This week’s featured missing person is Terrence Arthur Diaz, who disappeared from Palo Alto, California on either October 14 or November 14, 1999. (I’ve seen two different dates.) He was 45 at the time and would be 66 today.
There’s reason to believe he may be living on the streets, possibly making some money busking. It is strange, however, that after all this time he still hasn’t turned up. I mean, almost 21 years now.
Happened to catch this breaking news about a new Supreme Court ruling. Headline: “Supreme Court rules swath of Oklahoma remains tribal reservation.” As the article explains:
The court’s 5-4 decision, written by Justice Neil Gorsuch, means that Oklahoma prosecutors lack the authority to pursue criminal cases against American Indian defendants in parts of Oklahoma that include most of Tulsa, the second-largest city.
The court’s ruling casts doubt on hundreds of convictions won by local prosecutors. The case, argued by telephone in May because of the coronavirus pandemic, revolved around an appeal by an American Indian who claimed state courts had no authority to try him for a crime committed on reservation land that belongs to the Muscogee (Creek) Nation.
If I am reading this right, this ruling may mean that Oklahoma state prosecutors cannot prosecute crimes that occur within that area, and such cases will have to be handled by either tribal authorities or federal authorities. Me being me, I wondered what effect this is going to have on the missing persons cases in that area. Tulsa alone has quite a few missing persons listed on Charley.
We’ll have to see what happens, I guess. Another uncertainty in what has become a year full of uncertainties.
This week’s featured missing person is Christine Julian, a 30-year-old woman who disappeared from Albuquerque, New Mexico on April 14, 2003. She is of Hispanic and Native American descent and has several tattoos on her legs, including a rose on her left leg.
She was last seen at her home in Albuquerque. At the time, relatives suggested she’d moved to Wisconsin where her biological father was. I would guess that lead has been ruled out by now.
She had a somewhat high risk lifestyle and drugs or alcohol could have been a factor in her case. If still alive, Christine would be 48 today.
I hope everyone had a good Fourth of July weekend. Mine was kind of terrible. We had a tiny party, four guests (Michael’s parents and two of his coworkers), and I wound up spending a lot of time hiding in the bedroom because I was so stressed by it all. And I was feeling like a failure in general, and wondering how I was going to pull off an entire wedding in October if I was freaking out from anxiety over four guests in my own house.
Of course, who knows if there will even BE a proper wedding in October the way COVID-19 is blazing through this country. I might wind up having to have a Zoom wedding ceremony because of the stupid government not listening to experts and not doing its job to contain the pandemic, and stupid people refusing to wear masks in public because mah rights and mah freedum. We could have been on par with Europe right now as far as flattening the curve goes, but nooooo, people have to be idiots.
(Of course I realize that my wedding is a very small thing in the grand scheme of things, and there are a lot of people out there who are suffering more than me as a result of COVID-19. That doesn’t make me any less angry.)
So some news from the missing persons world:
- Later this year, once Americans are allowed to travel to the EU again (assuming that ever happens), a private investigator, a former FBI agent and Annie McCarrick‘s uncle are going to Ireland to make another stab at solving Annie’s 1993 disappearance. (She is on the Charley Project because she was an American, though she disappeared on Irish soil.) They have a new theory about what happened, and have a suspect in mind. I don’t think it’s the same suspect the gardai (Irish police) have had their eye on. Neither person has been publicly identified.
The gardai think a former IRA member may have killed Annie. He sounds like a nasty character and allegedly raped a twelve-year-old girl, and possibly other victims, and the IRA sent him out of the country so he wouldn’t get prosecuted. He went to the US; I’m not sure where he is now.
I have wondered before why on earth the IRA would have assisted this man. To begin with, the twelve-year-old he allegedly raped was the daughter of another IRA member. And, though I don’t know much about the IRA, I know they had broad support among the ordinary people of Ireland, and it seems like that wouldn’t be the case if they routinely did things like try to help their child-rapist members escape prosecution. If any of you guys can provide some enlightenment on this, I’d appreciate it if you posted in the comments.
- They’ve created a park in Albuquerque, New Mexico in memory of the twelve victims of the still-unsolved West Mesa murders. I’ll say their names again: Jamie Caterina Barela, age 15; her 25-year-old cousin Evelyn JesusMaria Salazar; Monica Diana Candelaria, 21; Victoria Ann Chavez, 24; Virginia Cloven, 22; Syllannia, Terene Edwards, 15; Cinnamon Elks, 31; Doreen Marquez, 27; Julie Nieto, 23; Veronica Romero, 28; Michelle Valdez, 22; and Michelle’s unborn baby. All of the women, except Veronica, were on the Charley Project.
There are quite a few young women still missing from Albuquerque, and some of them fit the same profile as the women whose bodies were found on the Mesa. I’ve got Nina Brenda Herron, Vanessa Reed, Christine Julian, Leah Rachelle Peebles, Anna Love Vigil and Shawntell Monique Waites, and possibly others.
- According to a private investigator, the authorities have a suspect in the 2001 disappearances of of ten-year-old Tionda Z. Bradley and her three-year-old sister, Diamond Yvette Bradley. (The girls disappeared 19 years ago today.) The article says there’s a solid circumstantial case against the suspect (who hasn’t been publicly identified) but prosecutors want some physical evidence, preferably a body, to bolster their case before they file charges against the person.
Oh, and although this isn’t strictly missing persons related, I highly recommend y’all check out this article about the woman who invented the rape kit. Hers was a fascinating and tragic story.
This week’s featured missing person (which I didn’t change yesterday because I’ve been lazy and depressed) is Charles Jonathan Lawson, a 32-year-old man who disappeared from Tampa, Florida on February 12, 1988. He may spell his middle name “Johnathan” or just use the middle name John.
Unfortunately I don’t have any other details on this case, other than that he was last seen at his residence.
I hope everyone is in good health. Fortunately the number of positive coronavirus cases in my area and in the areas where my parents live have been pretty low, but I don’t expect it to stay that way, especially as Indiana has one of the lowest rates of public mask-wearing in the entire country.
Oh, and check out this article about Sean Wayne Evans‘s May 1984 disappearance, because it has some quotes from me. I was interviewed for it, like, months ago and didn’t even remember the interview until the article popped up in the news.
I first complained about the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s search engine back in 2013, and things got even worse with later versions of it. However, when I checked today, they’d made yet another version, which is slightly better than the last. Like, you can now search based on how old the child was when they disappeared. That’s kind of nice, I guess.
You still don’t have the ability to search by category, which they axed in 2013. As far as I can tell it’s because the NCMEC decided to phase out categories. They did this because when people saw “Family Abduction” or “Runaway” they just automatically tuned it out. I can understand the logic of the NCMEC’s thinking there.
I added Duke Flores‘s case today. It’s pretty awful. Probably not as bad as Noah McIntosh‘s (I blogged about his case in March), but it’s still pretty bad.
The whole story about Duke’s murder being prompted by his attempt he was trying to kill his infant cousin looks a little sketchy at first glance. However, both women gave the police the same account of the alleged attempted murder, and I wonder if Duke, who had autism, was just unable to deal with the baby’s crying. Most people with autism (including me) are very sensitive to noises.
They tried to cover up his disappearance by saying they’d taken Duke to a psychiatric hospital. If he was indeed trying to kill his cousin, this would have been a perfectly appropriate action to take. Certainly much more appropriate than strangling him.
We’ll never know if he really tried to smother the baby or not; the only two people alive to tell the story aren’t exactly credible witnesses. But no matter what he did there’s no excuse for murdering a six-year-old child with a disability.
The thing about his mom and aunt taking the other kids along while they disposed of his body is horrifying. Though the alternative would have been leaving them alone at home, and they were both really little. Hopefully too little to remember this later.
I hope these women get what’s coming to them. They are probably not very popular in jail; most of the women prisoners are mothers too.
This week’s featured missing person is Heather Dawn Mullins Zimmerman, a 19-year-old who disappeared on May 26, 1997. She was married, but living with her parents while her husband was stationed with the Marines in Japan. She apparently disappeared after leaving her parents’ Gifford, Illinois home to attend a party in nearby Rantoul. She may have been dropped off near her parents’ home at 3:00 a.m., but that hasn’t been confirmed.
Another woman, 20-year-old Jamie Harper, disappeared from Rantoul in 2007. Both Jamie and Heather are missing under suspicious circumstances, and the police stated they had the same person of interest in both cases.
Corey James Edkin was two years old when he disappeared from New Columbia, Pennsylvania on October 12, 1986. If still alive, he’d be 36 today.
His mom, Debbie S. Derr aka Debbie Mowrey, said she went to a nearby store shortly after midnight, leaving her roommate, her roommate’s two kids, Corey, and his sister asleep in the house. When she returned half an hour later, Corey was gone and the door was open. No one else in the house recalled having heard or seen anything unusual.
The case is still unsolved, but the police have said they’ve made “significant progress” in the case:
Tpr. Brian Watkins, the lead investigator in the Edkin case, said that investigators have made “significant advances in the Corey Edkin missing persons case” and “the individuals who caused this tragedy will be brought to justice.” […]
Troopers said they do not believe that the child walked away from the home, nor that he was abducted by any other person, according to a press release.
Watkins said that criminal investigators were recently able to make significant advances. Watkins said individuals with information on the case and advances in forensic technology have helped investigators piece together what may have happened to the child.
So the police aren’t saying much, but it’s easy to read between the lines here, isn’t it?
This week’s featured missing person is Kevin Lydell Maclin, a 32-year-old African-American man who disappeared from Unalaska, Alaska on November 19, 1997. A fisherman, he was last seen leaving the fishing vessel at the Unisea Docks at 9:30 in the evening, and may have gone to a local bar. The circumstances of his disappearance are unclear.
Unalaska is a small town of a little over 4,000 people on Unalaska Island and neighboring Amaknak Island in the Aleutian Islands off mainland Alaska. Given that the islands are not large, I’m surprised no trace has been found of Maclin. I can’t find any news articles on this case.
I’m sorry this is a day late. I’ve been feeling super depressed for over a week now and I’m not really sure why; in spite of what’s going on in the world, nothing terrible has happened to me. I’m thinking it might just be a bipolar downswing. That’s what I’m hoping, anyway. If it is, that means I’ll swing back up eventually.
This week’s feature missing person is Anna Cornelia Morris, a 64-year-old woman who disappeared from Columbia, South Carolina on May 29, 2011. She was last seen walking away from the home she shared with her daughter.
Morris had Alzheimer’s Disease and it’s possible her disappearance is related to that, but it’s unclear how far her condition had progressed. There’s “a bit forgetful” Alzheimer’s and then there’s “completely nonverbal and unable to recall their identity” Alzheimer’s. She was sometimes afraid of being left alone but it doesn’t say why she felt unsafe. She would sometimes go over to her sister’s home several miles away for company. This leads me to believe she was still functioning fairly well, if she could remember the route and so on.
If Anna is still alive, it’s possible she’s homeless and may not remember who she is. She would be in her seventies today, if still alive. I haven’t been able to find any news about her case in recent years, and I doubt she lived long after she was last seen.