Johnny Gosch missing 34 years

At the request of Brittany K., I am writing about John David Gosch on the 34th anniversary of his disappearance.

The facts are these: Johnny was a twelve-year-old paperboy in West Des Moines, Iowa and on the morning of his disappearance, he slipped out of the house before 6:00 a.m. to do this route alone — something he wasn’t allowed to do; he was supposed to bring his dad with him. A witness reported seeing Johnny talking to guy in a car.

After that, no one really knows. Johnny kind of walked into a void. He was missed at seven o’clock when customers began to complain that they hadn’t gotten their papers. Johnny’s wagon and newspapers turned up on the sidewalk just two blocks from his house.

The internet is rife with theories and speculation as to what happened — the more so because Johnny’s mother, Noreen Gosch, claims her son secretly visited her in 1997 and told her he had been abducted by a pedophile ring.

Eugene Wade Martin, a 13-year-old paperboy from Des Moines, also disappeared while on his route, less than two years after Johnny did, and there are a lot of theories that the two cases are connected somehow. And I should note that Marc James-Warren Allen disappeared from Des Moines, less than two years after Eugene Martin, but I don’t know much about his case. He wasn’t a paperboy.

With the latest news about Jacob Wetterling’s remains being found, some people have suggested Danny Heinrich (the prime suspect in Jacob’s case) should be looked at in the Des Moines disappearances as well. I have no idea whether the police have looked into this or not. But I do want to point out that Des Moines is a four-and-a-half-hour drive from St. Joseph, Minnesota, the town where Jacob was taken.

(If you guys are wondering why I haven’t resolved his case yet, it’s because according to my user stats, everyone is looking at right now. I’ll give it another day or so before I pull him.)

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Jacob Wetterling’s body found

Well, it’s hit the news like lightning today: it’s not officially confirmed yet with DNA, but yeah, Jacob Erwin Wetterling is coming home at last. The prime suspect in his case has lead the cops to human remains in an unspecified location.

I never had much hope that Jacob was alive, especially after all the crap about Daniel Heinrich came out, but this announcement still makes me feel pretty sick. Thinking about what that poor little boy went through before his death. And his family, what they’ve been through in the nearly 30 years since.

You just know that Jacob’s brother and the other boy that was with them must have blamed themselves for years, and maybe still do. Even though there was nothing they could have done, even though this was a grown man with a gun and they were terrified children. People always blame themselves in situation like this. It’s easier to say “This has to be my fault somehow” than face up to the cold hard truth that the world is a cold, ruthless, capricious place and everything you know and love can be taken from you forever in a random instant.

Jacob’s mom, Patty, texted the media this simple statement: “All I can confirm is that Jacob has been found and our hearts are broken. I am not responding to any media yet as have no words.”

Per the same article as Patty’s statement, Daniel Heinrich’s brother has said he feels so sorry for the Wetterlings and is glad they found their son at last. The family members of such people are usually-forgotten-about secondary victims in cases like this. Plenty of perfectly decent people have relatives who are monsters — believe me, I know — and I always try to remember the families of those monsters in my thoughts.

And I remember Jacob. The little boy who loved sports and video games and making models from kits. R.I.P.

False leads

As I’ve stated so many times before, I view the Charley Project as a place to share the story of a person’s disappearance: before, during, and after. That includes talking about the false leads that inevitably crop up during an investigation.

The Beverly Potts casefile, for example, details a number of leads that went nowhere, including a woman who wrote a letter that said she’d caught her husband disposing of Beverly’s body and left it in her house. It turned out, as I recall, that her husband was horribly abusive and she thought he would kill her, so she left the letter as a kind of attempt to frame him for child-murder from beyond the grave, assuming he actually did kill her.

As many of you know, there have been exciting new developments in the Jacob Wetterling case, and I dutifully updated his casefile. The details of disappearance includes an aside that Jacob’s father is an adherent of the Baha’i religion, a faith which not many Americans are familiar with, and there were rumors among the locals that Jacob’s dad’s religion had something to do with his son’s abduction.

A person posted a message on the Charley Project’s Facebook account saying they’d never read about Baha’i in relation to Jacob anywhere, and suggesting it be removed.

Well, the thing was, I hadn’t read about it either. The information about Jacob’s father’s religion and the subsequent rumor mill had been added to the casefile by Jennifer Marra back when she was running the MPCCN. So I checked with Newslibrary, a major source of old news articles, and found a St. Paul Pioneer Press article that referenced it. So at least I could confirm the accuracy of the information. (Not that I ever doubted it in the first place; Jenni cared as much about accuracy as I do.)

My question to you guys, though, is: where do we draw the line? At what point does a false lead or ruled-out potential suspect or local rumor become irrelevant, and perhaps even detrimental to the story?

Honestly, although I haven’t removed the info, I’m not sure I would have put the Baha’i thing into Jacob’s casefile if I myself had written it from scratch. There’s been news lately about Roger Day, an interview with his sister who mentions a “pedophile” who lived nearby and whose home was searched. They found bones that turned out to be not human. Yesterday I updated his case with more info, but didn’t include the bit about the neighborhood pedophile since there seemed to be no evidence, beyond his sister’s speculation, that Roger had any particular interaction with the man.

Where do we draw the line?

Alas, no new leads in Jacob Wetterling case

This past summer there was a lot of activity in the Jacob Wetterling kidnapping case. He was eleven years old when he was abducted at gunpoint by a masked man in 1989, and there’s been no trace of him since. The cops were searching a local property pretty extensively, where a “person of interest” had lived. Everyone hoped for a break in the case.

But it was not to be. This article quotes the police basically saying their search found zilch, nothing, nada. As to whether the person of interest — an elementary school music teacher — is off the hook, no word. Of course he maintains his innocence.

Possible break in Jacob Wetterling case

Eleven-year-old Jacob Wetterling was abducted at gunpoint by a masked man near his St. Joseph, Minnesota home over twenty years ago. The case got a lot of press attention at the time and since, but to all appearances had been gathering dust over the last several years. Now, it looks like there’s a break.

The police are swarming around a farm near Jacob’s home, having obtained a search warrant in his case. Very little information is available, as the police are not disclosing anything, but they seem to be removing furniture and barrels from the property. This article says a reporter called the residence but the woman who answered refused to comment. There’s an aerial photo of the search site.

I am not going to rejoice yet; I have seen too many bursts of activity on cold cases lead to nothing. But this search cannot be anything other than good. It shows that the police are still working on Jacob’s case and that they had enough evidence to get a warrant against someone. Even if they don’t find Jacob or the person who took him, at least they might be able to rule out some suspects and/or theories.

So I send virtual hugs to the Wetterling family and wait.

Jacob Wetterling missing 20 years

Today is the twentieth anniversary of the abduction of eleven-year-old Jacob Wetterling. He was kidnapped at gunpoint by a strange man in front of his brother and a friend, and never seen again. The police don’t seem to have any idea what became of him or who took him, though he is one of the most famous missing children in the country.

Of course there’s a slew of anniversary articles:
Minneapolis Star-Tribune (this is a nice one, focusing on how the abduction affected Jacob’s best friend who saw the whole thing)
Minnesota Public Radio
St. Cloud Times
St. Cloud Times again
USA Today
ABC News
Fox 9 News

Jacob’s abduction reminds me of a lot of cases, namely Jaycee Dugard, Johnny Gosch and Eugene Martin, and the Groene family murders and the abductions of Dylan and Shasta Groene. (I wonder if anyone looked at Joseph Duncan as a suspect in Jacob’s kidnapping? Just a thought.) Whoever kidnapped Jacob was incredibly brazen and brutal. My guess is that the abductor had committed other crimes before — not kidnapping but perhaps assaults, burglaries, maybe some sex crimes. You just don’t wake up one morning and decide to stalk and abduct a child at gunpoint in full view of two witnesses.

Is Jacob still alive? Who knows?

Calling all loons

I just got an email from some nut who thinks he knows exactly how Jacob Wetterling‘s abduction happened by reading Jacob’s “Torah matrix,” whatever that means. It’s worth quoting at length:

In the Torah matrix which is Jacob Wetterling, October,1989, and evening interlock between the names of Jacob and Wetterling. Setting midway and top between names is the word ambush, the word missing is centered between the 2 names. The words abomination, plunder, and corpse all begin at the same place which happens to be the one instance where God’s name shares a letter with a second listing of God’s name. Jacob was not abducted to be force fed pork or remarry a former wife – all spellings of this abomination are related to homosexual things. The word boy intersects the word child which in turn intersects the word Wetterling showing we are speaking of a child named Jacob. The word face-mask is also present and horizontal to between the two names of Jacob.

The word motive is present below the names of Jacob favoring Jacob rather than Wetterling – it is 4 letters. The word coitus is also 4 letters and are on the same line offset to the next letter running the same direction and length. Overlapping those two words is the word craved. (motive=craved coitus). On the right side of the matrix an extremely tight grouping of words are fag, defile, defiling, expert. Pedophile with previous history of abduction/molesting boy(s) (fag/expert) – and the defile words. Intersecting this is the onboard matrix translator’s translated name of perp1.

Other factual words such as captive are present (led away becomes immediately captive), pronouns for the abductor such as whodoneit and examiner, and some others.

Perp2’s name is as perfect a transliteration as I am capable of making. It parallels Jacob running the opposite direction and right next to it – 1skip.

The word crime rests centered atop of the word Jacob and the word four is right in the immediate vicinity.

I do not have the math disciplines to exact the odds of occurrence of all these hits – my simple method had a denominator consisting > 80 zeroes. However just the two names of Jacob yield millions to one odds via the onboard odds estimator – which only goes to millions to one.

There is one thing that is known by the remaining victims, their parents and the police that was leaked out, then disavowed by one of the parents. Crime scene info seems to indicate that that really did take place and it just happens to be a fetish of perp1. The rumor was that the boys were fondled. (lay face down while trying to pick a victim? – disavowment was they were “turned over by the leg”). The matrix has the word ambusher right of the two names of Jacob. The word examine begins at the second letter of ambusher and runs to the right, the word testicles begins at the third letter of ambusher and runs to the left thru Wetterling over to Jacob (examine testicles)(or was it the other way around – I forgot). If this one thing could be truthfully forwarded and fondle was a truism – major point to believability that the matrix is true and complete.

Perp1, 2, and 3 are known pedophiles of boys – perp4 a homosexual but unknown if he too is a pedophile. Perp2 served time shortly after Jacob’s abduction for molesting a boy 15 miles from there.

The Jacob matrix fits the abduction and the theory perps excellently along with fitting the crime scene information better than any single abductor scenario does.

FINALLY: I just discovered this year that the word return or returned also begins at the intersection of god’s 2 names and is 2skip overlaying the 1skip word corpse. The year 2010 is present passing thru the word Jacob. 2010 begins late September 2009 (Hebrew calendar). Several other years are present (2000, 2010, 2016) but perhaps the 2010 passing thru Jacob means his remains will be recovered sometime in Hebrew year 2010.

Now that someone else has this info prior to any further becoming known – when it becomes known, the matrix becomes fact and the thousands of hours I put into finding this was not in vain. God knows everything and He let us know if you are willing to seek it out.

Thousands of hours? Wow.