Murder-without-a-body cases galore!

So, someone found a photo of Eli Robert Sharclane on Facebook so I was able to add his case to the Charley Project. I’ve blogged about his case before; it’s kind of unusual. A guy threw him off a bridge fifty feet down to the freezing water and he was never seen again, but the suspect was only convicted of ATTEMPTED murder, because it was 1977 and no-body homicide convictions were not really a thing yet.

More information has been released about the 1991 disappearance of Sabrina Leigh Long. All we knew before was that a female suspect was arrested and charged with kidnapping, someone who’d attended Sabrina’s high school but wasn’t in her year, and the police said multiple people were involved.

Well, this article has a LOT more stuff about the case. Basically, Sabrina said she was supposed to visit a neighbor on the day of her disappearance, but the neighbor said she wasn’t expected and he had no idea why she said she was going to see him. The neighbor, Keith Loyd, had an alibi and wasn’t a suspect in her case, but in 2017 he died by suicide and left a note implicating himself and Melinda McSwain (the woman now charged in Sabrina’s kidnapping) in Sabrina’s disappearance.

Loyd’s alibi for Sabrina’s disappearance had been that he was out with his girlfriend. I wonder if that girlfriend was McSwain. If both of them had kidnapped and killed Sabrina, it would be easy for them to alibi each other.

DonaMae Bourgeois Bayerl‘s husband John has been arrested at his retirement home in Florida and charged with murder. I’m so happy; he’s been a suspect for a very long time. I’ve met DonaMae’s family before; they attend the Wisconsin missing persons events.

Also, yesterday they held closing arguments in the trial of Liam McAtasney for the murder of 19-year-old Sarah L. Stern. She disappeared from Neptune, New Jersey in 2016. The second suspect, Preston Taylor, allegedly helped dispose of her body. He pleaded guilty and testified against McAtasney. The verdict is expected next week.

And Thomas Skeek is on trial for the murder of his wife, Linda Skeek, who disappeared in 2016. Per this article, case had been “shrouded in secrecy” and it wasn’t until the trial actually began that it became public knowledge that Linda’s body was never found. I haven’t heard of this case before. I’ll have to add her. [UPDATE: I did.]

2 thoughts on “Murder-without-a-body cases galore!

  1. Patrick Kerrigan February 24, 2019 / 4:22 pm

    Meaghan, thanks for the follow up on Sabrina’s case. I did not know tat the person she was supposed to visit had committed suicide. Also, I remember his alibi was that he was out on a date and did not expect Sabrina to be visiting. Which in one way should have set off some red flags. But, it seems weird in one way that you are going to visit someone after getting off work at midnight to look at some present a neighbor bought for his mother. But, then Sabrina had called her mother to check back with her in a certain time frame. So maybe she had some concerns about visiting him. But then where is her body.

  2. Melinda February 26, 2019 / 6:54 pm

    Thanks for this, Meaghan…I haven’t heard anything more about the Sabrina Long case for a couple of months. This case interests me for a couple of reasons. First, when it came out that a woman was involved in Sabrina’s disappearance. That surprised me for some reason. Second, the fact that the suspect’s name is the same as mine. I rarely ever meet or hear about other people named Melinda (besides Melinda Gates) so that made me take notice.

    From what I’ve read about the case, Keith and Sabrina were just friends. Apparently she had been friends with Melinda McSwain at one time too, and they attended the same high school. I don’t know if McSwain ever dated Keith but it’s a possibility. They all lived fairly near to one another. McSwain was a few years younger than Sabrina, though.

    What I wonder (besides Sabrina’s whereabouts) is what was the motive? A thrill? Jealousy? Maybe sexual advances that she rebuffed and McSwain or somebody else killed her? This is definitely one of many strange cases I’ve read about.

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