MP of the week: Barry James Kephart II

This week’s featured missing person is Barry James “Bucky” Kephart II, an eleven-year-old boy who disappeared from Albuquerque, New Mexico on August 22, 1981. This is an exceptionally sad case, an all-but-confirmed child abuse homicide at the hands of his father, Barry Kephart Sr.

Unfortunately, charges can’t be filed in this case because at the time of Bucky’s disappearance, New Mexico had a fifteen-year statute of limitations on that type of crime. The statute of limitations no longer exists, but for Bucky it expired in 1996.

FINALLY another “Let’s Talk About It”

It’s been awhile since I did my last “Let’s Talk About It” case, but I haven’t given up on them. This week is a double disappearance: Diamond Bynum and her her two-year-old nephew, King Rajan Walker, who disappeared on July 25, 2015.

Diamond was 21 and suffered from Prader-Willi Syndrome, a genetic condition characterized mainly by mental disability and a constant feeling of hunger. If not kept supervised, people with this condition will just eat and eat and eat until they get sick. At 4’10, Diamond weighed well over 200 pounds, and she had the mental capacity of a five- to seven-year-old.

She had recently moved with her parents to Gary, Indiana, and her nephew, King Walker, was visiting. Apparently the two of them slipped out while Grandma was taking a nap. Diamond regularly walked in the neighborhood in the town where she used to live, but that was safer because she’d lived there all her life and the locals knew her and knew she was disabled and looked out for her.

But she wasn’t familiar with Gary, and, well, Gary is an awful place. It’s regularly ranked as one of the ten most dangerous cities in the country and something like one-fifth of the population lives under the poverty line. The city is a swath of urban decay, with all sorts of ramshackle abandoned buildings — it’s really sad.

I think this case would have gotten more media attention if Diamond and King had been white, or more affluent, or at least disappeared from a more affluent area. But I do have to wonder what happened to them.

Foul play seems like an obvious answer…but why? The family seems to be in the clear. An extensive search of the neighborhood, all those abandoned buildings, turned up doodly squat. No one seems to know anything. I can’t think of a kidnapper or a serial killer or a human trafficker who would want BOTH a very overweight, mentally disabled young woman AND a two-year-old boy. It seems like one or the other should have turned up.

So what caused these two to disappear? Let’s talk about it.

MP of the week (a day late sorry): Beatrice Lopez Cubelos

This week’s featured MP is Beatrice Marie Lopez Cubelos, who disappeared from Albuquerque, New Mexico in the early morning hours of September 24, 1989. She decided not to wait on a ride home from a friend, and to hitchhike instead. She never made it.

Offhand, I wonder if Beatrice might have been one of the victims of David Parker Ray. She disappeared in his territory.

Make-a-List Monday: Black/Hispanic

This list is of people who are biracial and of African-American and Hispanic descent. On this entry I wrote about a missing young girl who was listed as Hispanic but “looked” black to me. Someone posted the following comment:

I just wanted mention that being Latino and looking Black are not separate cultural states. There are many Latinos who are of Afro-Caribbean heritage given that a great deal of Latin America takes place in the Caribbean and historically much of the African slave trade took folks to Latin American islands and nations on the Caribbean and near-Atlantic.

This list isn’t that long; I expect there are probably more people on Charley that meet the requirements, that I just don’t know about.

  1. Patrick Kennedy Alford Jr.
  2. Osvaldo Baro
  3. Terrance S. Bonilla
  4. Michael James Borges
  5. Devin Janelle Brown-Bousetta
  6. Kamyle Stephanie Burgos Ortiz
  7. Gebar Lynon Byrd Jr.
  8. Marco Antonio Cadenas
  9. Keyla Contreras
  10. Natasha Paula Corley
  11. Pinkie Mae Davis-Herron
  12. Nadia Lynn Drummond
  13. Acacia Nicole Duvall and Jon Pierre Duvall
  14. Sarah Raquel Elsafi and Tariq Ahmed Elsafi
  15. Youssef Nabil Elsayed Hassan
  16. Kristopher Bryan Lewis
  17. Gustavo Machado
  18. Natanalie Marie Perez
  19. Victor Leonard Richardson III
  20. Rolando Salas Jusino
  21. Abigail Smith and Isabell Lena Smith
  22. Irwin Yafeth Stewart
  23. Jocelyn Emilia Turcios
  24. Elyssa Marie Vasquez

MP of the week: Jason Armstrong

I’m at home. Internet is not shut off yet, so I took the opportunity to update my missing person of the week. This time it’s 18-year-old Jason Lee Armstrong, missing from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Unfortunately I know very little about his case, not even the exact date of disappearance — just that his family last heard from him sometime in August 2000. He wasn’t reported missing till 2004.

Make-a-List Monday: Out-of-date photos

A list of MPs where the only pictures I have of them are very out-of-date. “Very” is kind of subjectively defined — I mean, if it’s, say, a two-year-old photo of an adult, that’s not as significant than if the MP is only four and the most recent photo is two years old. Offhand I’d have to say at least five years for adults and less for children, depending.

With some of these photos it’s just sad — some of them are, like, decades out of date. This kind of problem is much less likely to happen nowadays when everyone is always snapping pics with their camera phones and uploading them to the cloud. In a modern case, if there are no recent photos available, it can be an indication that the MP has been missing a lot longer than people want the police to know.

  1. Tyler Jay Augustin
  2. Stephen Shawn Austin
  3. David Barnes Sr.
  4. Lindall Ray Benedict
  5. Susan Maria Ann Cerritelli
  6. Walter Dunson
  7. Inisha V. Fowler and Ivon D. Fowler
  8. Richard Burks Hart
  9. Marie D. Jost and Theodore J. Jost
  10. Ronald Owen Kimble
  11. Charles Ray Koller Sr.
  12. Thomas Mark Leahy
  13. Marilyn J. Lehan
  14. Perry Grant Matheson
  15. Gregory Robert Mitchell
  16. Dion Mike Napier
  17. Carol Frances Norton
  18. Karen Ann Penson
  19. Mary Kay Radford
  20. Ronald Kevin Ross
  21. Clifford J. Sather
  22. Jason William Noble Saul
  23. Jason Sims Jr.
  24. Hilary Harmon Stagg Jr.
  25. Aaron Cody Stepp
  26. Aarone Thompson
  27. Randal Richard Voss
  28. Francis Loretta Heath Wells

MP of the week: Michelle Lokker

This week’s featured missing person is Michelle Amy Lokker, who disappeared from Allegan, Michigan on June 7, 2003, at the age of 29. Her clothes turned up in or near the Kalamazoo River after her disappearance. I had it as IN the river, but a post on this Websleuths thread says the following:

I knew Michelle as an acquaintance. She seemed like a kind, good soul and decent person. I think she wanted to become a vet or work with animal rescue or something like that, but unfortunately I think she may have been become depressed. The last time I saw her she was a shell of her old self, it was heartbreaking. The only thing that I heard was that it was assumed suicide since her car and neatly folded clothes were found next to the Kalamazoo River. The river was searched but nothing was ever found. I’ve never heard any more details than that.

I couldn’t find any news on Michelle, alas. She does have a distinctive brand on her hip and I’ve got a sketch of it.