Pride Month: Niija Council

In honor of Pride Month I’m featuring a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer missing person every day for the month of June. Today’s case is Niija Navea Council, a 20-year-old mother who disappeared from Philadelphia in September 2013. According to her social media, she is bisexual.

I only added Niija to the Charley Project this spring and the circumstances of her disappearance are very unclear to me. Her file on my site gives the date of disappearance as September 1; this was the date provided by all official sources I could see.

However, as I blogged in April, there is something more to the story than “last seen on September 1” and I really don’t know what the heck is going on with this one.

I feel her Charley Project casefile is incomplete at best and probably misleading but I never know how to treat social media as a source, particularly when its info contradicts that given by law enforcement.

As ever, I invite and appreciate input and further digging from you, my fine readers, without whom this blog would serve no purpose.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month: Susan Cerritelli

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 Susan Maria Ann Cerritelli, a 26-year-old woman who disappeared from Long Pond, Pennsylvania on May 11, 1983.

She’s listed as Asian and her nickname is Chinese Sue, but I don’t know if she’s actually of Chinese descent. I think the photo of her is a high school yearbook picture, so it’s probably like ten years out of date.

Authorities believe Susan was murdered by her husband, Andrew, a violent criminal and generally a bad dude. According to one story, he dumped her remains in Centralia, Pennsylvania, an uninhabited hellscape that’s been on fire since the 1960s with no end in sight. If you can avoid getting poisoned by the coal gas fumes, it’s a very good place to put a body; the police say it’s too unsafe to search.

Andrew Cerritelli died in 2007 and took whatever secrets he had to his grave. While poor Susan remains among the missing.

Thinking aloud about this case

So a case I added yesterday, Niija Council, is a “few details” case, but I had plenty of photos, including pics of her tattoos, from Niija’s Facebook page. (She also put a photo of herself on a page called Team Bisexual. Maybe I could profile Niija for Pride Month in June.)

The thing is, Niija has posts on her Facebook from AFTER her official date of disappearance, September 1.

I don’t know whether September 1 was the date she was last physically seen by anyone, or if they just mean she was last seen sometime in September, or what. On September 11 she made four posts:

niijafacebook

Later in the month she changed her profile picture multiple times, the last time on September 23. The comments on her September 16 profile picture change indicate people were pretty worried about her:

niijafacebook2

So I dunno what was going on there. It’s a struggle to piece what exactly happened from what I’ve got to work with. I hope Niija is alive and well somewhere.

Incidentally, I wish I could read the words tattooed on her neck and chest. I posted pictures of them on her casefile but I can’t tell what they say. Here’s larger photos below (the neck picture is from before she added the stars and squiggles) if you want to help me out:

niijanecktattoo

niijachesttattoo

A bunch of no-body homicide updates

So I re-posted all the Corpus Delicti lists last night and today (it’s been forever I know) and I took the chance to go through Not Concluded/Unknown Outcomes again to find out some of those outcomes.

The result is fifteen updated cases.

  • Cynthia Linda Alonzo: Eric Mora pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, got eleven years.
  • Abigail Estrada: Ruben Torres pleaded guilty to murder, got eighteen years but could be out in ten.
  • Cari Lea Farver: Shanna Golyer was found guilty, got life without parole plus 18 to 20 years for an unrelated arson.
  • Jarrod Devlin Green: Brandon Wheeler’s charges were dropped for lack of evidence.
  • Alice Kristina Wehr Hummel: Bruce Hummel was tried and convicted of the murder a second time, but an appeals court overturned his second conviction and he cannot be retried.
  • Charles Edward “Mississippi” Johnson: David Lint pleaded no contest to criminal homicide, got seven to fifteen years.
  • Zachary Matthew Malinowski: No conclusion yet, but suspect Javon Gibbs (allegedly) murdered someone else while out on bail in Malinowski’s murder.
  • Bernadine M. Montgomery: Tracie Naffziger pleaded no contest to being an accessory second-degree murder after the fact. She will testify against David Mariotti, whose trial is supposed to be early next month.
  • Sara Jo Mowrey: After alleged misconduct by the prosecution, Michael Baker pleaded guilty to solicitation to commit murder and being an accessory after the fact to murder, and got three years instead of the life sentence he’d have gotten if convicted of the original charges.
  • Catherine E. Nelson and Charles Martin Russell: Brian Ferry’s trial was early this year. The jury couldn’t reach a verdict and there was a mistrial.
  • Heath Riley Reams: Amanda Sanders-Bolstad pleaded guilty to manslaughter and got 25 years, with 20 suspended, but the prosecution is trying to get her suspended sentence revoked because she moved without telling the police.
  • Bret R. Snow: More details have been released about the crime and two additional suspects have been charged. Alvaro Guajardo is charged with murder, and Cheryl Sutton with kidnapping, conspiracy to commit murder, and leading organized crime.
  • Aaron Lamar Turner: One suspect, Bryan Byrd pleaded guilty to third-degree murder and got 20 to 40 years. (Also found an article about how Bryan was an academic star in high school and seen as a really great kid who had risen above his poverty and single-parent childhood, then he ruined his life in one weekend.) The second suspect, LaQuanta Chapman, was convicted and sentenced to death, but the sentence was overturned four years later and he got life instead. A third suspect has been identified, but has never faced charges. I think it’s because Chapman isn’t saying boo and they only have Byrd’s testimony to put the man at the scene. Also, not-very-fun fact: Chapman shot one of his dogs dead and dismembered the body in his attempt to cover up Aaron’s murder.
  • Rebecca Ann Ware: Timothy Johnson pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and got nineteen years, with credit for three years’ time served.

More recommended reading

I’m still writing up this man’s casefile, but I wanted to share some articles about it.

This is another case of excellent small-town investigative reporting, detailing a VERY messed-up story (in all senses of the word) out of Pennsylvania, involving Thomas Hayden, a man who dropped out of sight in 2011 and wasn’t reported missing for six years.

As in the Chapin/McCullough case I talked about yesterday, it’s pretty clear what happened and who did it. Unlike in that case, though, it looks like justice is coming along here.

Presenting: Discovery of blood, hair in Foodsaver bag opens unsolved mystery of missing Dover Twp. man

MP of the week: Raymond Poland

This week’s featured missing person is Raymond Samuel Poland, a 35-year-old man who was last seen in Erie, Pennsylvania on August 22, 2001. Since he wasn’t reported missing for a year, I’m not sure how they fixed the date of his disappearance, but that’s what I’ve got.

Poland was an occasionally homeless alcoholic who had trouble keeping a job because of his problem. I think he may still be alive and just unaware that his family’s looking for him, or he may be a John Doe in some far-off part of the country.

Flashback Friday: Gloria Korzon

This week’s Flashback Friday case is Gloria Suzanne Korzon, who disappeared from Warrington, Pennsylvania on March 9, 1981. The case is a very sad but pretty typical example of domestic violence.

Due to her husband William’s attempt to cover up her absence, she wasn’t reported missing until July of that year. When Gloria’s family reported her disappearance to the police and they asked William about it, he lied and said she was visiting an aunt out of state.

Furthermore, the couple’s marriage had been pretty terrible. The police had been called to their home eight times, and Gloria left behind a list of times when William allegedly assaulted her; the list was three pages long.

William is, obviously, the prime suspect in his wife’s disappearance, but no charges have ever been filed in her case.