This week’s featured missing person is Michelle Wells, a 13-year-old girl who disappeared from Detroit, Michigan in 1982.
And… that’s it. That’s all I have for this case. I don’t even have an exact date of disappearance, which is very sad, especially given as Michelle was a child.
I also only have one poor quality photo of her, and not much in the way of a physical description: of Native American and white descent, with red hair — though it doesn’t look red in the picture. No height and weight, no eye color.
If she’s still alive, Michelle would be about 53 years old today. It’s cases like this that deserve attention most of all, and that’s why I picked her for my missing person of the week.
Facebook didn’t like a meme I posted — despite the fact that it’s elsewhere on Facebook — and gave me 30 days in jail. But then they changed their minds and decided the meme is okay after all, but forgot to remove my 30-day sentence. Shrug. It is what it is. Facebook is broken.
- The biological parents of Classic and Cincere Pettus, later known as Orson and Orrin West, have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the state of California, alleging the state wrongfully removed the Pettus boys from a safe home and placed them with the people who have since been charged with their murders.
- There’s a new podcast about the disappearance of Joshua Cheney Guimond, a St. John’s University student who disappeared from the university’s Collegeville, Minnesota campus in 2002.
In New Hampshire:
- They’re still looking for Harmony Montgomery, and her father Adam’s lawyers have asked for police body cam footage of his arrest. Adam is charged with abusing Harmony prior to her disappearance, and with failure to report her missing. A little over a week ago the police searched Harmony’s old apartment and removed items, including a refrigerator. My guess would be they’re checking anything large enough to conceal a five-year-old child’s body.
In New York:
- On this coming Saturday, the New York City Medical Examiner is holding an event to publicize missing persons in NYC. At the event, the ME’s office will accept “will accept any voluntarily shared information, like photos and DNA samples to help identify missing people.”
In South Carolina:
- They interviewed the lead investigator in Shelton John Sanders‘s disappearance and presumed murder, asking him why they were unable to get convictions in that case. The investigator still thinks the suspect in guilty.
- They have identified remains found at a recycling plant as Duncan Gordon, a missing man. He was last seen sitting on top of a shredding machine, and “a substance that looked like ground up flesh” was later found in that machine. Sounds awful; I hope it was quick. I’m predicting Gordon’s family files a lawsuit and OSHA hands out fines for this.
In Washington state:
- Othram has identified two more unidentified bodies: they are Blaine Has Tricks, who disappeared in 1977, and Alice Lou Williams, who disappeared in 1981. I know with Alice they got some help from the Charley Project; I know because the guy who owns Othram told me so.
- They’re still looking for Vernon George Martin, who disappeared in 2009 after a fire at the airport hangar he co-owned. He could be missing or he could be on the run, as he’s wanted for sex offenses.
In New Zealand:
In the UK:
- The father of Claudia Lawrence, who disappeared in 2009, died in February, and in his will he left £10,000 to a charity for missing persons.
- They found Michael Anthony Lynch, a man who had been missing for 20 years. It appears he drove his car into Lough Erne, near Corradillar Quay, in Northern Ireland.
I’ve been pretty sure Olisa Williams‘s dad killed her for a decade and a half now. Like, since before the Charley Project was ever even a thing. I never expected the case to actually get solved, though.
Well, 39 years after the fact, Isiah Williams has finally been charged with one count of open murder. “Open murder” doesn’t mean he committed the crime in public or anything. It just means they aren’t picking a specific degree of murder, like first- or second-degree murder.
The Michigan Attorney General did a press conference about the case and another, unrelated case, an hour ago, but there doesn’t seem to be a lot that’s publicly available about the case against Isiah. It does say Olisa’s body has not been recovered. I’m not sure there’d be anything left of the poor baby by this point. (The comments at the bottom of the press conference link aren’t about Olisa’s case but about the other one being discussed. Plus some bonus homophobia thrown in.)
I hope the case processes through the system quickly. Isiah is not getting any younger.
I had written in May about how a suspected serial killer had “links” to Ashley Marie Parlier, who disappeared from Battle Creek, Michigan in 2005. Well, I guess these were more than just links, because the suspect, Harold Haulman, will be charged with Ashley’s murder. He was earlier charged with murder in the 2018 disappearance of Tianna Ann Phillips and the 2020 death of Erica Shultz.
I’m glad that happened. Murder-without-a-body cases are becoming increasingly common, and I hope this continues.
One case I’d love to see charges filed in would be the disappearance of Amiah Robertson. I really don’t understand why that hasn’t happened. I mean, a man left with a baby — not even HIS baby — and came back without her and without any credibly explanation as to her whereabouts, and nobody has been charged in that case. It’s been over two years. The baby was eight months old; it’s not taking care of itself. It was a frustrating case to write up because so much of the available info was contradictory. The only thing I’m sure of is that no one in that child’s life did right by her.
This week’s featured missing person is Christopher Alan Temple, a 17-year-old high school senior who disappeared while camping with four friends in a campground in the woods in Bath Township, Michigan on April 22, 1990. His friends said he just walked away from the campsite in the night and never returned.
The Charley Project says the only sign ever located was one of his shoes, found about 300 yards from the campsite over a year after his disappearance. However, the Case Remains site says Christopher’s other shoe was found nearby a few weeks after the first, along with “handfuls of long, strawberry blond hair, enough to fill two 8 x 10 envelopes.” It wasn’t Christopher’s hair, which was brown.
The police initially thought it might be a runaway case, or just ran into some misadventure in the swampy woods surrounding the campsite. But it’s come out that Christopher sold weed and sometimes shorted customers, so there’s a theory that an unhappy customer went after him.
There hasn’t been much about this in the news since it happened, and it’s been over 30 years now. Christopher’s father is deceased; I’m not sure about other family members. I’m sure they’d like to know what happened to him, or at least where he is.
This week’s featured missing person is Kristian Dejuan Justice, age 7 months, who disappeared with his six-year-old half-sister, Kaylah Neveah Hunter, from Detroit, Michigan on May 24, 2014.
Kristian’s father is Erin Maurice Justice. (Kaylah has a different father.) Erin had been married to the children’s mother, Alicia Marie Fox, for only four months when the couple separated and Alicia moved out with both kids. June 6, nearly two weeks after the children were last seen, Kaylah missed her kindergarten graduation ceremony and their family reported Alicia, Kaylah and Kristian missing. On June 9, Alicia’s body was found in the basement of a vacant home in Detroit.
Erin was subsequently arrested in Atlanta and charged with murder in Alicia’s case. He had left town on May 29. Although Erin pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 45 to 80 years, he never revealed what happened to the children.
Authorities can only hope that Kristian and Kaylah are still alive. There has been no indication of their whereabouts since 2014.
In December last year, Harold Haulman was charged with the murder of a 26-year-old woman. Well, he’s been charged with a second homicide in the same county, the murder of Tianna Phillips. Tianna disappeared from Berwick, Pennsylvania on June 13, 2018. (The article says July 13 but I think that’s wrong. NamUs says June.)
Tianna had a boyfriend, but was apparently also seeing Haulman, who was married. Haulman has confessed to the homicide, and his wife is apparently also a major witness against him. She said that after Tianna’s boyfriend called Haulman’s house to say he knew she was seeing him, Haulman got angry and threatened to kill either Tianna or the boyfriend. He later told his wife he had killed Tianna, and when she didn’t believe him he showed her photos of a woman’s dead body. From this article:
Haulman’s wife told police that several months after the crime had occurred, she went with him back to the site. She said he wanted to collect some of the evidence there. He took with him, he told police, black trash bags that he then filled with clothing and some of Phillips’ body parts. He stashed them in these dumpsters behind the AMC Theaters in Scott Township.
When questioned by police about Phillips’ disappearance, Haulman said he never picked her up that night.
Haulman was charged in December of 2020 for the murder of Erica Shultz. Her body was discovered in the same location where Haulman told police he killed Phillips.
So that’s happened. And according to this article, that may not be all: Haulman has “links” to Ashley Marie Parlier, a 21-year-old mentally disabled and pregnant woman who disappeared from Battle Creek, Michigan in 2005. I wonder if he was the father of her child and/or if they met on a dating app (or site? did apps exist in 2005?), which is where Haulman met both Phillips and his other victim, Erica Schultz.
So Anna Young died a few days ago at the age of 79, having served just 33 days of a life sentence for second-degree murder and manslaughter.
Anna pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of Emon Harper, aka Moses Young, a toddler who was beaten and starved to death in 1988 or 1989. His body was never found. The manslaughter conviction was for the death of Katonya Jackson, a two-year-old who died after being beaten, tortured and denied her epilepsy medication. (For some reason her death had initially been ruled as natural.)
Anna is also connected to two unsolved disappearances: that of two-year-old Marcos Antonio Cruz, whom she allegedly had abandoned at a church in Puerto Rico in 1992, and that of her six-year-old stepdaughter Catherine Barbara Davidson, who was last seen in 1973. Per one of Catherine’s siblings, she didn’t actually vanish while on a family outing to a state park in Michigan but had in fact been bound, gagged and placed in a closet where she died.
Pretty awful stuff.
I wonder if Marcos is still alive out there, or if he was ever abandoned in the first place and didn’t meet with the same awful death as Emon and Catherine and Katonya did.
We may never know.
Yesterday a child’s body was found in a camper near Garryowen on the Crow Reservation in Montana; it has been identified as Mildred Alexis “Millie” Old Crow, who disappeared sometime in 2019 or 2020. She was living with her guardians, her aunt Roseen Lincoln Old Crow and Roseen’s wife Veronica Dust, and was last seen with them in April 2019. No one’s exactly sure when she disappeared and nothing much has been released yet about her death. It seems likely she was murdered; little girls don’t just die for no reason.
Meanwhile in Florida, former cult leader Anna Young was sentenced to 30 years in prison for second-degree murder in the beating/starvation death of Emon David Harper, a toddler who disappeared sometime in 1988 and whose body was never found, and manslaughter in the death by neglect of Katonya Jackson, a two-year-old girl with epilepsy who died because Young withheld her medication. Both children and their families were members of Young’s cult.
This article talks about the plea deal and sentence Young accepted, but fails to mention that Young is tied to two other missing children: the 1973 (pre-cult) disappearance of Catherine Barbara Davidson, Young’s six-year-old stepdaughter, and the 1984 disappearance of two-year-old Marcos Antonio Cruz, another child whose family was involved in the cult. Marcos may have been abandoned in Puerto Rico by a cult member at Young’s orders. Catherine, however, was almost certainly murdered; one of Young’s other children reportedly saw her body in a closet before her disappearance was reported. It seems unlikely that Young will confess to her involvement in her stepdaughter’s case or help authorities recover the body; she’s got nothing to gain by it.