MP of the week: Clayton McCarter

This week’s featured missing person is Clayton Lynn McCarter, a 15-year-old boy who disappeared from the Potter Children’s Home in Bowling Green, Kentucky on January 15, 2014. He and another resident of the facility, 13-year-old Rodney Michael “Mikey” Scott, reportedly ran away together and haven’t been seen since.

Although the boys did apparently leave on their own and are still listed as runaways, there is significant reason to be concerned here: both boys left without any shoes, and Clayton has ADHD and oppositional defiant disorder, and is also mentally disabled with the capacity of a five-year-old. These were quite vulnerable boys. Less is known about Rodney, but Clayton’s disabilities make it unlikely that he could have survived on his own for even a week or two, never mind eight years and counting.

Clayton is white, 5’11 and 160 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes and a pierced left ear, though he wasn’t wearing an earring at the time of his disappearance. Rodney, also white, is 5’4 and 110 to 120 pounds, and has brown hair and brown eyes. He has a small birthmark on his forehead. Clayton was last seen wearing a t-shirt over a collared shirt, pajama pants and socks. Rodney was wearing a black jacket and socks; I’ve got no info on his pants.

MP of the week: Racheal Hayson

This week’s featured missing person is Racheal Dawn Hayson, a 14-year-old girl who disappeared from Richmond, Missouri on June 20, 1997. She’s described as white, 5’2 and 128 pounds (though she may have grown taller since then), with triple-pierced ears, a gap between her two front teeth, and small scars on her legs.

She had an argument with her mom on the day of her disappearance and left home angrily, and never returned. Her case was classified as a runaway for many years, and Racheal’s mom seems to have been hopeful, since when the mom died in 2008 her daughter was listed in the obituary as a survivor.

But it’s very unusual for there to be NO TRACE of a runaway in all this time — nearly a quarter-century now — and inevitably one wonders if something bad happened to Racheal. It’s hard to tell, due to a lack of available information in the case.

If still alive, and I hope she is, she’d be 39 today.

Erin Foster and Jeremy Bechtel located

To the surprise of no one, the remains of missing teens Erin Leigh Foster, 18, and Jeremy Lee Bechtel, 17, have been identified inside the wreckage of Erin’s car, which was found in 13 feet of water in a local river near Sparta, Tennessee. Per the article, the car was “almost completely intact” and it looks like they just ran off the road, poor kids.

It’s been 22 years in April, and I’m sure their families are relieved that they’ve found answers. May Erin and Jeremy rest in peace.

I’m feeling a lot better today.

Well, it happened

A year and a half ago I wrote on this blog about a Supreme Court decision that I was pretty sure was going to wind up affecting some of the Charley Project missing persons cases. And, lo and behold, it has.

I just started writing up Faith Lindsey‘s a murder-without-a-body case. Charges were filed against her boyfriend, then dismissed because of this Supreme Court decision that meant the state of Oklahoma did not have jurisdiction, then charges were refiled in federal court and the murder case is pending there.

Now, I might have a slight interest in reading about legal rulings of this kind, but I am not sure the average Charley Project reader has the same interest. It seems to me that a paragraph about the McGirt ruling and its significance would probably just clog up Faith’s casefile.

My husband suggested I say “dismissed on jurisdictional grounds and then refiled in federal court”, and then add the McGirt info in a footnote or something. Hmm.

So many watery graves

Due in part to the activites of Adventures with a Purpose (and they are awesome, check them out and give them money or something), it seems like there have been quite a few missing persons are turning up inside their cars inside lakes and rivers lately. I have many cases to resolve.

Most recently we’ve got, in no particular order:

  1. Miriam Ruth Hemphill, 84, missing from Oak Ridge, Tennessee since July 22, 2005. Her vehicle was found in Melton Hill Lake with human remains inside.
  2. Samantha Jean Hopper, 19, and her unborn baby, and her 1-year-old daughter, Courtney Esther Danielle Holt., missing from Russellville, Arkansas since September 11, 1998. Their car was found in eight feet of water in Pope County, Arkansas, although the news articles I’ve found haven’t said which specific body of water.
  3. Judith Ann Chartier, 17, missing from Chelmsford, Massachusetts since June 5, 1982. This was a surprise, as everyone had suspected foul play in her case. But it turned out she’d (probably accidentally) driven her car into the Concord River in Billerica, Massachusetts. The remains inside have already been identified as hers.
  4. Van Thay “Stephanie” Nguyen, 26, and her two children, 4-year-old Kristina Thay Nguyen and 3-year-old John Thai Nguyen, missing from Cincinnati, Ohio since April 18, 2002. Their vehicle was found in the Ohio River in October, something which isn’t terribly shocking since Stephanie had threatened to drive into the river and they were last seen near a boat ramp.
  5. Brian E. Goff, 64, and his 55-year-old girlfriend Joni E. Davis, missing from St. Clairsville, Ohio since June 10, 2018. Their car was found in the Ohio River with two bodies inside, still seat-belted in.

In these cases where multiple people were involved, I am not sure what to do at this point. Like, we can safely assume that the human remains inside Miriam Hemphill’s car are Miriam’s. But when people disappear like this and years or decades later it turns out they drove into water, sometimes not every person can be recovered. Like, it’s entirely possible that the remains found in the Nguyen’s car belong to just one or two of them, and the river took the other person.

Of course in such a case the individuals not found in or near the vehicle would be presumed dead as well, but the Charley Project usually keeps the case up until remains are found, regardless of what the circumstances indicate.

I’ll start sorting it out tomorrow I guess.

MP of the week: Adan Velasco

This week’s featured missing person is Adan Andrada Velasco, an 18-year-old boy who disappeared from Austin, Texas on May 2, 2007. He’s described as Hispanic, 5’9 and 140 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes, and a tattoo on his abdomen of a shield with the initials AV and the number 88. I have a photo of the tattoo.

It’s not clear whether Adan ran away from home or what, but it’s mentioned he could be in the Chicago area and may be with a white Maltese dog.

He suffers from an unspecified mental illness or illnesses. He’d be 33 today, and has been missing for close to half his life.

MP of the week: Adriana Bejarano

This week’s featured missing person is, like the case I was discussing earlier, another obscure missing child case that for whatever reason never seems to have made it into the NCMEC database: Adriana M. Bejarano, a 15-year-old girl who disappeared from her Ephrata, Pennsylvania home on November 28, 1988. From all appearances she left her house voluntarily, but my guess is she didn’t intend to be gone as long as she has been.

She’s described as Hispanic and Colombian-American. 5’3 and 125 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She had braces at the time of her disappearance and may have been last seen wearing a black trench coat and jeans.

I have to wonder if perhaps she had a secret boyfriend, maybe a much older man, and this is the person she went out to meet.

If still alive, Adriana would be in her late forties.

Still thinking about the Barbara Kelley/Red Baird case

It’s not often that I come across an old case of a missing child from the US that I’ve literally never heard of in my life, but when it happened the other day with 17-year-old Barbara Joe Kelley, missing since 1950, and I immediately added it to Charley.

Before the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office put up a listing of unsolved cold case homicides and missing persons (in chronological order with Barbara at the very bottom), she wasn’t listed anywhere. I’m hoping now that she’s on Charley, other databases will follow suit and add her. I found a better quality copy of the second photo I originally posted and replaced the image today.

I don’t think it’s possible to arrest anyone at this point; whoever did this is almost certainly dead. But it might still be possible to find Barbara and lay her to rest. And in any case, Barbara, Henry “Red” Baird, and this tragic mystery should be remembered and honored.

Gayle Patrick Irish seems like a good suspect to me. The fact that he is said to have been in a mental hospital at the time of his confession is not necessarily an indication he was mentally ill; back in those days a lot of state mental hospitals had dedicated units for “sexually disordered offenders” whose “disorder” was merely that they couldn’t seem to stop raping people or molesting kids.

At the time he was arrested for the sex crime for which he was incarcerated at the time of his confession to killing Barbara, Red, and the Marysville man, he had a hunting rifle in his possession. The police confiscated it, but they don’t seem to have paid any particular mind to it at the time. And why should they have? Irish wasn’t, at the time, suspected of having committed any crimes with a gun; all of his known offenses had been committed with his penis.

By the time Irish made his statements about the murders, the rifle had been lost and it was apparently never found. What a great shame that it was, cause it would have been nice to see if they could have made a ballistics comparison with the Kelley/Baird and Marysville crime scenes.

Unfortunately Irish disappears from the headlines after they were unable to locate Barbara’s body. I don’t know what happened to him or if he ever recanted his statements. If he was alive today he’d be over a hundred by now.

Thoughts?

AP dump today, first in awhile

Today I updated what felt like about a million missing persons’ age-progression photos. As is the custom, those aren’t crowding up the Charley Project’s updates page; instead I’ll list them below

  1. LaMoine Jordan Allen
  2. April Dawn Andrews
  3. Bob Louis Richard Boyes
  4. Laronda Marie Bronson
  5. Gina Dawn Brooks
  6. Kellie Marie Brownlee
  7. Olivia Addison Edwards-Tuttle
  8. Randi Layton Evers
  9. Robert Joseph Fritz
  10. Jose Francisco Fuentes Pereira
  11. Izar Isaac Godinez Sanchez
  12. Royce Henson
  13. Ethan James Hernandez
  14. Melissa Suzanne Highsmith
  15. Mark Joseph Himebaugh
  16. Alice Fay Jefferson
  17. William Ebenezer Jones III
  18. Karen Beth Kamsch
  19. Dennis Lloyd Martin
  20. Laureen Ann Rahn
  21. Benjamin Melvin Roseland
  22. Aaron Cody Stepp
  23. Marisa Velasco
  24. Mary Anne Wesolowski
  25. Shawn White