Cold Case Explorations

Researching Cold and Unsolved Cases from the US and Beyond

Chronological Cold or Unsolved Cases

Some of the cases I've written about.

I’ve put together a master list of the cases I’ve written about, sorted chronologically from the oldest to the most recent along with a brief description of the case.


  • Portlock, AK: A seaside town with several industries was abandoned in the late 1940s after a string of strange deaths and disappearances, with some attributing the deaths to the paranormal.


  • Rockefeller, Michael: Missing since November 19, 1961 from the Asmat cultural region, Papua New Guinea. In 1961, Michael Rockefeller disappeared from a capsized canoe in Dutch New Guinea and was never seen again. Experts to this day debate what became of him.


  • Bustamante, Dawn: Murdered on March 14, 1974 in Kailua, Oahu in HI. Two teenage girls were abducted, assaulted, and one was later murdered on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Almost 50 years on, the case remains unsolved.


  • Oakland County Child Killer: The first confirmed victim went missing on February 15, 1976 from Detroit, MI. In the late 70s, a number of children went missing or were found murdered in Oakland County, MI. Their cases remain unsolved to this day.
  • Gibson, Trenny Lynn: Missing since October 8, 1976 from Bryson City, NC. In 1976, a 16-year-old student went on a field trip with her horticulture class in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. She disappeared and has never been found.


  • Morgan, Charles “Chuck”: Found dead on June 18, 1977 south of Tucson, AZ. A businessman was kidnapped, released, and then disappeared only for his body to be discovered a few weeks later. Authorities ruled the death a suicide, but his family disagrees.


  • Fandel Children: Missing since September 4, 1978 from Sterling, AK. In 1978, two children (Scott and Amy Fandel) disappeared from their cabin in the Alaskan wilderness. They’ve never been seen or heard from again.


  • Five Men Aboard the Sarah Joe: Missing since February 11, 1979 from Hana, Maui in HI. In 1979, a group of five friends went on a fishing trip from Hana, Hawaii. Their boat vanished, and so did they.


  • Keddie Cabin Murders: Three found murdered on April 11, 1981 in Keddie, CA with a fourth found deceased on April 22, 1984 in Butte County. In April 1981, three people were violently murdered in Keddie, CA, and a 12-year-old girl was kidnapped from the home and subsequently murdered, too. Despite over 40 years and several prime suspects, the case remains unsolved.
  • Anderson, Cynthia: Missing since August 4, 1981 from Toledo, OH. A young woman had nightmares of being abducted and murdered - and then, it seems, she was. Forty years later, she’s never been found.
  • Sova, Kurt: Found deceased on October 28, 1981 in Newburgh Heights, OH. A 17-year-old went to a Halloween party and then was found dead five days later. Forty years on, no one knows what happened.



  • Martínez, Juan Pedro: Missing since June 25, 1986 from Somosierra, Spain. Juan was on a road trip with his family when the tanker truck his father was driving overturned, killing both of his parents instantly. Juan’s body wasn’t at the crash site and he was never seen again.
  • Prichard, Jane: Found murdered on September 20, 1986 in Smyrna, DE. A botany student was studying plants in Blackbird State Forest when she was shot in the back with a shotgun. Over 30 years later, the murder remains unsolved.


  • Bier, Theresa: Missing since June 1, 1987 from Fresno, CA. In 1987, a man took a teenager camping, then returned home without her and claimed that Bigfoot took her. The case remains unsolved.


  • Leach, Randy: Missing since April 16, 1988 from West Bonner Springs, KS. A 17-year-old goes to a bonfire party in rural Kansas and is never seen again. Over 30 years later, there are still no answers.
  • Tankleff, Arlene & Seymour: Found murdered on September 7, 1988 in Belle Terre, NY. A 17-year-old was wrongfully convicted and spent nearly two decades in prison. The murders remain unsolved and the real culprit is out there somewhere.


  • Bohun, Casey Rose: Disappeared August 6, 1989 from North Delta, British Columbia. A 3-year-old vanished from her North Delta home and has never been seen again. Over 30 years later, there are no answers.


  • Barreau, Rhianna: Disappeared October 7, 1992 from Morphett Vale, South Australia. A 12-year-old went out to purchase a Christmas card for a pen pal, then she vanished. 30 years later, she’s never been seen again.


  • Emery, Adam: Missing since November 10, 1993 from Newport, RI. After a road rage incident gone wrong, a man was convicted of murder. On the day he was convicted, he vanished, and hasn’t been seen since.


  • Von Emster, Michelle: Found deceased on April 15, 1994 in La Jolla, CA. In 1994, a woman’s shark-bitten body was found off the coast of San Diego. Authorities listed the cause of death as a shark attack, but shark experts disagree, and others suspect foul play was involved.


  • Hagerman, Amber: Went missing on January 13, 1996 and was found murdered on January 17, 1996. 9-year-old Amber Hagerman was abducted and murdered in Arlington, TX. Her case remains unsolved, but her legacy lives on.


  • McCormick, Ricky: Found dead on June 30, 1999 near West Alton, MO. In 1999, a man was found dead in a cornfield. His murder went unsolved, and then 12 years later, authorities revealed that the man had several cryptic notes in his pockets with codes that still haven’t been cracked.


  • Degree, Asha: Missing since February 14, 2000 from Shelby, NC. A young girl left her home in the middle of the night and hasn’t been seen since. Her family still holds onto hope that she’s out there somewhere.
  • Bish, Molly: Missing since June 27, 2000 from Warren, MA. A 16-year-old was dropped off at her job, then vanished. Her body was found several years later but her killer remains elusive over two decades later.
  • Pendergrast, Matthew: Missing since December 1, 2000 from Memphis, TN. A college student didn’t show up for class, and then his car and clothes were found in a different state. 20 years later, he’s never been found, and the case remains unsolved.


  • Fisher, Robert William: Last seen on April 10, 2001 in Scottsdale, AZ. A triple-murder suspect disappeared after the bodies of his wife and children were found in their burning home. He’s been on the run for over 20 years.
  • Perry, Branson: Missing since April 11, 2001 from Skidmore, MO. A 20-year-old went outside his home to put some jumper cables into his family’s shed. Then he was gone.
  • Wales, Thomas C.: Found murdered on October 11, 2001 in Seattle, WA. An Assistant US Attorney and anti-gun advocate was shot to death in his Seattle-area home. Authorities have their suspects, but no one has ever been charged with the crime.


  • Wade, Paula & Brandon: Disappeared from Valdosta, GA on October 12, 2002. A mother and son went missing in 2002 from their apartment complex and have never been found. Few clues were left behind, and to this day, the case remains unsolved.
  • Guimond, Joshua: Missing since November 9, 2002 from Collegeville, MN. A well-liked college student left a poker party in November 2002 and was never seen or heard from again. Two decades later, there are still few answers.


  • Entwistle, Daniel: Missing since May 3, 2003 from Great Yarmouth, United Kingdom. A 7-year-old was out playing in Great Yarmouth when he disappeared. His bike was found, he was not, and over 20 years later, there are still no answers.


  • Shaffer, Brian: Missing since April 1, 2006 from Columbus, OH. An OSU medical student walked in to a bar on April Fool’s Day and never was seen again. What happened to him?


  • Canada’s Severed Feet: Since 2007, 21 feet have been found washed ashore in the Pacific Northwest. Theories about why the feet washed ashore range from lost immigrants to aliens to a serial killer with a foot fetish. What’s the real story behind the washed-up feet?


  • Swanson, Brandon: Missing since May 13, 2008 from Canby, MN. After attending a friend’s party, Brandon left to drive home and ended up in a ditch. His car was found, he was not, and he’s never been seen since.
  • Sweet, Margaret: Found murdered on December 25, 2008 in Colorado Springs, CO. On Christmas Eve in 2008, a woman was shot to death. Many suspect her ex-boyfriend committed the crime, but no one has been arrested. The murder remains unsolved.


  • West Mesa Bone Collector: Victims started going missing in May 2003 and bodies were uncovered in February 2009 in West Mesa, NM. At least 11 women are believed to be the victims of this uncaught serial killer. Police have some strong suspects, but no arrests have ever been made in the case.
  • Brantley, Marsha: Missing since around May 2009 from Cleveland, TN. A woman vanished and wasn’t reported missing for months afterward. Her husband was twice charged with her murder, but the case remains unsolved.
  • Jamison Family: Missing since October 9, 2009 from Red Oak, OK and found deceased in 2013. A family went to go and view some property that they were thinking about purchasing, then disappeared. Their truck was later found, as were their remains years later, but questions still remain. Was this foul play, a tragic accident, or something else?


  • Horman, Kyron: Missing since June 4, 2010 from Portland, OR. In June 2010, 7-year-old Kyron was excited to show off his science fair project at Skyline Elementary. He disappeared from his school and hasn’t been seen since.


  • Pitzen, Timmothy: Missing since May 13, 2011 from the Sterling/Dixon/Rockfall area in IL. A mother took her 6-year-old son out of school, then committed suicide a few days later alone in a motel room. The son has never been found.
  • Parker, Michelle: Missing since November 17, 2011 from Orlando, FL. A 33-year-old mother dropped her twins off at their father’s home and then vanished. Her car and phone have been found, but she has not.


  • Unidentified Severed Head: Unidentified severed head discovered on December 12, 2014 in Economy, PA. In 2014, a boy walking through a wooded area in Pennsylvania found a severed head. Years later, we still don’t know who the head belonged to.


  • Pua, Daylenn “Moke”: Missing since February 27, 2015 from Waianae, Oahu in HI. In 2015, Pua went for a hike and never came back. Was this a tragic accident or did something more sinister happen?
  • Rogers, Crystal & Ballard, Tommy: Rogers went missing on July 3, 2015 from Bardstown, KY. Ballard was killed on November 19, 2016, also in Bardstown, KY. In 2015, a mother of five went missing and has never been found. In 2016, her father was shot dead. Neither case has been solved.
  • Smith, Stephen: Found deceased on July 8, 2015 in Hampton County, SC. A 19-year-old student was found dead along a country road. Was this a hit-and-run, as authorities originally suggested, or did something more nefarious happen?
  • McCabe, Henry: Went missing on September 6, 2015 and was found deceased November 2, 2015 in Mounds View, MN. Henry McCabe went out for a night of fun with friends, but he never returned home. Some horrifying voicemails were left from his cellphone to his family. Months later, his body was found, and many suspect foul play.


  • Bevers, Terri “Missy”: Found murdered on April 18, 2016 in Midlothian, TX. A mother of three was set to teach her 5 AM fitness class in a local church. When the students arrived, they found her beaten and bloodied body. The case remains unsolved, despite having video footage of the perpetrator.
  • Smart, Stacey: Missing since around October 15, 2016 from Lewiston, CA. In October 2016, Stacey Smart simply vanished. No one knows what happened to her. She hasn’t contacted anyone, nor have her remains been found. Her family suspects foul play.


  • Woods Jr., Terrence: Missing since October 5, 2018 from Orogrande, ID. An experienced film worker was on the set in a rural Idaho area when he suddenly ran off into the forest and hasn’t been seen since. His family suspects foul play may be involved, but searches have ceased and there are still no answers.
  • Guse, Karlie: Missing on October 13, 2018 from Chalfant, CA. In 2018, a 16-year-old attended a party, then returned home. She vanished from her family’s house and hasn’t been seen since. 


  • Barraza, Elizabeth “Liz”: Murdered on January 25, 2019 in Tomball, TX. A young woman was shot to death in her driveway and the whole incident was captured on a neighbor’s Ring doorbell camera. Despite this, the case remains unsolved.
  • Kaiwai, Jamie: Missing since October 19, 2019 from Tolaga Bay in Eastland, NZ. A 27-year-old mother went missing near Tolaga Bay in New Zealand. Her car was found with bloodied clothes inside, but authorities treated the disappearance as a suicide from the start. Her family believes foul play was involved.


  • Kildea, Amani: Found hanging in a public park on June 28, 2020 in Morristown, NJ. A 20-year-old was found hanging in New Jersey. Authorities ruled it a suicide, but some friends and family disagree.


  • Ledbetter, Kaitlyn: Missing since May 2, 2021 from Hilham, TN. A 25-year-old jumped out of her bedroom window, ran off into the woods, and has never been seen again.
  • Wells, Summer: Missing since June 15, 2021 from Rogersville, TN. On June 15, 2021, 5-year-old Summer Wells spent the day with her mother and grandmother. Then, she vanished from her home.
  • Robinson, Daniel: Missing since June 23, 2021 from Buckeye, AZ. A 24-year-old left from a jobsite and hasn’t been seen since. His car and possessions were found, but he has not, and his family suspects foul play.


  • Smith, Denisha Montgomery: Found dead on August 8, 2022 in Weisbaden, Germany. A 27-year-old mother of three died while on deployment in Germany. The Army was quick to call her death a suicide, but her family disagrees.