Tiktok girl, searching through ponds and other stories

Honestly… it’s been ten days and it’s still very hard for me to take my mind off of the situation or to get much of anything done. I really wish I would not live through any more major historical events; I think I’ve endured more than my share already. But I’m trying, guys. I really am.

Oh, and an update on my Facebook woes: my release date from Facebook Jail has been moved from early February to late January. 6:26 a.m. on January 23 to be precise. I have no idea why and I’m not sure Facebook will honor this release date, since they didn’t last time.

Arizona: They’re still looking for Elizabeth Emma Breck, a 46-year-old teacher who disappeared from the Sierra Tucson behavioral health center in Saddlebrooke in January 2019. She had just arrived a few days earlier for a thirty-day treatment program for PTSD. Nothing significant to report regarding her disappearance, just that the anniversary was this week.

Arkansas: There has been much talk over the last couple of days that a dark-haired girl with bruised eyes in a viral Tiktok video was Cassie Kay Compton, who disappeared from Stuttgart in 2014, at age 15. The FBI says they’ve identified and spoken to the Tiktok girl and it’s not Cassie. They haven’t released her name, but she has been identified elsewhere as Haley Grace Phillips, a Los Angeles woman.

California: They’re looking to see if David Emery Misch, the man recently charged in the 1988 murder of nine-year-old Michaela Joy Garecht, who was kidnapped from a Hayward supermarket and never found, was also responsible for the disappearance of thirteen-year-old Ilene Beth Misheloff from Dublin in 1989.

Connecticut: They’re released an age-progressed image of Vanessa Morales, a two-year-old girl who was last seen in from Ansonia on November 29, 2019. The cops found Vanessa’s mother murdered at home on December 2, with no sign of Vanessa. I’ll add her to Charley soon.

Florida: They’re still looking for Mary Opitz, a seventeen-year-old girl who disappeared from Fort Myers back in 1981. They’re also still trying to solve the murder of Mary Hare, whose abduction and killing may have had the same perpetrator as in Opitz’s case.

Illinois: They’re still looking for Steven Robert Asplund, a 32-year-old tool and die worker who disappeared from Moline on January 9, 1994. The 27th anniversary of his disappearance was a week ago but there’s nothing new to report.

Iowa: They’ve finally canceled the Amber Alert for Breasia Terrell, a ten-year-old girl who disappeared from Davenport in July. She is still missing.

Michigan: Brad Cournaya, the longtime suspect in 34-year-old Krista Robin Lueth‘s 2008 disappearance from Lansing, has been charged with her murder. Her body has never been found.

Mississippi: They’re still trying to identify a little boy whose skull was found in a drainage canal in Sharkey County in 2014. No other remains were located. He was estimated to be between 5 and 7 at the time of his death, which may have occurred up to several years before he found. Preliminary DNA results indicate the boy was black, and probably has relatives from Sharkey County and the surrounding area.

Kansas: Some divers from an Oregon-based organization searched two ponds in Leavenworth County for Randy Wayne Leach and his mom’s car, which have both been missing since 1988. They didn’t find them.

Maryland: They’re still looking for Andre Thompson, a sixteen-year-old who disappeared from Baltimore on June 23. He may be in the Glen Burnie area.

Michigan: They have located fifteen-year-old Gloria Alvarado, who was missing from Taylor for 75 days. She is alive and well, and had run away with a seventeen-year-old boy because her parents would not allow her to date. She has returned home.

New York: They’re still looking for Joseph David Helt, a seventeen-year-old boy who disappeared from Ellenville on January 17, 1987, thirty-four years ago tomorrow.

Nevada: They’re still looking for Cassandra Ayon, a 27-year-old woman who disappeared from Loyal back in October. In particular, the police are asking for public help for info on a red or maroon SUV that may have been on one of the residential side streets near Unity Trailer Court, which is where Cassandra was last seen.

North Carolina: They’re still looking for Ebonee Shanetta Spears, a 30-year-old woman who disappeared five years and one day ago. Nothing new has been reported though.

Also North Carolina: In Winston-Salem, they’re still looking for two missing adults: Lucinda Farris, who disappeared from in June, and Eliseo Ernesto Gomez-Martinez, who disappeared in November. There’s no indication the two cases are related.

Oregon: They’re still trying to identify a child whose body was found near a rest area in Lincoln County on December 10. The little girl had dark brown or black hair and was between six and a half and ten years of age at the time of her death, which occurred at least a month before she was found. Cops have ruled out several possibilities for the girl, including five-year-old Dulce Maria Alvarez, who was abducted from a New Jersey playground in September 2019.

Virginia: The police have reclassified the 2010 disappearance of 19-year-old Samantha Ann Clarke from a missing person to a kidnap/homicide. They have not said whether they have any current suspects in the case, but Randy Allen Taylor, who was found guilty of murder-without-a-body in the 2013 disappearance of seventeen-year-old Alexis Tiara Murphy, has been mentioned before.

Wisconsin: They’re still looking for Daajane Morgan, a sixteen-year-old girl who disappeared from Milwaukee on March 6.

Canada: They’re still looking for Alyssa Turnbull, a young woman who disappeared from Nipigon, Ontario in late March 2020.

Also Canada: Six patients went missing from the now-defunct North Bay Psychiatric Hospital in Toronto, Ontario between 1966 and 2010. They have never been found.

England: They’re still looking for Andrew Gosden, a fourteen-year-old schoolboy who disappeared from London in 2007. Andrew Gosden and another English missing person, Charles Horvath Allen, have both been featured recently on the podcast The Missing.

Trinidad: They’re still looking for Kelly Ann Seerattan, a 25-year-old kindergarten music teacher who disappeared from Princes Town in 2011. The article has some quotes from Kelly’s mom.

Navajo-language missing persons posters and more stories

From the border states: the the Missing Persons and Unidentified Remains Act has been approved by Congress and awaits the President’s signature to be signed into law. The Act is designed to enhance the recording and reporting of missing persons and unidentified persons along the U.S./Mexico border and includes several measures towards that end.

From Arizona/New Mexico: the FBI has released some Navajo-language posters about unsolved missing persons and murder cases that occurred on or near the Navajo Nation. The missing persons include Anthonette Christine Cayedito, missing from Gallup, New Mexico since 1986; Laverda Sorrell, missing from Fort Defiance, Arizona since 2002; and Jamie Lynnette Yazzie, missing from Pinon, Arizona since 2019. Serious question, and I mean no disrespect to the Navajo Nation: is there actually anyone who can read Navajo who cannot also read English, or are these posters more of a public relations exercise than anything?

From Arkansas: this article details the murder-without-a-body case of Christopher Todd Armstrong, who went missing from Magnolia on March 7, 1998. Although Kenny Wayne Whiddon Jr. pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the case, served his prison term and was released in 2008, Armstrong’s body has never been found.

From California/Oregon: they’re still searching for Danielle Bisnell, who disappeared on December 10 last year, while traveling from Lebanon, Oregon to Redding, California.

From California: they’re still searching for Angela Marie Fullmer, a 34-year-old mother of three who disappeared from Mount Shasta, California on December 15, 2002.

Also from California: they’re still searching for Manuel Calderon, who disappeared from Hacienda Heights on September 8 this year.

Also from California: they’re released more info on a “few details” case I had, the disappearance of Amber Aiaz and her twelve-year-old daughter Melissa Fu from Irvine on November 22, 2019. According to Aiaz’s husband, a Chinese man and woman rendered him unconscious with an unknown substance and when he woke up his wife and daughter were gone. Very strange. If the police think this is a kidnapping, I don’t understand why this information didn’t appear in the news for over a year.

From Illinois: Angela Renee Siebke has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of a newborn girl whose body was found floating inside a trash bag in the Mississippi River in Moline, Illinois on April 11, 1992. Siebke lives in Ohio now, but in 1992 she was a resident of Orion, Illinois. DNA proved she was the unidentified baby’s mother.

Also from Illinois: they’re still looking for Requita “Aaliyah” Goff, who disappeared from Chicago on November 28, 2019.

Also from Illinois: they’re found remains believed to be of Kimberly Stewart-Whittington, who went missing from Harrisburg in September 2019.

From Montana: the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes are creating a tribal community response plan for missing Native American people.

From New Mexico: This article states the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Task Force, which was formed a year ago to address the problem of violence against Native American women, has made a “dogged but incomplete effort” in the face of the pandemic and incomplete data. The entire 64-page report is here.

From Texas: there’s an article about Rusty Arnold’s search for his sister Mary Rachel Trlica and her friends, Lisa “Renee” Wilson and Julie Ann Moseley, who all disappeared under strange circumstances from Fort Worth in 1974.

From British Columbia, Canada: They’re still looking for Randolph Quilt, a Xeni Gwet’in First Nation man who disappeared from Williams Lake on September 26. He wasn’t reported missing till November 29.

From Germany/the UK: two-year-old Emmanuel Biendarra, who was abducted from the UK by his mother in 2019, has been found safe in Germany and returned to Britain, where his searching father lives.

From Nigeria: the 344 abducted Nigerian boys mentioned in the last article dump have been freed. It turns out they were taken not by Boko Haram, but by bandits pretending to be Boko Haram.

From Singapore: A suspect, Ahmad Danial Mohamed Rafa’ee, has been charged with murder in the disappeared of Felicia Teo, a fine arts student who went missing in 2007. Teo’s body has never been found. A suspected accomplice in the murder, Ragil Putra Setia Sukmarahjana, has been named also, but the police haven’t located him yet; he is no longer in Singapore. This article has more info on the case.

From Taiwan: they’ve found a woman, identified only as Hsieh, who went missing from Changhua County twelve years ago when she was only eleven years old. She was apparently abducted by her non-custodial mother and turned up in Kaohsiung in an “undernourished state” weighing only 36 kilograms, or 79 pounds. To keep Hsieh from being found, her mom had confined her to their apartment and not let her go to school or to the hospital. When she was reunited with her father and brother, she no longer recognized them, and she “appeared to be suffering from social behavioral disorders.” No wonder, after being imprisoned in an apartment for over half her life. Such an awful story.

MP of the week: Clinton Prater

This week’s featured missing person is Clinton Javon Prater, a 28-year-old man who disappeared from Natchez, Mississippi in early January 2008. The date of disappearance is given as January 10, which is the date it was reported; however, by then no one had seen him in “more than a week.”

He lived in a boarding house. When he went missing he took nothing with him, except for the medication he took for his mental illness. What the drugs were, and what his mental illness was, I don’t know.

Prater’s loved ones described him as a very quiet person with few friends, and said he would be easy to take advantage of. There’s been no sign of him in over twelve years.

MP of the week: David Cook

This week’s featured missing person is David Clem Cook, a 55-year-old cattle rancher who disappeared from Amsterdam, Missouri. He had a second job at a power plant and left the power plant at 10:30 p.m. on November 18, 2008.

One of his ranch hands supposedly met with him the next morning and they checked on some cattle before parting ways, but the police are saying the ranch hand isn’t “wholly reliable” so his official date of disappearance is November 18, not November 19.

He’d be 67 today, if still alive. I doubt he is.

Native American Heritage Month: Darian Nevayaktewa

In honor of Native American Heritage Month I’m featuring a Native American missing person for every day in the month of November. Today’s missing person is Darian Rae Nevayaktewa, a 19-year-old man of Hopi Pueblo heritage who disappeared from Kykotsmovi, Arizona on June 19, 2008.

Wikipedia says Kykotsmovi Village, also called K-Town, is the seat of government for the Hopi tribe on their reservation, which covers 1.5 million acres across three mesas and two counties.

Unfortunately I don’t have any more information on this case.

MP of the week: William Chapman

This week’s featured missing person is William Ray Chapman, who disappeared from Wichita, Kansas on December 8, 2008. He was 24 years old.

William would definitely stand out in the crowd: openly gay, he sometimes wore makeup and wigs and went by the name “Vanity Vuitton.” (I’m thinking he went out in drag, though that’s not entirely clear.) He enjoyed going to LGBT clubs, video blogging, and making music. Some of the photos of him show him with his hair dyed bright red.

There is little information on Chapman’s disappearance, though one inevitably wonders about a hate crime; Kansas isn’t the most gay-friendly place in the world. He would be about 35 today, if he’s still alive.

Yes, I know Larry Murillo has been located

Just about everyone has been texting, messaging and emailing me about the sad recovery of Larry Ely Murillo. His body turned up behind the coolers in the supermarket he used to work in. The business has been closed for years and a contractor was engaged in removing the coolers and shelving units when they found Murillo’s partially mummified remains in the eighteen-inch gap between the cooler and the wall.

Murillo was apparently having a psychotic break at the time of his disappearance. The day before, he had been prescribed an antidepressant, but his mental condition just deteriorated and he was paranoid and hearing voices. He ran out into the snow, coatless and barefoot, and vanished. Until now.

Per MANY the news articles about the finding, apparently workers at the supermarket would sometimes hide on top of the coolers when they wanted to take a break without the boss knowing. My guess is that Murillo, in his paranoia, went dashing for the familiar hiding space, only to slip into the space behind the units. The noise from the compressors would have drowned out his cries for help. And so he died a slow, horrible death.

The case reminds me of the tragic death of Joshua Maddux, whose corpse was found inside a chimney in a remote cabin in Colorado in 2015, seven years after he vanished. There was (and is still) talk of murder, but the most plausible theory is that he was trying to break into the cabin via the chimney and got stuck.

I am, not, of course, a psychiatrist or psychopharmacologist, but I don’t think the antidepressant was responsible for the mental breakdown leading up to Murillo’s death. He had been showing mental illness symptoms before taking the drug, and that’s why it was prescribed for him. And he had only been prescribed the drug the day before his disappearance.

Deaths like Larry Murillo’s remind me of just how lucky I am. As most of you readers know, I’ve got bipolar disorder. I’ve had psychotic breaks before. And one time, a common prescription painkiller I’d innocently taken interacted with one of my psychiatric meds and threw a party in my brain, resulting in very bad psychotic symptoms. This was not technically psychosis but delirium; however at the time everyone thought it was psychosis.

Anyway, that time I was hallucinating, delusional, and kept trying to leave the house at night in early March wearing only a shirt and underpants. The hospital refused to admit me, and the police wouldn’t help either, so Michael called his parents and they came over and stayed up with me all night to make sure I didn’t leave the house or do anything to harm myself.

If it weren’t for Michael and his parents, I might have died that night. I was lucky. Sadly, Larry Murillo wasn’t.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month: Aaron Tapasoa

In honor of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, I am profiling one Asian or Pacific Islander MP for every day of the month of May. Today’s case is Aaron Tapasoa, a seventeen-year-old boy who disappeared from Miami, Florida on October 17, 2008.

Most agencies classify Aaron as Caucasian, but I made a judgement call and I believe he’s much more likely to be of Pacific Islander descent, for the following reasons:

  1. His appearance
  2. The fact that he “may have traveled to Samoa”
  3. Most importantly, the surname Tapasoa is almost entirely unique to Aaron himself, but the surname Tapusoa (a slight respelling) comes from the Pacific Islands.

If I’m wrong I’ll eat my words.

Getting back to Aaron, it says he associated with the homeless population and spent a lot of time on the beach. He’s classified as a runaway. Wherever he is, I hope he’s alive and well.

Native American Heritage Month: Wilson Happy

In honor of Native American Heritage Month I’m featuring a Native American missing person for every day in the month of November. Today’s missing person is Wilson Happy, a 68-year-old Navajo man who disappeared from Farmington, New Mexico on June 4, 2008. Unfortunately the only photo I have of him is from the 1960s and is, I think, a high school graduation photo; he’s wearing a mortarboard in it.

From the circumstances of his disappearance, it looks like he may have been robbed and murdered. He withdrew $2k from the bank and was last seen sitting in a parked car (he didn’t own a car btw) looking really nervous and as if he expected someone to be coming.

MP of the week: Tamika Howard

This week’s featured missing person is Tamika Howard, a 37-year-old who disappeared from Newark, New Jersey on May 25, 2008. She had a high-risk lifestyle, with a drug problem, an arrest record and a history of prostitution. Perhaps because of this, her mom didn’t report her missing for three months.

It’s possible Tamika simply moved on, as there were reported sightings of her plying her trade at Penn Station in New York City after her disappearance. But I wonder if she’s still alive; it seems unlikely that someone with her history could have avoided law enforcement attention for over a decade.