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How Amateur Sleuths Are Solving America’s Coldest Cases

Mary Roach meets C.S.I. in this “lively study that’s part whodunit, part sociological study…The result is eminently entertaining and will be devoured by armchair detectives” (Publishers Weekly).

Currently, upwards of forty thousand people in America are dead and unaccounted for. These murder, suicide, and accident victims, separated from their names, are being adopted by the bizarre online world of amateur sleuths. It’s DIY CSI, solving cold cases from the comfort of your living room…

In an “absorbing look at a very odd corner of our world” (The Seattle Times), The Skeleton Crew: How Amateur Sleuths Are Solving America’s Coldest Cases provides an entree into the gritty and tumultuous world of Sherlock Holmes–wannabes who race to beat out law enforcement—and one another—at matching missing persons with unidentified remains. These web sleuths pore over facial reconstructions (a sort of Facebook for the dead) and other online clues as they vie to solve cold cases and tally up personal scorecards of dead bodies.

There is “no better guide for navigating this multifaceted world than Deborah Halber’s book” (Psychology Today), and The Skeleton Crew probes the macabre underside of the Internet and how even the most ordinary citizen with a laptop and a knack for puzzles can reinvent herself as a web sleuth. “Engaging and artful” (Los Angeles Times Review of Books), this witty and insightful look at the fleeting nature of identity is “brilliant” (The Wall Street Journal).

A male perspective

In recognition of January being Human Trafficking Awareness Month, L.A.S.T. Watch (Labor and Sex Trafficking), a watchdog group based in Marshalltown, hosted guest speakers at its most recent meeting at. St. Henry’s Parish Center, who outlined the difficulties male/male identify victims face.

“Part of the research suggests that almost half of all victims are male or hold masculine identities,” said Robert Dennis, Jr., who serves as a male outreach advocate prevention specialist at ACCESS (Assault Care Center Extending Shelter Support). “Male victims are less likely to be referred to available services by the general public and by law enforcement. There’s a stigma attached, especially for sexual trafficking.”

Gender stereotypes about masculinity can create barriers in seeking help, and how and why males get trapped in trafficking presents complex questions.

“Men face a stigma about not being strong enough to leave their trafficker, standing up for themselves, etc,” Dennis

Read more at: http://www.timesrepublican.com/news/todays-news/2018/01/a-male-perspective/

Man, 27, reported missing from Rogers Park – WLS

Police are searching for a 27-year-old man who went missing from the Rogers Park neighborhood on the North Side.

Michael Pfeiffer was last seen Thursday, January 18, in the 1300 block of West Greenleaf, according to an alert from Chicago Police.

Pfeiffer is described as a 5-foot-9, 160-pound white man with brown hair, brown eyes and a medium complexion, police said.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts should call Area North SVU at (312) 744-8266.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire – Copyright Chicago Sun-Times 2018.)

Read more at: http://abc7chicago.com/man-27-reported-missing-from-rogers-park/2975839/

Hunting for predators

They told their superior it would cost about $800 apiece for a private company to forensically search the drives for evidence. Wolfe, a 1993 graduate of Williamstown High School who had just gotten a home computer the year before and describes himself as “kind of a tech nerd,” thought he might be able to help with such cases in-house.

Then-Detective Bureau commander Jeff Dyke took him up on it.

“It was just a knee-jerk reaction that kind of turned into my calling, I guess,” Wolfe said.

Today, he’s a detective in the department, focusing on computer crime, particularly child pornography and solicitation. He’s also been deputized by the West Virginia State Police and the U.S. Marshal’s Service, serves on the West Virginia Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, is attached to the FBI’s Pittsburgh Violent Crimes Against Children task force and works cases for the United States District Attorney’s Office for

Read more at: http://www.mariettatimes.com/news/local-news/2018/01/hunting-for-predators/

Missing children and runaways may all be in great danger

ALEXANDRIA, VA. (WUSA9) – A desperate family searches for their missing teenager. Police say she’s a runaway and there’s been no sign of danger. But aren’t all runaways in danger?

That’s what Jholie Moussa’s friends and family argue.  

Friday, Jan. 13, at 5 PM, a neighbor saw Jholie Moussa standing on the corner of Sonia Court and Radford Avenue in Alexandria.  The neighbor tells WUSA9 that it looked like she was waiting to meet someone. She did not look like she was a runaway.  

RELATED: FBI joins search for missing Fairfax teen 

She had just told her twin sister that she would be right back. According to her sister, she said “I’ll be right back” several times. She never came home. She didn’t pack any bags. No change of clothes, no makeup, no hairbrush.  And thus, the teenager didn’t even pack

Read more at: http://www.wtsp.com/news/local/missing-children-and-runaways-may-all-be-in-great-danger/510026430

1 year ago, Baby Kamiyah’s mystery solved

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The early years certainly did not resemble how most people envision the benchmark moments in life.

She was born to a teen who became pregnant at the age of 15. Her father, a 22-year-old, was in jail on the day of her birth. A few months later Craig Aiken was returned to jail after police learned he was the man who impregnated an underage Shanara Mobley.

By now many people knew the name Kamiyah Mobley, the newborn abducted from a Jacksonville hospital in 1998. They worried about the infant and her young mother. They worried for the sake of future children and parents everywhere.

Where was she? How could it happen? Could it happen again?

Aiken and Mobley missed Baby Kamiyah’s first tooth. They weren’t there when she toddled on unsteady legs or when she came home from school swooning over a special crush.

Likewise they missed her graduation from Colleton

Read more at: http://www.blufftontoday.com/news/2018-01-21/1-year-ago-baby-kamiyahs-mystery-solved

Oregon State Police searching for missing person – KIVITV.com …

UPDATE: Ruby Pike was located safe by The Grant County Sheriff’s Office. No other information was immediately released.


Original Story:

Oregon State Police are investigating a missing person report regarding a Treasure Valley woman who was last known to be traveling from Portland, Oregon to the Boise-area.

52-year-old Ruby Pike of Star was reported missing by her husband. He last spoke to Ruby at approximately 4:13 p.m. Friday when she told him she would call when she arrived in Ontario. Ruby never called. Ruby was supposed to be home around 10:00 pm on Friday, January 19, 2018. 

Ruby’s cell phone was “pinged,” and the last location was near Highway 395b milepost 59, ten miles south of Ukiah. Ruby’s exact route is unknown. 

Ruby was last seen wearing jeans, an orange shirt, and clogs. Ruby is described as being 5’9″, 180lbs, brown hair, and hazel eyes.

Ruby is driving a 2008 white Toyota Tundra with a matching white Leer

Read more at: https://www.kivitv.com/news/oregon-state-police-searching-for-missing-person

Man Charged With Solving Missing Couple Case Breaks His Silence

Coachella Valley Region –

Sergeant Walter Mendez and his team of detectives have been working for months trying to find two people: 28-year-old Jonathan Darling Reynoso and 26-year-old Audrey Moran. 

“It has been tough for a variety of reasons the specifics as to investigating a missing cases are particularly difficult … the emotional side is very difficult,” says Mendez, who works for Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Unit. 

Difficult because behind the two images many of us have seen on their missing poster are families and friends who have been waiting for answers since May 10, 2017, the night they disappeared. 

“What does your gut tell you?” I ask. 

Mendez responds, “My gut, that I know Audrey and Jonathan did not leave their family, they were loved, they had so much to live for, I don’t work with assumptions, that’s not

Read more at: http://www.kmir.com/story/37308396/man-charged-with-solving-missing-couple-case-breaks-his-silence

Virginia Beach Crime Solvers holds 36th annual awards ceremony

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Virginia Beach Crime Solvers on Friday held its 36th annual awards ceremony that honored four community members making a difference for the city by combating crime.

Award winners were: 

Commonwealth’s Attorney Prosecutor Award for exhibiting a great deal of ability and tenacity in the
investigation of a serious crime: Virginia Beach Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Katharine Aicher

Clyde D. Hathaway Memorial Award for using a Crime Solvers tip to solve a serious crime: Virginia
Beach Detective Jason Atwood

Charles R. Wall School Resource Officer Award for making a difference in their school and in the lives of
their students: Virginia Beach Master Police Officer Jeff Wroblewski, SRO for Princess Anne High School

Henry McDonald Award for contributions to the Crime Solvers organization: Virginia Beach Crime
Solvers Board member and Secretary Kathy Hieatt

Along with the award ceremony was a luncheon that included the installation of the 2018 officers of the Virginia Beach Crime

Read more at: http://wtkr.com/2018/01/21/virginia-beach-crime-solvers-holds-36th-annual-awards-ceremony/