Ylva Annika Hagner’s case is back in the news. The Stanford graduate student, a Swedish immigrant, has been missing since 1996. (Here’s an essay by a Stanford student who knew her), and I haven’t seen any news about her this century, until now.
They have searched the Palo Alto, California home of her then-boyfriend, to see if she’s buried there. I’m not sure what prompted the search, whether some new evidence came up or they just felt like dusting off Ylva’s cold case file. The search didn’t turn up anything, unfortunately.
Some people would update Ylva’s casefile to add a sentence or two about the search. But I don’t see the point. Police search in a lot of places for missing persons, sometimes on evidence or a tip, sometimes on a hunch. And many times they find nothing. If I were to update the casefiles every time the cops learned yet a new place where the missing person is not, well…
Perhaps this search will still lead to something, even if they didn’t find Ylva. I hope so. She sounds like a lovely, interesting person. I’d love to be able to write a big update to the case. Better still, resolve it.
This week’s featured missing person is Elmer Edward Booth, an 81-year-old man last seen in Colfax, California on April 5, 1993. It was noted that he appeared “confused” that day, but I don’t know if he suffered from dementia or any other medical conditions.
Booth has no known relatives; it was his landlord who filed the missing persons report. He was last seen wearing a coat and boots, and he has a full set of dentures. His nickname is Boots. He has gray hair and gray eyes, and is 5’9 tall and 160 pounds.
Whatever caused his disappearance, he’d be 111 years old today so definitely not still alive. I wonder if, while on his daily walk to town, he might have had some kind of age-related medical event and collapsed. My guess is he’s not far from where he disappeared.
I hope all of you are well. I wrote a blog entry for last week’s missing person of the week but then it didn’t go up for some reason, entry disappeared. Last weekend I attended the annual Wisconsin missing persons awareness event as I do every year. It’s a very heartwarming event with lots of families coming together. They want me to be the keynote speaker next year.
This week’s featured missing person is David Alexander Marko, one of the oldest open family abduction cases the Charley Project has. David was three and a half when he was abducted by his non-custodial mother, Norma, from Burbank, California on April 17, 1993 — thirty years ago next month.
I suppose there’s no reason to suppose the boy is dead; most family abduction cases end with the missing child being found alive. But thirty years is a long time to be gone.
David is Hispanic, with brown hair and brown eyes, and a birthmark on the inside of his left thigh. Norma is also Hispanic, 5’2 to 5’4 and 160 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. She would be 64 if still alive today; David would be 33. Norma may use the last names Diaz, Garcia and/or Limon. She and David may travel back and forth over the Mexican border at Laredo, Texas, and may be in Houston, Texas.
If he’s in Mexico, that might explain why David is still listed as missing after thirty years. Our ability to find people is severely limited outside our own national borders.
Hope everyone is ok. I’m still dealing with the vomiting problem and was up all last night puking. I think I’m super depressed. I put my name in for therapy but I don’t get to meet the therapist until May.
This week’s featured missing person is Samiya Haqiqi, a 24-year-old Afghan immigrant and law student at Quinnipiac University who disappeared from Queens, New York on November 12, 1999. She is described as Asian, with black hair and brown or hazel eyes, 5’5 to 5’6 tall and 128 pounds. She went by the nickname Sammy. She was last seen wearing a white t-shirt, blue jeans, black platform boots, a baseball cap and a gold and diamond ring.
Authorities believe Samiya was killed by her boyfriend, Fahid “John” Popal, after she rejected his marriage proposal. In 2006, Fahid was sentenced to 26 years in prison for murder. His brother Farhad “Frank” Popal pleaded guilty to hindering prosecution.
This week’s featured missing person is Bob Perry Austin Jr., a 19-year-old man who disappeared from Jefferson, Louisiana on March 10, 1995. He was, for some reason, “fleeing” Ochsner Hospital, headed in the direction of the levee. He was never seen or heard from again.
Bob is black, 5’10 and 155 pounds, and was last seen wearing green flowered shorts and white socks. No shirt or shoes apparently. I wonder if he was a psychiatric patient who escaped.
Unfortunately that’s all the info I have for this young man. If still alive, he’d be 47 today.
This week’s featured missing person is Barbara Ann Johnson-Willard, a 29-year-old woman who disappeared from Jay, Oklahoma on June 17, 1996. She is white, 5’5 and 105 pounds, with pierced ears and scars on her nose, forearm and abdomen. Her nickname is Bobbie.
This is a murder-without-a-body case; authorities believe Barbara was killed by a coworker, John Lee Weeks. He was charged with her murder in 2011, but the charges were later dropped. Weeks is currently serving time in Kansas for sex crimes and isn’t due to be released until 2037. So he’s not going anywhere and perhaps could be brought up on charges again in Barbara’s case.
Whether or not he was involved in this case, somebody definitely hurt Barbara. As the casefile explains:
Shreds of clothing were inside the car’s trunk and gasoline tank. Blood and skin tissue samples discovered inside the trunk were matched to Johnson-Willard’s DNA; the body fluids found corresponded to a deceased person. Transmission fluid had been poured over the vehicle, but the car was not ignited.
I hope everyone is doing well. Unfortunately I’m still not feeling very well; I’m very tired and find myself struggling to stay awake at my desk when I try to work.
This week’s featured missing person case is that of Edward Larnell Martin, who disappeared from Tulsa, Oklahoma sometime in July 1999 at the age of 50. The exact date of disappearance isn’t known, so I’ve got it down as July 1. Edward is black, 5’10 and 145 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. His nickname is Chicken.
Oddly enough, Edward is related by marriage to Terrence Haney, who disappeared from Tulsa in 2001. I don’t know if the disappearances are related or if the men even knew each other. There isn’t a whole lot of information available in either case.
I hope you all are well. I voted today and the election worker who checked my ID said turnout had been good, even better than in 2020.
This week’s featured missing person is Sabrina Paige Aisenberg, who was abducted from her crib in Valrico, Florida on November 24, 1997, aged just four months old.
Her parents were subsequently charged with some stuff in the case, but the charges were dropped after it turned out there was basically no actual evidence against them. And there the matter rests.
I know there’s been a lot of suppositions and stuff bandied about on the internet about this case. I once spoke to a man who had been posting a certain photo of a young woman on social media, claiming she was an adult Sabrina. The police had already looked into the matter and told the man she was not Sabrina, but he kept posting the picture and making this untrue claim. I figured if someone was doing that with my photo, I’d want to know about it, so I contacted the woman and told her what was going on. She was horrified.
I doubt Sabrina’s parents were actually involved in the case at all. It seems more likely that the baby was kidnapped by someone who wanted to raise her, or by someone who wanted to sell her for adoption purposes.
Sabrina, if still alive — and there’s really no reason to think she isn’t — would be 25 years old today. She has some Y-shaped marks on her shoulder which might be used to identify her as an adult.
This week’s featured missing person is Verna Marie Richardson, a 48-year-old grandmother who was last seen in Fort Myers, Florida on July 7, 1990. She had begun dating a guy named Alexander Smith, but broke up with him the summer she went missing and was trying to reconcile with her husband.
Smith took her from her home on the day of her disappearance, apparently against her will. Verna was last heard from when she placed a pay phone call to say Smith had kidnapped her, tied her up and beaten her. For some reason she chose to call a friend to tell them this, instead of 911. She was never heard from again and Smith later crashed her car and was arrested for drunk driving. Richardson was gone by then, but Smith still had her purse.
I think there’s a pretty strong presumption of foul play here. I wonder where Smith is now, or if he’s even still alive.
Verna had multiple health problems, including insulin-dependent diabetes, and she needed dialysis. Even if Smith didn’t kill her, she could not have survived long without needing medical assistance.
In the unlikely event she’s still alive, she’d be 80 today. She is black, pierced ears, and she’s missing her two front teeth. She’s 5’8 and at the time of her disappearance she weighed somewhere between 180 and 225 pounds.
The verdicts in the Kristin Denise Smart murder-without-a-body case are back, and have been announced. Although father and suspected accomplice Ruben Flores has been acquitted, son Paul Flores was convicted of Kristin’s murder and faces 25 years in prison.
I bet he wishes he’d taken that plea deal they offered him, where he’d show them where he put Kristin’s remains and would only get six years. He’d be out by now, with that unpleasantness all behind him, young enough to start over.
Now he’s middle-aged–45 years old–and the 25-year prison sentence he’s facing might amount to the rest of his life.
It’s a sentence Paul thoroughly deserves, after he spent that same amount of time torturing the Smart family and accumulating drunk driving arrests and (allegedly) drugging and raping other women.