, Minnesota, California, New Mexico, Arizona and elsewhere.
Yet the search continues.
The new posters of Sofia displayed on the semi-trucks are part of a two-year-old program called Operation Homeward Bound. It is coordinated by the Washington State Patrol, but wouldn't happen without the help of businesses that include Gordon Trucking, the graphics company IMAGIC of California and Budget Auto Wrecking of Kent, all of which have donated time, services and money.
Losing a child is among a parent's worst fears. Sofia
was 5 years old when she asked permission to join another household member for a trip to the convenience store. She left so shortly after he did, it was assumed she would catch up to him. But when he returned, he said he never saw her.
Within hours, Kennewick police, the Washington State Patrol and officers from around the Tri-Cities began looking for the girl. Divers searched the Columbia River and a helicopter with a thermal-imaging camera from the Washington Army National Guard was brought in to help.
They never found a trace.
Of course, her family will never give up believing they might one day
be reunited with Sofia. It is a sign of a caring community that the Tri-Cities
continues to keep that hope alive.

If you know anything about the disappearance of Sofia Lucerno Juarez, please call the Kennewick Police at (509) 585-4208 or (509) 628-0333, or call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

You can print a poster of Sofia here.
Sofia's website:

Photo and age progression from Sofia's NCMEC poster.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Joey Offutt: Police question neighbors of area where car was found

It looks like Joey is still missing! Hopefully they find her soon--and find out who that little baby was. Fortunately, the story also includes three essential pieces of information: a photo, a description, and law enforcement contact information.

Police Question Neighbors About Missing Woman
POSTED: 11:53 am EDT July 20,
UPDATED: 1:50 pm EDT July 20, 2007
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- While police
continue their search for a missing woman whose house was destroyed by a fire
late last week, people in the neigborhood where her car was found said officials
have been canvassing the area asking them what they know about the case.
It's been nearly a week since Joey Lynn Offutt's car was found abandoned at
a State College apartment complex.
Some people who live at the Nittany
Garden apartments have been speculating about what might have happened to her.
"I thought it was an abduction. The cop wasn't sure," said Tom Gardner.
George Elder talked about what police asked him.
"They asked what we had
seen and they gave us pictures of her and her boyfriend and asked if we had seen
them lately and any other information we had on them," he said.
1994 Saturn was found near where she once had an apartment. She has been missing
since last week when the house she was renting in Sykesville burned down. The
body of a baby was found inside the home. Investigators are still waiting for
autopsy results to determine if it was Offutt's child.
In the meantime,
police have been asking for the public's help in finding her. Offutt is a
33-year-old white woman 5 feet 3 inches tall, with a thin build, brown hair and
brown eyes.
Anyone with information on Offutt or the fire is asked to call
Pennsylvania state police at 371-4652.

Joey's story is also now on Court TV's Crime Library: It mentions that Joey had mentioned the birth of a son on a website last month, even though news articles had stated she only had two children. (I had seen something like that during a Google blog search and wondered if it was the same woman.)

Audrey Herron: Riding for Audrey 2007

The anniversary of Audrey's disappearance is coming up next month. Audrey's place of disappearance is usually listed as Catskill, where she was last driving.

Friends, family gather in remembrance of missing woman
Updated: 7/22/2007 5:42 AM
By: Web Staff

GREENE COUNTY, N.Y. -- Friends and family of a missing
woman gathered together hoping to shed light onto her abrupt disappearance
nearly five years ago.
Audrey May Herron was last seen on August 29, 2002
when she left her job as a nurse for home at around 11 p.m. She never completed
the half hour drive, and neither she nor her 1994 Jeep Cherokee have been seen
Bike rally for Audrey May Herron
Friends and family of a missing woman gathered together hoping to shed
light onto her abrupt disappearance nearly five years ago.
ride for Audrey included music, food, games and a poker run at Brennan's School
House Inn in Earlton.
“Someone somewhere knows something and with this bike run and all these
people and their support, we're able to once again remind you to ask the
question, once again,” said Marie Parker, Audrey Herron’s best friend.
There is a reward for information leading to Herron’s whereabouts. If you
have information about this case, call the New York State Police.

The number for the New York State Police is (518) 622-8600. You can also email them at

Audrey's website: (Apparently Audrey's old website,, has been lost somehow.)
Pictures of Audrey and her car from her NCMA poster.

Child's skull found in Ritzville, Washington in 2006

When the FBI tried to do a DNA test on the skull, they also were not able to extract enough DNA. They apparently hope, though, that someday they will have the technology to know who this little one is. Also, since it is not known for sure if it is Cody or Sofia, we still can hope that they will be found safe!

Older story from

Thursday, November 30, 2006 - Page updated at 08:44 AM
DNA tests fail to identify child's skull found near Ritzville
By The Associated Press
RITZVILLE — DNA tests have failed to establish the identify of a child
whose skull was found last summer in a field by U.S. Highway 395, and Adams
County Sheriff Douglas Barger hope the FBI can do better.
Scientists at the
health sciences laboratory of the University of North Texas in Forth Worth were
unable to extract enough DNA from the bones, Barger said Wednesday.
"The FBI
thinks they might be more successful," he said. "I hope they are, because we've
got to identify who it is."
A farmer found the skull in three pieces Aug. 12
in a field just south of this Eastern Washington town, and no other bone
fragments were found despite an extensive search covering about 100 acres. The
bones had been damaged by field burning.
Investigators have said the skull
might be from one of two missing children - Cody Haynes, 11, who vanished from
his family's home in Kittitas in September 2004, or Sofia Juarez, 5, was last
seen in Kennewick in February 2003. Kennewick is about 70 miles southwest of
Ritzville, and Kittitas is about 120 miles to the west.
Richard Haynes, the
missing boy's father, has been under scrutiny from authorities in Kittitas
County. He reportedly told investigators he took a meandering 250-mile drive
that included the critical stretch of U.S. 395 in search of auto parts the night
his son vanished. He said he believed his son was a runaway.
The little girl
disappeared after being given $1 by her mother to buy candy at a convenience

If you know anything about the disappearance of either of these children, please call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678). For Cody, you can also call the Kittitas police at (509) 925-8534; for Sofia, you can call the Kennewick police at (509) 585-4208 or (509) 628-0333.

You can print a poster of Cody here and one of Sofia here.
Cody's website:

Sofia's website:

Pictures of both children from the NCMEC.

Jan Scharf now missing five years, Cameron Park, California

In the past year, the major news on Jan's case is that her estranged husband, who had been convicted of her murder even though no body was ever found, committed suicide, probably taking the secret of Jan's wherabouts with him.

Here is a condensed version of Jan's story from the North American Missing Persons Network, where she is listed as Jani Jo Thompson (Her maiden name, perhaps?):

Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: May 14, 2002
from Cameron Park, California
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date Of Birth: July 15, 1956
Age: 45
Height: 5'5"
Weight: 140 lbs.
Color: Brown
Eye Color: Blue
Race: Caucasian
Gender: Female
Jan Scharf, Jani Jo Scharf, Jan Sharpe, Jani Jo
Case Number: 024811
Details of Disappearance
Thompson was last seen on May 14, 2002 at her Cameron Park, California
residence. She had just returned from a 12-hour shift at the University of
California at Davis Medical Center where she worked as a nurse. She had filed
for divorce 5 months before but was still sharing the house with her husband,
Glyn Scharf, as the divorce proceeded. Around 8 pm, a neighbour said she heard a
woman screaming "No, no ... don't, don't" from the Scharfs' driveway then more
screaming. The screaming then stopped and she heard a car speeding away. The
neighbor's roommate went at her request to check outside and noticed that Glyn
Scharf's truck which had been in the driveway earlier, was gone. Her mother and
daughter reported her missing on May 18. The next day, police found Thompson's
abandoned car in Folsom outside a 24-hour gym, she frequented. Authorities found
no evidence of foul play in her car, her husband's truck or their residence.
People who knew her say it is uncharacteristic of her to leave and not tell
anyone. Her belongings were all left behind and her cell phone and ATM card
haven't been used since her disappearance. She also showed no sign that she
wanted to leave, she had just applied for a promotion at her job, was planning
her daughter's wedding, which was set for December 2002, was going to vacation
with friends on Memorial Day and dating someone new. On April 17, just weeks
before her disappearance, Thompson phoned police to report a missing gun from
her home and that her husband had told her he had it. On May 7, 2002, she called
again, saying she thought her husband was poisoning her morning coffee. A crime
lab found evidence of digoxin, a drug for slowing an irregular heartbeat, in her
blood. Thompson believed her husband wanted to make her sick so that she took
him back to take care of her. Scharf had packed her belongings, changed the
locks and invited girlfriends to stay at the house just days following her
disappearance. Scharf was arrested in May 2003 and charged with her murder. In
October 2004, a jury found him guilty of first degree murder and sentenced him
to 25 years to life in prison. Sometime after Glyn Wolfgang Scharf's arrest, a
necklace and ring belonging to his wife were found in a film canister hidden in
some ivy in front of one of his former girlfriend's house. Glyn Scharf was found
in his cell at Pleasant Valley State Prison on March 21, 2007 after overdosing
on antidepressant Amitriptalyne and died six days later in Coalinga Regional
Medical Center.
Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
El Dorado County Sheriff's Department
(530) 621-5703

Jan's profile from the California Department of Justice website is short enough to be used as a poster. You can see it at If you find a site that has an actual poster of Jan, please let me know!

Yansis Juarez now missing 5 years, Miami, Florida

If you do a Google News Archive search on "Yansis Massiel Juarez", you will find several articles on her, ranging from May 24, 2002, to February 20, 2006. Only one of them is in English, and that is the most recent one, a Nancy Grace transcript (also available for free at All of them, except for one (translated below), also cost money to access. However, the little beginnings that are visible tell us that she was from Coral Gables, she was Nicaraguan, she had satisfactory grades in school, and she did not present any problems. So, if you can look past the way she dressed and decorated herself, you can see a regular girl who is obviously very much missed by her family.

Here is an approximate translation of a Spanish-language article about her from May 26, 2002. You can see the original Spanish version at

Young Hispanic female disappears and police investigate Satanic "Gothic" cult in Miami

WASHINGTON DC, 26 May 02 (ACI) - The mysterious disappearance
of a young Hispanic female of 15 years of age led the Miami police
investigations towards the "Gothic" movement that had grasped minors in a new
Satanic fashion.
It's been three weeks since the minor Yansis Massiel Juárez
disappeared. A television channel that followed the case linked her with
youth who practice a new cult in Miami. It is the Gothic movement that obligates
its members to show off painted faces, dress totally in black, wear Satanic
decorations and, in some cases, even self-mutilate.
In areas
like Lincoln Road, Biscayne Boulevard and 112th Street, the police have found
participants of the movement in some public places like the Kitchen Club, in
whose environs the neighbors usually find cats and other animals carved up,
possibly in rituals.
"On many occaisions, the parents have no idea of what
their children are living, since these change clothing and make up themselves
inside their cars, before entering the clubs," warned Miami Police detective
Fernando Fernández, who is in charge of the case.
"Already three weeks have
passed since Yansis disappeared, and after so much time it is rare that she has
not communicated with her dear ones," added Fernández.
In declarations to the
newspaper El Nuevo Herald of Miami, the father of the minor, Juan Juárez,
affirmed that he was trusting that his daughter is alive and he asked her to
return home, assuring her that "there will be no reprisals".
According to
Juárez, the minor had friction with her mother, because "she did not like the
clothing or the makeup that she was using. She did not allow her to dress in
that fashion". Nevertheless, he assured that "we never knew that she had
friends from this group. She always arrived early and was with us", he
"When I asked her why she was making herself up in this way, she told
me that it was there because she liked it", explained the father surprised by
the disclosure of the televised images in which his daughter appeared with other
members of the movement.
According to the Herald, Yansis left her home
Sunday, May 5 and said goodbye to her cousin, assuring her that she was
returning soon. Sunday realized 20 days without news of the student.

If you know anything about Yansis' disappearance, please call the Miami police at (305) 579-6111 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

Besides wearing dark clothing and make-up, at the time she was between 4'10 and 5' tall and weighed between 90 and 110 pounds. She had black hair and brown eyes, with both ears pierced and piercings in her right eyebrow and tongue. She was also carrying a small backpack. At the time she spoke fluent Spanish and her English was poor. If she is still alive--and hopefully she is--she would be 20 years old.

You can print a poster of Yansis here.

More links:
- Spanish language article from April 15, 2003:
- Missing Children International:
- North American Missing Persons Network:
- The Charley Project:
- FDLE Missing Children Information Clearinghouse:
- Porchlight International:

Photos of Yansis from her NCMEC poster.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Alicia Markovich now missing 20 years, Blairsville, Pennsylvania

This year there were two news articles to mark the twentieth anniversary of Alicia's disappearance. I think the first one below, from The Indiana Gazette, was excellently done. It even included both a photo of her from 1987 and an age progression of how she might look now, whereas sometimes news articles do not include any photos of the missing people.
From :
Police still unraveling mystery of teen's 1987 disappearance

Written by Margaret Harper
Thursday, 26
April 2007
Twenty years ago, Alicia Bernice Markovich argued with her
divorced father about child support payments and walked away from his
Blairsville home, where she was visiting, during the evening hours of April 26,
1987, according to state police.
As she walked off, police said she ignored
her father's instructions when he yelled for her to return home by 8 p.m.
Those instructions would be the last words he ever spoke to his daughter, as
the 15-year-old Windber freshman disappeared, never to be seen by her family
again.Alicia Markovich's disappearance has puzzled state police and
investigators for 20 years. And on the anniversary of her disappearance, The Doe
Network, an international volunteer organization devoted to assisting law
enforcement with cold cases, is asking anyone with information to come forward
and help solve the mystery.
"It's like she vanished into thin air," said
Theresa Golden, Doe Network media representative for Pennsylvania.
that his daughter ran away, John Michael Markovich didn't report her as missing
until the next day, police said in reports. She was initially treated as a
runaway juvenile, but as time passed, it became apparent that might not be the
In 1990, days before the three-year anniversary of her disappearance,
state police announced that investigators would treat the case as a homicide,
according to Cpl. Kirt Allmendinger of the Indiana barracks.
"Surely, she
would've turned up in a three-year time period," Allmendinger said. "The
investigator believed Alicia Markovich was the victim of foul play."
As time
passed, police investigated any and all leads regarding the disappearance, which
didn't turn into anything substantial. But in 2000, her father received an
anonymous letter from someone who claimed to have murdered his daughter,
Allmendinger said. The letter, marked with a New Hampshire return address,
contained instructions on where to find her body.
Troopers followed up on
the letter and drove 10 hours to New Bedford, N.H., but an unidentified person
at the address had no knowledge of the letter or Alicia Markovich, police said.
Police do not believe the person at the address was connected to the case.
Police also dug up an area near the Conemaugh River outside Blairsville,
where the letter said her body could be found, Allmendinger said. But there was
no sign of her remains.
To this day, it's uncertain if the letter was a
Police have used different tactics in the case over the years. They
have received information locally as well as from out of state and follow up on
every lead, Allmendinger said. They also work with organizations such as the
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which, like the Doe Network,
researches cases in hopes of locating missing individuals.
And while it's
considered a "cold case," that doesn't mean nobody is paying attention to it, he
said. Though there are not active leads, police remain positive that the puzzle
can still be solved.
"We're still hoping that something comes in," he said.
"When it does, we follow up on it."
Allmendinger would not comment on
whether there are any suspects in the case.
"I can't say," he said.
message left Tuesday at a Blairsville phone listing for a John Markovich was not
returned. There are no current phone listings for Alicia Markovich's mother,
Marcie Smith, in Windber.
The other article, though it did not have photos and was published several days later, was also very well done. It is from
Published May 09, 2007 11:10 am - “It’s been assigned to different troopers
though the years. We need a lead right now. We have nothing to help us
20 years later, Windber teen's fate still a mystery
By Patrick Buchnowski
On April 26, 1987, Alicia Markovich left her Windber
home to visit her father in Blairsville.
The 15-year-old Windber Area High
School student was to spend the day with her dad, who planned to drive her back
home that evening.
But as the two discussed grades and her friends, the
conversation became heated.
The bright and energetic track athlete stormed
out of the house.
“She didn’t want to hear it,” John Markovich said at the
time. “She left in a huff.”
She hasn’t been seen since.
Authorities were
notified when she failed to return. Now, 20 years later, police are no closer to
solving her disappearance than they were back then. The search for a runaway has
turned into a homicide investigation, although investigators are unsure whether
the girl was murdered.
Patrick Buchnowski writes for The Tribune-Democ rat
in Johnstown, Pa.
“We don’t close out these cases,” said Cpl. Kirt Allmendinger of the state
police at Indiana.
“It’s been assigned to different troopers though the
years. We need a lead right now. We have nothing to help us out.”
is among thousands of children reported missing each year. In one year alone,
797,500 children younger than 18 were reported missing, according to the
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in Washington. Nearly 2,200
children go missing each day.
State police have been working closely with
the missing children’s organization, but Allmendinger said new leads are scarce.
The 2-inch-thick case file is filled with lab reports, letters and police
Alicia’s Social Security number and checkbook haven’t been used,
meaning no one has stolen her identity. Investigators believe that, if she were
a runaway, the woman would have surfaced by now.
Authorities thought they
caught a break when John Markovich received a letter in 2000 saying Alicia had
been murdered and describing where her body could be found.
But when investigators searched an area near a bridge on Route 220 near the
Indiana-Westmoreland County line, they found nothing. After tracing the return
address, authorities concluded the letter was a hoax.
“We don’t believe those
people (at the return address) sent the letter,” Allmendinger said.
passing of the years has not made it easier for Alicia’s family, who continue to
hope for her safe return.
“We cherish her memory,” said her grandfather, John
Markovich of Windber.
“We’re still hoping she will return.”
If you know anything about Alicia's disappearance, please call the Pennsylvania State Police at (724) 357-1978 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).
You can print a poster of Alicia here.

Friday, July 20, 2007

James Kos now missing 7 years, Monroeville, Pennsylvania

There don't seem to be any updates on Jim since I posted on him a year ago. A Google News Archive search also does not seem to yield any results on him.
The photo below is actually from The Charley Project, as it is slightly less grainy than the photos on NAMPN and the NCMA poster.


Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: April 22, 2000 from Monroeville, Pennsylvania
Classification: Missing
Date Of Birth: January 11, 1958
Age: 42
Height : 5'7"
Weight: 132 lbs.
Hair Color: Blond
Eye Color: Hazel
Race: White
Gender: Male
Distinguishing Characteristics: Kos wears eyeglasses
AKA: Jim
Details of Disappearance
Kos was last seen leaving his place of employment in Monroeville,
Pennsylvania on April 22, 2000. He never returned to his residence and has not
been heard from again..
Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Monroeville Police Department

You can print a poster of Jim at

Samantha Kibalo: New age progression

Hopefully this will increase Samantha's chances of being found safe; she has been missing for six years and five and a half months now.

Some possible locations where Samantha and her mother might be are Santa Fe, New Mexico (possible sightings of them there); New York City (her mom's car was found in Brooklyn); Illinois; New Hampshire; Palm Beach County, Florida; or Boynton Beach, Florida.

From Samantha's poster:
Family Abduction
DOB: Jan 1, 1999
Missing: Feb 3, 2001
Age Now: 8
Sex: Female
Race: White
Hair: Lt. Brown
Eyes: Brown
Height: 2'9" (84 cm)
Weight: 22 lbs (10 kg)
Missing From:
United States
Age Progressed
DOB: Mar 25, 1963
Sex: Female
Race: White
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Blue
Height: 5'0" (152 cm)
Weight: 120 lbs (54 kg)
Samantha's photo is shown age-progressed
to 8 years. She was abducted by her non-custodial mother, Ann Kibalo. An FBI
warrant for Kidnapping was issued for the abductor on January 15, 2002. They may
be traveling with a 12 pound red mini Tibetan Spaniel dog. The abductor may use
eyeglasses while driving. The abductor may seek treatment for a dental condition
and may frequent medical facilities and doctor's offices with Samantha.

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-843-5678 (1-800-THE-LOST)
Rockland County Sheriff's Office (New
York) - 1-845-638-5400 or Your Local FBI

You can print your own poster of Samantha here.

Jamie Thornton: New age progression

I couldn't remember if I had ever posted Jamie on this blog before, but according to my index I had done a post for the 20th anniversary of his disappearance. Anyway, there has been an update since then: a new picture of how he might look now if he is still alive.

Jamie Martin Thornton
Missing since October 4, 1986 from Pittsburgh, Allegheny County,
Classification: Endangered Missing
Vital Statistics
Date Of Birth:
November 12, 1984
Age at Time of Disappearance: 1 year old
Height and
Weight at Time of Disappearance: 3' 2" - 97 cm; 30 lbs - 14 kg
Distinguishing Characteristics: White male. Light-brown hair; brown eyes.
Marks, Scars: He has a birthmark on his right thigh.
AKA: His nickname
is "JT"
Circumstances of Disappearance
Thornton was last seen playing in the front yard of his home in Pittsburgh,
PA on October 4, 1986.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Pittsburgh Police Department
You may remain anonymous when submitting information to any agency.
NCMEC #: NCMC604669
NCIC Number: M-707755789
Please refer to this number when contacting any agency with information
regarding this case.

You can also call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

You can print a poster of Jamie here.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Gina DeJesus: New age progression

Earlier this year, the FBI had released to the media an age progression of how Gina might look now, in case that would help someone recognize her. Now the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has an age progression featured on Gina's poster, but it looks quite different than the FBI's.

Endangered Missing
DOB: Feb 13,1990
Missing: Apr 2, 2004
Age Now: 17
Sex: Female
Race: Hispanic
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Brown
Height: 5'1" (155 cm)
Weight: 135 lbs (61 kg)
Missing From:
United States
Age Progressed
Georgina's photo is shown
age-progressed to 17 years. She was last seen on April 2, 2004. Georgina may
still be in the local area. Her ears are pierced and she has a second piercing
in the cartilage of her right ear. Georgina has a birthmark on her right leg and
a birthmark on the right side of her chest. She may go by the nickname Gina.

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
1-800-843-5678 (1-800-THE-LOST)
Cleveland Police Department (Ohio) 1-216-621-1234
You can print your own poster of Gina here.

Here is the FBI's age progression of Gina, from; hopefully one of the age progressions will be close enough to Gina's actual appearance:

Gina's website:

Guestbook for messages to Gina's family:

You can "adopt" Gina through Project Jason's Adopt a Missing Person program. For more information, visit

Missing one week: Joey Offutt, Sykesville, Pennsylvania

I just learned about Joey today on the From Whispers to Roars forum. Here is the article they had, which seems to be the most recent available on her.

Posted on Wed, Jul. 18, 2007
Autopsy to tell whether baby is missing
33-year-old may be crime victim
By Pete Bosak -
continue to look for a woman with State College ties who is missing after a fire
destroyed her Jefferson County residence while they await autopsy results to
determine the identity of an infant found in the burned-out building.
are looking for Joey Lynn Offutt, 33, whose 1994 Saturn coupe was found by State
College police Monday on Waupelani Drive, near where she once had an
It is still unclear whether Offutt -- who had a 6-week-old boy --
had something to do with the fire at 4 a.m. Thursday that destroyed the
Sykesville residence. The body of an infant was found in the remains of the
Without the autopsy results, troopers cannot say whether the infant
is Offutt's son.
"Whether she was directly involved in this or if she was
abducted, investigators are chasing that all down right now," said state police
Trooper Bruce A. Morris, public information officer for Troop C. "It's almost
like she's fallen off the face of the planet."
State police are appealing to
the public for help find Offutt, saying it's possible she herself is a crime
"I'm confident this case is going to be resolved," Morris said.
"She's the key to this whole thing."
Offutt is a white woman, 5 feet 3 inches
tall with a thin build, brown hair and brown eyes.
She is officially a
missing person and state police have entered her into the National Crime
Information Center as such.
Anyone with information on her whereabouts is
urged to contact state police at DuBois at 371-4652.
Pete Bosak can be
reached at 235-3928.

An older article from a Virgina TV station suggests that the baby might not be Joey's son. From

VA Woman's Car Found
Pennsylvania authorities have located a car belonging to a
Virginia woman who hasn't been seen since the remains of an infant were found in
her burned-out home.
The red Saturn with Virginia license plates belonged to
33-year-old Joey Lynn Offutt, who previously lived in Warrenton, Virginia. The
car was found early Monday in State College, about 70 miles east of the home she rented in
Sykesville. The home burned down last Thursday and the cause of the fire is
still under investigation.
State police said in a statement that Offutt still
is missing and investigators are looking for her "out of concern for her
State police have not said they believe Offutt and the infant were
related. Offutt did have two children, and police say both are safe and staying
with relatives.

Neither of those articles had a photo of Joey, so the one posted above comes from

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Audrey Nerenberg now missing 30 years, Brooklyn, New York

A bill named after Audrey, H. R. 271, calls for extending the Missing Children's Assistance Act to include adults who have a mental age of less than 18 years. According to, on May 9 of this year, it was referred to the House Subcommittee on Healthy Families and Communities. This is listed as the "Last Major Action" on this legislation. To learn more about the Audrey Nerenberg Act, visit The website also allows members to voice their opinions on laws; according to its poll, 57% are in favor of the act and 43% are against it. Why would that many people be against it? Perhaps they agree with the comment of one user who does not see how a person's mental capacity could be established as less than 18 years old. What do you think?
Anyway, though, the main purpose of this post is to talk about AUDREY, to generate attention for her in hope that it might help lead to her being found, preferrably alive and safe.
Here is her story, from The Doe Network (also the source of the above photo and age progression):

Audrey Lyn Nerenberg
Missing since July 15, 1977 from New York City, New York County, New York.
Classification: Endangered Missing
Vital Statistics
Date Of Birth:
September 24, 1958
Age at Time of Disappearance: 18 years old
Height and
Weight at Time of Disappearance: 5'4; 115 pounds
Characteristics: White female. Brown hair; brown eyes.
Marks: She has
freckles on her face, shoulders, and hands.
Clothing: Cut-off dungaree
shorts, a blue tube top and open-toe clear plastic shoes at the time she was
last seen, as well as $2 to buy a pack of cigarettes. Nerenberg was also
carrying a small brown shoulder bag.
Medical Conditions: Nerenberg has been
diagnosed with hebephrenic schizophrenia. Nerenberg was taking the medication
Torrozine when she disappeared.
Dentals: Available. She has a small gap
between her upper front teeth.
Circumstances of Disappearance
Nerenberg was last seen leaving her family's home in Brooklyn, NY on July
15, 1977.
Nerenberg had been hospitalized for brief periods of time in several New
York City borough medical facilities from 1974 - 1977 due to hebephrenic
schizophrenia. Nerenberg was an outpatient at Kingsboro Psychiatric Center in
Brooklyn at the time she disappeared. She did not carry any identification or
medication with her at the time she was last seen. Audrey, who liked shopping at
Kings Plaza, had sometimes gotten lost close to home but always had the presence
of mind to call her father for help.
She may be listed as an unknown patient ("Jane Doe") in a psychiatric
hospital somewhere. Extensive inquiries into New York hospitals by the NY Police
Department have been futile.
Nerenberg accompanied her family to the borough of Staten Island during the
evening of July 14, 1977, the day prior to her disappearance. They watched a
movie at the former Jerry Lewis Theater on Forest Avenue in Mariners Harbor on
the Island.
She enjoyed shopping, music and dancing in 1977.
If you have any information concerning the whereabouts of Nerenberg, please
New York City Police Department
Missing Persons' Squad
Agency Case Number: 13606
NCMEC #:NCMC603933
Number: M-742560258
Please refer to this number when contacting any agency with information
regarding this case.
Audrey's website: It includes a way to send comments directly to Audrey's father.
You can print a poster of Audrey here.
Audrey's father, Milton Nerenberg, has written a book called Give Me Back My Daughter, Audrey!. I have not read it yet, but you can order it online at

Jon Dabkowski: New age progression

Still not much actual news in the cases of Jon Michael Dabkowski and Gabriel Minarcin, two friends who have been missing from Tarentum, Pennsylvania, for 25 1/2 years now. However, one measure that might help is an updated example of how they might look now. Jon's NCMEC poster now shows what he might look like if he still alive; he would now be 36 years old. Strangely, Gabriel's age progression has not yet been updated.

If you have seen either of these boys, please call the Tarentum police at (724) 224-1515 or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

You can print a poster of Jon here.

You can print a poster of Gabriel here.
All pictures of Jon (top row) and Gabriel (bottom row) from their posters.

Natalee Holloway: Texas Equusearch returning to Aruba (and other "news")

I can't find a news article to confirm this yet, but it is mentioned on a couple blogs (see and and on a forum topic ( Scared Monkeys says the search will take place in three to four weeks in deep water with help from Superior Offshore International.

Some of the comments on the Scared Monkeys post also mention something about Natalee's mother turning down a $4 million ransom demand and her father saying it was just tabloid news.

Another topic active on Natalee's Websleuths board is about an article recently printed in the Aruban newspaper Amigoe about an unauthorized Medjet landing in Aruba one day after Natalee went missing (see Some say that the Medjet was ordered by the Holloway/Twitty family in case Natalee would need medical attention when they found her. The thread has now been "locked" (no more replies allowed) because some of the Medjet theories seem so preposterous.

I guess we will probably have to chalk up the Medjet and the ransom under the "Natalee Holloway: Rumors and False Leads" category. And the category is unfortunately pretty large. But maybe, there is a bit of encouragement in that, too. To quote Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes books and stories:

"Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth."

On a more positive note, three people recently traveled to New Orleans, Louisiana, to promote awareness of the fact that Natalee is still missing. For more details and photos of the event, see

Anyway, if you have any actual information on the disappearance of Natalee Holloway, please call the FBI tipline at 1-877-628-2533.

The address I had for Natalee's website appears to no longer be valid. However, if you type in, you will be redirected to a flyer for Natalee.
One of probably many blogs about Natalee:
Photos from

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Jennifer Wilkerson now missing 3 years, Lubbock, Texas

Two young women with somewhat similar physical characteristics disappeared from the same Texas city two months apart. Obviously, authorities wondered whether there was a connection. The body of one of them, Joanna Rogers, was finally found in a landfill last year, based on a confession from her suspected murderer. The other one is still missing, and a connection seems less likely. Where, then, is Jennifer Wilkerson?

Wilkerson Family Speaks on Three Year Anniversary of Daughter's

of a missing Lubbock woman are sharing their story on the three year anniversary
of their daughter's disappearance.
Jennifer Lynn Wilkerson vanished on July
13th, 2004, three years ago Friday. She was last seen leaving a friends house
that night. Since then, the Lubbock County Sheriff's Department has interviewed
more than 50 people, 25 of whom submitted to a polygraph test, and there are
still no good leads.
"All we do know is that our daughter is missing and
we're very concerned," Jennifer's father, Jack Wilkerson, said.
were the words from Mr. Wilkerson nearly three years ago. Scared and concerned
over the disappearance of his daughter, Jennifer Lynn Wilkerson. Three years
later, that fear and concern continues.
"One day your frustrated that
nothing's happening. The next day you're depressed. The next day you're hopeful
and then you're feeling guilty, saying what could I be doing? Have a done
everything I could?" Mr. Wilkerson said.
Both Jack and Vikki Wilkerson have
spent the last three years searching and hoping for their daughter's safe
"She loved everything. Music, books, learning. She just enjoys
life," Mr. Wilkerson added.
But the stress they experience has caused
strain in every part of their lives.
"Life goes on, but we're not getting
on. We're just getting through each day and trying to figure out a way. It's
affected our entire family," Mrs. Wilkerson said.
"We don't know what
else to do. We've pretty much put it in the sheriff department's hands and it's
up to them because we don't know what else to do," Mr. Wilkerson added.
Lubbock County Sheriff's Department has, in the past three years, continued the
search for Wilkerson. They've never wavered in their determination to find her.
Major Don Carter said, "As far as the Sheriff's Office is concerned, we have
never considered this a case to put on the back burner."
And three long
years later, both the Sheriff's Department and the Wilkerson Family know that
somebody knows something.
"Imagine what it would be like missing your
brother, your sister, your mother, your father, your child...someone important
to you. Imagine not knowing where they were or what would happen to them, and
put yourself in our place," Mr. Wilkerson said.

If you know anything about Jennifer's disappearance, please call the Lubbock County Sheriff's Office at (806) 775-1601 or (806) 775-1604, or call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).
Jennifer's website (additional photos there):

Sofia Juarez: Photos to be shown nationwide on semi trucks

Other children who have been featured in this program are Shania Supanich (presumably the one found safe in Montana), Agueda Arias, Sofia Hernandez, and Francisco Rios-Carriere. Andre'anna Jackson was supposed to also be featured when the program was launched, but her remains had already been found. It seems to be exclusive to missing children from the state of Washington.
Article from

Sofia Juarez Pictures to Appear on Side of Semi-trucks Nationwide to Aid
July 13, 2007 08:29 PM EDT
KENNEWICK, Wash.- A new program by the
State Patrol is extending the search for Sofia Juarez, missing from Kennewick
since February of 2003.
Gordon Brothers Incorporated has postered the
pictures on the side of some of their trailers along with the words, "Have you
seen me?" The trucks will travel nationwide with the hopes someone will
come up with the key clues police need.
Sofia's mother calls it another sign
of hope.
"It's really exciting. It's something new for us. And
I'm really hoping that it really works and sooner or later we have, we're going
to have results for it," said Maria Juarez.
The posters are part of a
program between the trucking company, Kennewick Police and the State Patrol.
This is the sixth missing person statewide to be posted on a truck since the
program started.
One person has already been found in Montana.


Trucking company to aid in search for missing Kennewick girl
Published Friday, July 13th, 2007
The Kennewick Police Department and the Washington State Patrol are expected today to discuss a renewed effort to find Sofia Juarez, who has been missing for more than four years.
The new partnership will put Sofia's picture and contact information on five semi-trucks owned by Gordon Trucking, based in Pacific as part of the two-year program called Operation Homeward Bound.
The trucking company operates throughout the continental United States. The goal of the program is to have as many people as possible see Sofia's picture, which could help spark the one critical tip that would lead to finding her.
This past February marked the fourth anniversary of the girl's disappearance from her home on 15th Avenue in Kennewick. She would be 9 years old. Her case continues to be investigated as a missing and endangered child, according to police.
This would be the second time her picture was posted on a semi-truck. In 2003 a program called Operation Lookout, based in Everett, put as many as 100 pictures of missing children on trucks traveling across the country.
Sofia also was featured on a car during a NASCAR race and on an electronic billboard in New York City's Times Square. She has been featured on TV, nationally and in Mexico.
Detectives continue to receive tips about the case although they are little closer to finding her than they were after she disappeared.
On Feb. 4, 2003, Sofia reportedly asked permission to tag along on a trip to a convenience store about 8 p.m. with an adult who lived in the house. She loved sweets and had a dollar to spend. The store was less than a half-mile away.
But when the adult returned alone about 9 p.m., he told Sofia's grandmother that the little girl had not joined him and that he hadn't seen her.
Within hours, Kennewick police, Washington State Patrol troopers and officers from other departments as well as off-duty officers began searching for the girl. A Washington Army National Guard helicopter with a thermal-imaging camera was brought in to help. Divers searched the Columbia River.
Detectives on the case have chased down tips in Louisiana, Texas, Minnesota, California, New Mexico, Arizona and elsewhere.

If you know anything about the disappearance of Sofia Lucerno Juarez, please call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678), your local FBI office, or the Kennewick Police Department at (509) 585-4208 or (509)-628-0333.

Sofia's website:
You can print a poster of Sofia here.

Photo (left) and age progression (right) of Sofia from her poster.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Tanya Kach: Thomas Hose pleads guilty, sentenced to 5-15 years

Man Accused Of Harboring Runaway For Decade Pleads Guilty
Hose Allegedly Held
Kach Captive In His Home
POSTED: 10:13 am EDT June 26, 2007
pm EDT June 26, 2007
PITTSBURGH -- 3:40 PM UPDATE: Below are excerpts from
former Tanya Kach's statement read in court on Tuesday:
-- "You took away my
innocence, my childhood, made me think my family didn't want me or love me, that
no one cared for me or loved me but you."
-- "For 10 years, you dominated
me, controlled me, what I ate, drank, what I wore. How I looked. How I acted.
It's so sad to say, but I was a puppet, nothing but a puppet."
-- "Mark my
words, I will let people know in due time exactly what you've done to me. I want
people to know what kind of monster you really are."
-- "I am standing here
a complete, changed person. ... Remember how you always used to say to me, 'Oh
you're just a pretty face. You're stupid. You're not going to get anywhere in
life. You're nothing without me.' Well, let me tell you I'm not so stupid. I got
my GED in seven months, just finished my first semester in college with very
good grades. I plan on making a success out of my life. I plan on going places
and I'm going there without you."
-- "The main thing I want to do is help
protect children and women from men like you."
2:30 PM UPDATE: Judith Sokol,
hairdresser accused of aiding Hose, pleaded no contest to reduced charges.
former school security guard accused of keeping a teenage runaway in his home
for a decade and having sex with her pleaded guilty to all charges he faced on
Tuesday and will spend five to 15 years in prison.
Thomas John Hose, 49, of
McKeesport, took in the then-14-year-old girl and, for a decade, kept her from
leaving the tiny home he shared with his parents and son, prosecutors said.
Tanya Nicole Kach, now 25, has said the two regularly had sex during the
time she was in the home.
Find out what happened inside the courthouse
tonight at 5 on Channel 11.

The full text of Tanya's statement, from
Text of Tanya Kach's victim impact statement
Tuesday, June 26,
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The following is the text of a hand-written
victim impact statement that Tanya Kach read to Judge John A. Zottola before
Thomas Hose was sentenced to five to 15 years in prison for sexually assaulting
her when she was under the age of 16 and not informing adults of her
I just want to know why you did what you did to me for ten
years. Why? You took away my innocence, my childhood. Made me think my family
didn't want me or love me, that no one cared or loved me but you. Made me think
that you were the only one in the world for me.
For ten years you dominated
me, controled me, what I ate, drank, what I wore, how I looked, how I acted.
It's so sad to say but I was a puppet. Nothing but a puppet. I really don't know
if I can ever forgive you for what you've done to me. But mark my words, I will
let people know in due time exactly what you've done to me. I want people to
know what kind of a monster you are.
But there's some things I want to let
you know. I am standing here a completely changed person. I'm not that dominated
puppet anymore. I am a very independent woman who has a lot of self confidence.
Remember how you always used to say to me. "Oh your just a pretty face. Your
stupid not going to get anywhere in life, your nothing without me."
Well let
me tell you I'm not so stupid. I got my GED in 7 months. Just finished my first
simester in college with very good grades. I plan on making a sucsess out of my
life. I plan on going places. and I'm going there without you. But the main
thing I want to do is help protect children and women from men like you.
know that God granted me the strength to get through what I endured from you for
a reason. now you get to know what it's like to need that kind of strength. but
you don't get to ask for it. Because I get to say to you what you've said to me
so many times quote "Shut up I'm talking" end quote and don't ever forget God
hates ugly.

The trial was supposed to take place in May but had to be postponed as Thomas Hose was at a state hospital (see

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Heaven Ross: Body released to family

I guess I hadn't realized that Heaven's identity still needed to be confirmed. Hopefully now they can find out who did this.
Remains of missing Northport girl released to family
6/28/2007, 12:42
p.m. CDT
The Associated Press

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — Police
have returned the remains of a Northport girl to her family after DNA tests
confirmed they are those of the 11-year-old who disappeared on her way to school
in 2003.
The remains of Heaven LaShae Ross were found in an abandoned house
by a man walking his dog six months ago. After DNA testing at Louisiana State
University, they were returned to Alabama a month ago.
Capt. Loyd Baker,
commander of the Tuscaloosa County Metro Homicide Unit, didn't confirm that she
had been identified until Wednesday.
"We've consulted several forensic
specialists over the last four weeks to make certain that we had done all the
tests we needed to do before we released her body," Baker said.
No one has
been charged in her disappearance.
Shae was last seen walking to her bus stop
in Willowbrook Trailer Park on Aug. 19, 2003. Her skeletal remains were found in
December at the home overlooking Hurricane Creek at the end of a long, isolated
dirt road. Authorities said the girl's backpack was found near her
Shae's body will be cremated Thursday.
Her mother, Beth
Lowery-Thompson, said she'll pick up the ashes Friday night or Saturday
Thompson said that having Shae's remains brought her a little
"I don't worry as much now," she said. "I know where she is, that
she's not somewhere hungry, cold and being abused."
The investigation into
Shae's death is ongoing. The family held a memorial service in December after
her body was found. Lowery-Thompson plans to have Shae's godmother and godfather
present when she returns from the funeral home with her daughter's ashes.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Ashley Martinez now missing 3 years, Saint Joseph, Missouri

A little less than a month ago, Ashley Renee Martinez was included in the CUE Center's Road to Remember Tour. An article mentioning the rally can be read at Photos from that and other news on Ashley are featured on her thread on the Project Jason forum,

From the North American Missing Persons Network:
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: July 6, 2004 from St. Joseph, Missouri
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date Of Birth: January 24, 1989
Age: 15
Height: 5'3"
Weight: 110 lbs.
Hair Color: Sandy Blonde
Eye Color: Blue
Race: White
Gender: Female
Distinguishing Characteristics: Scars on left wrist,peircing holes for her ears, tongue, and belly button.
Medical Conditions: Bi-Polar Disorder
Clothing: Black top, blue jean shorts, white Reebok tennis shoes, and black bikini with red cherries on it underneath her clothing.
NCIC Number: M-874158505
Case Number: 04-26313; NCMC993587
Details of Disappearance
Ashley was last seen at a local public pool on July 6, 2004 in St. Joseph, Missouri. She was persuaded into leaving the state with a 32 year old sexual predator, Christopher Hart. He picked her up near the pool in his dad's gray 1995 Pontiac Bonneville with Missouri license plate, 377MPY.In September 2004, Hart was arrested in Olympia, Washington, and is awaiting extradition back to Missouri. Hart exhibited bizarre and unorthodox behavior while in jail. He has been sent to Western State Hospital for a mental evaluation, prior to his arraignment in court. Since his arrest, he has been uncooperative about Ashley's whereabouts or the location of the car.
Ashley's mother describes her as a beautiful girl who loves to read
and has a great sense of humor.
In 2005, the Carol Sund Foundation offered a $5000 reward for any information regarding the whereabouts of Ashley Martinez.
Investigating Agency
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
St. Joseph Police Department
(816) 271-4747

You can also call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).

Ashley's website:
Guestbook for messages to Ashley's family:
You can print a poster of Ashley here.

You can "adopt" Ashley through Project Jason's Adopt a Missing Person program. For more information, visit