Flashback Friday: Martin Franzel

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Martin Franzel, missing since June 14, 1963 from Minneapolis, Minnesota. The elderly man went for his regular morning walk in the predawn hours and never returned. I have nothing else on him. I don’t know if he perhaps suffered from dementia and just wandered away, or what.

It’s been over fifty years since Martin Franzel disappeared. Whatever became of him, he is definitely dead now. He was born 129 years ago.

Select It Sunday: Georgia Ann Clock Smith

Selected by Kat. I was going through old blog entries from years ago and I found one from before Select It Sunday was even a thing, where Kat commented and asked me to run Georgia Ann Clock Smith as my MP of the week. I’ll do this instead.

Georgia is typical of a certain profile of MP on Charley: an elderly person with dementia who may have just wandered away. She was on a trip to her summer home, over 100 miles. Her car was never recovered. The most likely theory is that she got lost, either because her usual route was blocked or because of her Alzheimer’s or both, and got into a car accident.

A little help here?

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has this page with links to PDF posters of MPs. However, I can’t view them. Here is what I see when I click on one of the links:


I do not know why it won’t show me the “proper contents of the document.” But I was hoping that someone who could see the proper contents might email me screenshots of the posters so I can put them on Charley. I need Michial Annamitta, Tori Bess, Cindy Brown, Dawn Carlson, Martin Franzel, Harold Haynes, Timothy Leung, Timothy Newham and William Squire. I would really appreciate this!

EDIT: Several people stepped up to the plate. Thanks to each and every one of them. The cases are now on Charley.

Select It Sunday: Kevin Mahoney

Sorry about missing Flashback Friday; I was visiting my dad and didn’t get back till relatively late yesterday. Anyway, this week’s Select It Sunday case was chosen by Angie: Kevin Gerald Mahoney, missing from Fargo, North Dakota since October 2, 1993. He was 25. He left home to walk to his brother’s apartment south of Moorhead, Minnesota, but never arrived. Google Maps says Fargo and Moorhead are only 1.5 miles apart.

I don’t have much on Mr. Mahoney, other than that foul play is suspected in his disappearance. A search for recent news on his case (I haven’t updated his casefile since 2010) turned up nothing.

Flashback Friday: Roy Benn

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Roy George Benn, missing from the small town of Sauk Rapids, Minnesota since September 25, 1967. I haven’t updated his case in nine years and don’t have much on him, other than a good description of the car he was driving. The vehicle was never found.

I highly doubt Benn is still alive today, for the simple reason that he would be 106 years old. Whether something happened to him or he left on his own — complete with car and the large sum of money he was said to be carrying — is difficult to guess based on the information available to me.

Flashback Friday: Barbara Paciotti

Petite, pretty dark-haired Barbara Jean Paciotti is this week’s Flashback Friday. She was twenty and she’s been missing for nearly 45 years, since June 14, 1969, from the small town of Hibbing, Minnesota. Her sister and both her parents have died, but her brother, Greg, is still alive and hopes for a resolution in her case. He and her other loved ones held a memorial service for her in 2008.

Barbara’s then-boyfriend, Jeffrey Dolinich, is considered a suspect, in fact the only suspect, in her disappearance, and there are certainly some strange circumstances that point to him. But it’s been so long, and some of the physical evidence was destroyed before the police could get to it. Given Dolinich’s behavior after her disappearance, and given what physical evidence they did find in the course of the investigation, I think charges might have been issued today. But back in the 1960s they didn’t have such things as DNA testing, and it was much less common to charge a person with murder in absence of a body. In any case, now it’s too late; the suspect has died and whatever secrets he carried are beyond human reach.

Looking for new additional facts on Barbara (several days before this entry ran), I did find this article and this article, both from 2013. They mention Dolinich’s death, and the fact that the lead investigator in her case has retired and so it’s sitting inactive. Other than that there was nothing I didn’t already know.

At this point I think the best we can hope for is that Barbara’s body turns up. It’s not too late, never too late, for that. After all, Cheryl Miller and Pamella Jackson turned up recently after 43 years, almost as long as Barbara’s been among the missing.

In the unlikely chance she’s alive, she’d be 65 years old today.

Flashback Friday: Janet Kramer

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Janet Ann Kramer. She was thirteen and living in a group home for girls when she disappeared from Willmar, Minnesota. Presumed to have run away. The date of disappearance is given as January 1, 1971, but I wonder if that’s accurate. January 1 seems a strange date to run away on, especially in Minnesota, and that date is often used when the person disappeared at some unknown date in a particular year.

I Googled “Willmar Minnesota group home” and found a website for an organization that operates girls’ and boys’ group homes in the area, but their girls’ home isn’t old enough to be Janet’s. Presumably Janet’s group home has long since closed.

In any case, I have almost no information on her. A friend believes she looks a little like me. The resemblance is more obvious when you check out this photo of myself at Janet’s age.

Janet’s been missing for over forty years. If she is still alive — and I suppose there’s no evidence to indicate she’s not — she would be 56 years old today.

I don’t know how I managed to miss this

I’ve written about Susan Powell‘s husband and in-laws so many times that they have their own category on this blog. And here’s one more: over a month ago Josh Powell’s brother, Michael, committed suicide by jumping off the seven-story apartment building in Minnesota where he lived. This less than a week after the anniversary of Josh, Charlie and Braden Powell’s deaths.

So, a reckoning:

1. Susan Powell is missing and presumed dead.
2. Her husband Josh committed murder-suicide last year.
3. Josh killed their two young sons, Charlie and Braden.
4. Josh’s father Steve Powell is in prison for child porn.
5. And now Michael’s jumped off the roof.

And then there were three. The surviving siblings are Alina, John and Jennifer.

Josh had listed his brother Michael and his sisters Alina and John as the beneficiaries for his, Charlie’s and Braden’s life insurance policies, which totaled at least $1.5 million and possibly as much as $2 million. Michael was to get 93% of the money, Alina 4% and John 3%. (Jennifer is estranged from the rest of the family and got promised nothing.) Michael had been bickering with Susan’s parents, Chuck and Judy Cox, over the insurance money. Basically, they argued that since Josh murdered his two children and killed himself, he shouldn’t have the privilege of deciding who gets the resulting insurance payouts. They were also fighting over who should have control of Susan’s estate, which includes $1 million in life insurance. The insurance company refused to pay anybody until a judge decided who should get the money. This legal battle was still ongoing at the time of Michael’s death.

Michael was 30 years old when he died. How much he was a victim of events he could not control, and how much he contributed to all the problems, I don’t know. But in the Epic Rap Battles of History’s Sarah Palin vs. Lady Gaga vid, Lady Gaga says, “You are the sum of everything I despise / With the most dysfunctional family since the Jackson F*cking Five.” That kind of sums up my feelings about Josh Powell and the rest of that lot.