Tuesday, April 28, 2020

The Murder of Lorie Storie

Missing Ohio Woman Found Slain in Lake, Police Search for Killer ...

On February 21st, 2020, a group of fishermen called authorities in Harrison County, Ohio after they spotted the body of a woman floating face down in the Tappan Lake Dam. The deceased woman was later identified as 37 year-old Lorie Storie of Zanesville, Ohio. Lorie was not listed as a missing person at the time, however her family members told authorities that they had been trying to get in contact with her for about a week before her body was found.

An autopsy determined that Lorie's death was a homicide. She had been brutally beaten to death. It is believed that Lorie was murdered at a separate location, and that her body was disposed of in the dam after-the-fact. Investigators are working to locate a more specific crime scene. Additionally, investigators are actively searching for Lorie's killer. No suspects or persons of interest have been identified at this time.

If you have any information that could help solve Lorie's murder, please contact the Harrison County Sheriff’s office at 740-942-2197.
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UPDATE: 63 year-old Larry Smith has been arrested and charged with Lorie's murder. Larry is also a Zanesville local--and in addition to being charged with murder, he has also been charged with tampering with evidence. Investigators have not yet revealed a connection between Larry and Lorie, however the prosecutor stated that his arrest is "the result of weeks-long investigation involving multiple law enforcement offices and agencies, including the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department, Muskingum County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the FBI." More updates are expected.
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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

The Disappearance of Demakia Phinizee


Demakia Phinizee vanished at the age of 26 on October 12th, 2007. At the time of her disappearance, Demakia was had just become a veteran. She had recently completed five years in the U.S. Army, and had started working as a security guard at the Fillmore Center—an alternative school located in Tupelo, Mississippi. Demakia was seen dropping somebody off at the school before driving away in her red Pontiac Grand Am (pictured below). She never returned home to her three children and has never been seen or heard from again.


Later that evening, Demakia’s car was found parked at the Warfield Apartments on Jackson Street in Tupelo. Witnesses reportedly saw the vehicle entering the complex at a high speed rate. After it was parked, the witnesses saw an African-American male wearing a white t-shirt and blue jeans getting out of car’s driver seat before running behind the apartment building. Said male has never been identified.

Demakia remains missing today, and there has been very little information released about the investigation. Early on, it was revealed that police reportedly have no suspects or persons of interest in her case. Despite the suspicious incident with her car, Demakia’s case is not being investigated as a crime; but just as a missing persons case. However, Demakia’s family members do not believe she would voluntarily abandon her children or stay out of touch with her loved ones. Northeast Mississippi Crimestoppers has taken over the investigation into Demakia’s disapearance. If you have any information that could lead to her whereabouts, please contact them at 1-800-773-8477.
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UPDATE (April 2020): More details have recently been released about Demakia's disappearance.
Though this was not initially revealed to the public, Demakia's husband, Robert Delawrence "Tre" Phinizee has reportedly been a person of interest in the case since the beginning. When police questioned him about Demakia's disappearance, he told them that he last saw her around 6am on the day she vanished. He also told police that he suspected Demakia had "run off with a new boyfriend." However, investigators have not found any evidence to support this theory. Tre and Demakia were separated at the time she vanished, and she was seeing another man, but this man is not considered a person of interest.

The day after Demakia's disappearance, Tre took their children and moved out of Tupelo. He later remarried. In February 2020, he was arrested and charged with the attempted murder of his new wife. With Tre behind bars, investigators are hoping to once again question him and look into his involvement in Demakia's disappearance. 

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Saturday, April 18, 2020

List Series: Cases With Victim Impersonation

When a person seemingly vanishes without a trace, it is not uncommon for their loved ones to attempt to get ahold of them via phone, social media, etc. Communication from a missing person via phone or computer can be helpful for investigators as well, because they can trace phone pings/IP addresses to identify the location where messages were sent or calls were made. Unfortunately, there is always a possibility that the missing person's phone or social media accounts are being used by somebody other than the missing person. In fact, there are numerous cases in which a perpetrator has used a victim's phone or social media accounts to communicate with the victim's loved ones in attempt to throw off the investigation. Below is a list of 7 such cases, where a victim was impersonated by the person responsible (or believed to be responsible) for their disappearance.


7. The Disappearance and Presumed Murder of Candice Taylor
Mother in search of the rest of her daughter's body after legs found at ...
Candice Taylor vanished at the age of 21 in March 2017. She was reportedly last seen in the northeast side of Columbus, Ohio. Candice’s mother reported her missing on March 17th, 2017. However Candice’s mother stated that she continued to receive text messages from Candice’s phone up until June 2017. The first text message was sent shortly after Candice was reported missing. The message stated that Candice was pregnant and she was going to Cincinnati to “clear her head.” The next set of messages were sent during the months of April and May. During those months, Candice’s mother reportedly received messages from Candice’s phone, stating that she wanted “space for a month or two.” The last message Candice’s mother received was on June 24th, 2017—Candice’s 22nd birthday. Candice’s mother reportedly sent her a text to wish her a happy birthday, to which she received a response that simply stated “thanks”.

Unbeknownst to Candice's loved ones, a set of human legs were found in a garbage truck at a garbage sorting facility on the northwest side of Columbus on March 29th, 2017---just days after Candice was reported missing. It took nearly two years to identify who the legs belonged to, but in January 2019, investigators confirmed that the partial remains were that of Candice Taylor. At the time the partial remains were found, Candice’s mother still believed that her daughter was alive—as she was still receiving text messages from her phone for months after the fact. However, once the human remains were identified, police shifted Candice’s case into a homicide investigation. If Candice has been deceased since March of 2017, it is clear that the text messages that her mother received from Candice’s phone were not from Candice herself. It appears likely that whoever had her phone knows what happened to Candice, but the phone has never been located and police have not publicly announced any suspects or persons of interest in the case. Candice's case remains unsolved today. [read more]

6. The Disappearance of Taveta Hobbs
Taveta Hobbs has been missing since November 24th, 2008. The 43-year old woman was a Navy veteran who lived with her husband Phil Hobbs in Raleigh, North Carolina. Prior to her disappearance, Taveta was training to become a stenographer and working...

Taveta Hobbs vanished at the age of 43 on November 24th, 2008. She was reportedly last seen by her husband Phil Hobbs at their home in Raleigh, North Carolina. In late November 2008, Taveta's boss received a text message from her phone that stated she was quitting her job. Her boss found this odd, as Taveta was reportedly doing well at her job and she had not made any prior indications that she was going to quit. Even more unusual, Taveta never picked up her final paycheck. She has never been seen or heard from again.

Taveta's family members were used to going long stretches of time without hearing from her, but they began to worry when almost a year passed without any word from her. In October 2009, Taveta's brother finally filed a missing persons report. Once police began to investigate, they questioned Taveta’s husband Phil. He told police that Taveta abruptly left and never returned. She left behind her car and all of her other personal belongings. Police found it odd that Phil never reported his wife missing. He explained that he thought Taveta was leaving him. Still, police found it suspicious that Phil never attempted to contact Taveta and that there has been no activity on her cell phone or bank account.

In 2018, police announced that they believe Taveta was murdered. It is also believed that her killer is the one who sent the text to her boss to say that she was quitting. Taveta's husband is still a person of interest in the case, but unfortunately no arrests have been made. Her case remains unsolved. [read more]

5. The Disappearance of Bethany Decker
Image result for bethany decker

Bethany Decker vanished from Ashburn, Virginia on January 29th, 2011. The 21 year-old was quite busy during this time of her life--at the time, she was both a full time student and full time worker. She also was pregnant with Ronald Roldon's child. Bethany began having an affair with Ronald while her husband, Emile Decker, was deployed in Afghanistan. However, shortly before her disappearance, Bethany was open to working things out with Emile. She had also told friends that Ronald was abusive and she wanted to break-up with him for good.

It took weeks for Bethany to be reported missing, as her family members were used to going long stretches of time without hearing from her since she was so busy. However, during early weeks of February 2011, Bethany's friends began to receive bizarre Facebook messages from her. It has not been revealed what exactly those messages said, but apparently Bethany’s friends were immediately able to tell that the messages were not from Bethany. Her friends finally contacted her family on February 19th, 2011--and she was reported missing later that afternoon. 

Ronald Roldon has been a person of interest in Bethany's disappearance since the early stages of the investigation. He denies being involved, and is currently serving an 8 year prison sentence for physically assaulting another girlfriend in 2014. Unfortunately, he has not been charged with anything related to Bethany's disappearance. Bethany remains missing today. [read more]

4. The Disappearance and Murder of Kiera Bergman

19 year-old Kiera Bergman disappeared after leaving her Phoenix, Arizona home on August 4th, 2018. Her roommate, Destiny Hall-Chand reported her missing the following day after Kiera failed to return home or to show up for work. Destiny was immediately concerned about this, as her last communication with Kiera was a text message that Destiny described as “strange”. At some point after leaving her home on the 4th, Kiera sent a message to Destiny that said she was going to hang out with a man she met at the store a few days earlier. According to Destiny, this did not sound like something that Kiera would do. That message was the last known activity on Kiera’s phone and she was never heard from again after that.

Kiera's ex-boyfriend Jon Clark (23) was identified as a person of interest shortly after she was reported missing. Investigators learned that Jon was the last person to see Kiera before she vanished, although he denied any knowledge of her whereabouts. Kiera's loved ones also suspected that Jon had something to do with her disappearance--they felt that Jon was controlling of Kiera, and the couple had broken up very shortly before she vanished. The investigation took a heartbreaking turn on September 6th, 2018, when Kiera’s body was found in a Buckeye near Route 85. Her cause of death was undetermined, but it was investigated as a homicide. Jon Clark was charged with Kiera’s murder on the morning of September 11th, 2018.  At the time, it was believed that Jon killed Kiera and then used her phone to send the aforementioned text messages to Destiny.

Over a year after his arrest, in April 2020, the murder charges against Jon Clark were dropped. The judge decided to dismiss the charges after learning that prosecutors did not share information provided by anonymous witnesses with Jon's defense team. Additionally, the judge ruled that both investigators and prosecutors did not follow up on various tips from people who claimed to have seen Kiera alive on dates past August 4th, 2018. Many still believe that Jon Clark is responsible for Kiera's death, but for now he remains a free man. Kiera's case currently remains unsolved. [read more]

3. The Disappearance of Katelin Akens
Katelin Akens Wiki: What Happened to the Young Virginia Woman?

Katelin Akens vanished at the age of 19 on December 5th, 2015. At the time, she was visiting her family members in Northern Virginia. On the day of her disappearance, Katelin was scheduled to fly back to Arizona, where she lived with her fiancĂ©, Amber. Katelin's mother was unable to take her to the airport, she she arranged for her ex-husband/Katelin's ex-stepfather to drop her off that afternoon.  A few hours before Katelin's scheduled flight, her mother received a text from her ex-husband stating that he had dropped Katelin off. She also received a text from Katelin’s phone stating that she had arrived at Reagan International airport. However, around the same time, Amber also received a text from Katelin’s phone stating that “something had come up,” and Katelin would not be returning that day. Both Lisa and Amber later learned that Katelin never boarded her 5:40pm flight. Both tried to get ahold of her and were unsuccessful—until finally Lisa received another text from Katelin’s phone at 7:15pm, that stated she “just wanted to be left alone.” Katelin has not been seen or heard from since.

When questioned, Katelin's ex-stepfather told both family members and police that Katelin requested to be dropped off at Springfield Mall, from where she would walk to the Franconia-Springfield Metro station and take the Metro the rest of the way to the airport. However, there has been no evidence to support that Katelin was ever at that mall or Metro stop on that day. Additionally, 2 days after her disappearance, her luggage was found in a drainage ditch around 50 miles away from the airport. 

Katelin's cell phone pings added to the mystery as well. Investigators found that the initial text sent from Katelin’s phone to her mother, stating that she had made it safely to the airport, actually pinged off of a tower 30 miles away from the airport. The text Katelin's mother later received at 7:15pm on that night pinged off of a tower 15 miles from Fredericksburg. Additionally, the text that Katelin’s stepfather sent to Katelin's mother, stating that he just had dropped Katelin off, pinged near his home, rather than near the mall or airport. After learning this information, Katelin's loved ones began to believe the texts were not actually sent by Katelin herself. In fact, this information cast even more suspicion against Katelin's ex-stepfather. Despite all of this, the stepfather has never been officially named a suspect in this case—however, the investigation is still ongoing. Katelin remains missing today. [read more]

2. The Disappearance and Murder of Jholie Moussa
Justice 4 Jholie - Posts | Facebook

Jholie Moussa (16) disappeared from her home in Alexandria, Virginia on January 12th, 2018. That evening, she was doing her twin sister Zhane Moussa’s  hair, pausing every few minutes to text on her phone. According to Zhane, after receiving one particular text, Jholie abruptly stated that she had to go and promptly left their residence on foot. Jholie told Zhane that she would be returning soon, however, she never returned at all that night. A few hours later, Zhane received a text from Jholie’s phone that stated that she was going to a party in Norfolk–a town over 200 miles away from Alexandria. Jholie was never seen or heard from again.

While investigators initially believed Jholie had run away, her family members immediately knew something was amiss. Jholie did not have any direct ties to Norfolk and they did not believe she went there. Their fears were unfortunately confirmed two weeks later, when Jholie’s body was found in a wooded area at Woodlawn Park–located less than a mile from her home. At that point, police began to believe that whoever murdered Jholie also sent the text message to Jholie's sister about the party in Norfolk.

Jholie's 17 year-old ex-boyfriend Nebiyu Ebrahim was immediately looked into as a suspect. Jholie already had an order of protection set against him prior to her murder. Additionally, he was already charged for allegedly assaulting Jholie at some point throughout their relationship. Ebrahim was charged with Jholie's murder on August 31st, 2018. In September 2019, he pleaded guilty to the murder charges. Ebrahim was sentenced to 99 years in prison. [read more]

1. The Disappearances of Kala Brown & Charlie Carver
Mothers Desperate for Information about Missing Couple Kala Brown ...

South Carolina couple Kala Brown (30) and Charlie Carver (32) were looking to make some extra cash when they were hired by Todd Kohlhepp (49) to come to his home and clean his property. The couple went to Kohlhepp's home on August 31st, 2016--not knowing that Kohlhepp had very sinister plans. Shortly after arriving on the property, Kohlhepp shot Charlie to death. Then, Kohlhepp forced Kala inside a storage container on his property and chained her up. 

After Kala and Charlie were reported missing by their loved ones, Charlie's Facebook page continued to be active. In fact, a series of bizarre posts were continually popping up on Charlie's Facebook page, leading those closest to him to believe that somebody else was controlling the account. Investigators also tracked Kala and Charlie's cell phone pings in an attempt to locate the couple. They discovered that Kala's final cell phone ping was at Kohlhepp's property.

In November 2016, police obtained a warrant for the property. It was then that Kala was found chained inside the storage container. Kala told investigators that Kohlhepp had murdered Charlie and buried him somewhere on the property. She also mentioned that Kohlhepp had other previous victims, as well. Kohlhepp was arrested shortly thereafter, and it was soon revealed that Kohlhepp was a serial killer responsible for numerous other murders. 

While never confirmed, it is believed that Kohlhepp was the one posing as Charlie on his Facebook page. He eventually pleaded guilty to seven counts of murder and is currently serving a life sentence. [read more]

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

The Disappearance and Murder of Kiera Bergman


19 year-old Kiera Bergman disappeared after leaving her Phoenix, Arizona home on August 4th, 2018. Her roommate, Destiny Hall-Chand reported her missing the following day after Kiera failed to return home or to show up for work. Destiny was immediately concerned about this, as her last communication with Kiera was a text message that Destiny described as “strange”. At some point after leaving her home on the 4th, Kiera sent a message to Destiny that said she was going to hang out with a man she met at the store a few days earlier. According to Destiny, this did not sound like something that Kiera would do. That message was the last known activity on Kiera’s phone and she was never heard from again after that.

Kiera’s ex-boyfriend Jon Clark (23) was questioned shortly after her disappearance. Kiera had moved from San Diego to Phoenix months earlier to be with him. However, the couple split up sometime after her move and Kiera subsequently moved in with Destiny. Throughout the investigation, police learned that Jon was the last known person to see Kiera before her disappearance. When questioned, Jon denied having any knowledge about Kiera’s whereabouts and police ultimately did not evidence to charge him with anything. A few weeks later, though, Jon was arrested on unrelated charges. Police took him into custody on August 17th, 2018 and charged him with 22 counts of identity theft and forgery. He allegedly had been using the identities of several different people.

Meanwhile, the search for Kiera continued. The investigation took a heartbreaking turn on September 6th, 2018, when Kiera’s body was found in a Buckeye near Route 85. Her cause of death was undetermined, but it was investigated as a homicide. Jon Clark was charged with Kiera’s murder on the morning of September 11th, 2018. The Phoenix Police Department submitted a probable cause statement that ultimately recommends a first-degree murder charge for Jon. Kiera’s family members have stated that they are not surprised that Jon has been charged with her murder. Her family said that Jon was quite controlling of Kiera, and on the day she vanished, they had just broken up.

New indictment filed against Jon-Christopher Clark in death of ...
Jon Clark
Over a year after his arrest, in April 2020, the murder charges against Jon Clark were dropped. The judge decided to dismiss the charges after learning that prosecutors did not share information provided by anonymous witnesses with Jon's defense team. Additionally, the judge ruled that both investigators and prosecutors did not follow up on various tips from people who claimed to have seen Kiera alive on dates past August 4th, 2018.

Many still believe that Jon Clark is responsible for Kiera's death, but for now he remains a free man.
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Tuesday, April 7, 2020

The Murder of Anne Kasprzak

Who killed Annie Kasprzak — and WHY? 'Injustice with Nancy Grace ...

Annie Kasprzak was only 15 years-old when she was brutally murdered in March 2012. The young girl faced a lot of hard times during her short life. Annie spent most of her childhood in the foster system before she was adopted by Veronica and Dennis Kasprzak when she was nine years old. At some point after the adoption, Veronica and Dennis got divorced and remarried to other people. Annie primarily lived with Veronica and her new husband James Bratcher at their home in Draper, Utah, but she also still spent plenty of time with Dennis and his new wife as well.

Annie was last seen by Veronica and James around 7:45pm on March 10th, 2012. The couple checked Annie's bedroom about an hour later and noticed she was gone. Even more troubling, James found a note tucked under Annie's pillow that stated she was running away to California. Annie wrote in the note that she had told people she was pregnant even though she really was not. She ended the note by writing, "please don't try to look for me because I don't want to be found." After finding the note, Annie's mother and stepfather called the police to report her missing.

The police began their search by looking at Annie's cell phone records. They noticed that Annie's phone pinged several times between 8:45pm and 9:22pm in an area near the Jordan River. After the final ping at 9:22pm, the cell phone went out of service. Annie's parents also shared her diary with police in hopes that it would provide clues as well. Annie had written in her diary about her possibly being pregnant with 14 year-old Darwin 'Christopher' Bagshaw's child. Christopher and Annie were dating at the time, and just weeks before her murder, she told her parents that she was having sex with him. Annie's parents had her take a pregnancy test, which came back negative. However, Annie had entries in her diary that were dated after she had taken the test that indicated that Christopher still thought she was pregnant, and he did not want the baby.

Based on the note Annie left behind, her parents felt that she planned to run away because she was embarrassed about faking her pregnancy. Once the cell phone pings revealed her phone was still in the area, Annie's parents had hope that she would come home. Unfortunately, that did not happen. The morning after Annie was reported missing, a jogger spotted a significant amount of blood under a pedestrian bridge near the Jordan River. Police were called, and investigators began searching the surrounding area. Shortly thereafter, they found Annie's body in the water. She had been brutally beaten to death. 

Annie's case then shifted into a murder investigation. Police inevitably questioned Christopher, but he denied even speaking with Annie on March 10th. Eventually, though, he admitted that he did speak with her on the phone that evening, but he did not know who killed her. Christopher also told police that both he and Annie had hung out at a mutual friend's house in the days before her murder. He explained that Annie got a nosebleed while they were hanging out, and that she might have dripped blood onto him--which would explain why he had a small bloodstain on one of his sneakers. Investigators seized the shoes, along with a few other items, and later confirmed that the blood on his shoe did, in fact, belong to Annie.

Although Christopher denied being involved in Annie's murder, it appeared that police had evidence that indicated otherwise. Still, police did not arrest Christopher right away--and just a few days later, the investigation shifted away from Christopher altogether. About a week after Annie's murder, a woman named Joanna Franklin told police that she witnessed Annie being killed by Daniel Ferry (31) and Veanuia Vehekite (30) during a house party at Daniel's house. Joanna explained that Daniel got angry after Annie refused his sexual advances and subsequently beat her to death with the help of Veanuia.  Daniel already had an extensive criminal history, which is why investigators did not think Daniel's potential involvement was far-fetched. Daniel and Veanuia were both subsequently arrested and held in custody on suspicion of murder.

After their arrests, it appeared that Annie was closer to receiving justice. Unfortunately, this was far from the truth--and there would be many twists and turns in the case before justice was finally served.
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With both Daniel and Veanuia behind bars, investigators then began to try and build their case against the two men. Investigators searched Daniel's house, and they found plenty of evidence of criminal activity--but ultimately nothing was found that linked Annie to Daniel or Veanuia. After searching Daniel's home, he was subsequently charged with both drug possession with intent to distribute and kidnapping--however neither of those charges were related to Annie whatsoever. In fact, it was these very charges that would eliminate Daniel as a suspect in Annie's case altogether--as he was committing these crimes around the same time Annie was killed. After determining it would be impossible for Daniel to commit these crimes and kill Annie at the same time, police announced that Daniel and Veanuia were no longer suspects in Annie's murder. Joanna Franklin would later admit that she only told police that Daniel and Veanuia were responsible for Annie's death in hopes that it would help her break free of criminal charges that she was already facing.

After months of focusing on the wrong suspects, the investigators in Annie's case were back at square one. The case seemed to stall for a bit. Then, a new investigator took on the case and decided to take another look at those closest to Annie prior to her murder--including Christopher Bagshaw. 

Annie's friends reportedly told investigators that Annie had told them she was pregnant with Christopher's baby prior to her murder. Annie's cell phone records also contained messages that indicated that both Annie and Christopher had talked about running away together after she told him she was pregnant. Christopher's cell phone records also contained messages that he had sent to his friend, asking said friend to lie on his behalf about why Annie's blood was on his shoe. The text message read, "The cops might come back to your house. I need you to tell them that Anne got a bloody nose cause she did, but you were lying down and she got some on my shoe and they took my shoes for testing and I need you to tell them that so I don’t get blamed." 

Additionally, Christopher's cell phone records confirmed that Christopher spoke to Annie's mother on the phone the night she was reported missing. Annie's mother had called Christopher to see if he knew where she was, but he denied knowing anything about her whereabouts. However, during that phone call, Christopher's cell phone pinged off a tower located just 100 meters from where Annie's body was later found. It is believed that said phone call occurred very shortly after Annie's death. In October 2014, over two years after the fact, Christopher was arrested and charged with Annie's murder.

Utah teen sentenced 15 years to life for murder of girlfriend ...
Darwin 'Christopher' Bagshaw
Due to the fact that Christopher was only 14 years-old when the murder occurred, he was initially charged in juvenile court. Later, his charges were upgraded to adult status. In 2016, Christopher pleaded guilty to the murder charges. In court, prosecutors explained their belief that Christopher grew scared and angry after Annie told him she was pregnant with his child. He then lured Annie to meet him near the Jordan River under the false promise that the two of them would run away together. Once they met up, Christopher attacked Annie and began beating her with a shovel. Annie fought for her life, but unfortunately Christopher overpowered her and beat her to death. He then dumped her body in the water.

Christopher faced a minimum of 15 years in prison, however at his sentencing, his defense attorneys argued that the sentence should be lesser since she was only 14 when the crime occurred. Still, the judge ultimately handed down a sentence of 15 years to life in prison. Christopher remains behind bars today.
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Saturday, April 4, 2020

The Murder of Vanessa 'Honey' Malone


Vanessa ‘Honey’ Malone was only 18 years old when she was brutally murdered at an apartment complex near her family’s Stone Mountain, Georgia home on October 23rd, 2012. That day was a fairly typical day for Honey—she went to her job at a clothing store in the afternoon, and then walked home after her shift. Shortly after arriving home, Honey told her mother Flora Malone that she was going to walk to the Hampton Village apartment complex to spend time with some new friends. Less than an hour after leaving her family’s home, Honey was dead. She had been shot multiple times inside apartment 6902, and then her body was dragged into a closet and left there.

Detectives concluded that Honey walked into the apartment in the midst of a robbery and was likely killed while trying to flee the scene. Minutes after she was shot, a man and a woman who were inside the apartment called the police. They told officers that a group of three-to-six men busted into the apartment and tied them up with shoelaces and extension cords. They were then forced into the bathroom. The pair allegedly heard Honey enter the apartment and then heard the gunfire that followed, however they told police that they waited until they heard the suspects leave the apartment before they untied themselves and called 911.  

At first glance, it seems odd that detectives were quick to call this incident a robbery. The only thing that was stolen was Honey’s cell phone, but it was located on the ground less than half a mile away. Nothing else was reported stolen from the apartment. 

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The director of Atlanta’s Cold Case Investigative Research Institute Sheryl McCollum stated that the motive behind killing Honey did not make sense either. Sheryl told reporters, “If she ran away they could have fled as well. If Honey recognized them and they felt the need to kill her, it’s hard to believe that the killer(s) did not know the other victims too. Why was Honey’s cell phone the only one taken? She was in no position to use it.” Detectives from the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office maintain that this was a drug-related robbery and that the pair did not report anything stolen from the apartment because they would not report drugs as stolen. They believe that Honey was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Honey’s family members have a different theory. Honey’s sister stated that she believes Honey was targeted and was killed for possibly knowing information that the perpetrators did not want to be made public. Additionally, Honey’s family members do not think that Honey would voluntarily approach an apartment that had its door kicked in. The identities of the man and the woman who were inside the apartment during the alleged robbery have not been revealed. Honey’s killer(s) still remain at large today. If you have any information that could help find justice for Honey, please contact the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office at (404) 294-2911.
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UPDATE (4/04/20): An arrest has been made for the murder of Vanessa 'Honey' Malone.
On April 3rd, 2020, police arrested 34 year-old Donald Ash at his mother's home in Stone Ridge. He was charged with second-degree murder, making false statements, and concealing facts. Police have revealed very little information about what lead to Ash's arrest, however they have stated that they believe multiple people were involved in Honey's murder and they expect to make more arrests in the future. This case is currently unfolding and more updates will be provided as they come.

Donald Ash

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The Murder of Ci'Lina Deloney

Ci'Lina Deloney was only 21 years-old when she was found murdered on January 16th, 2017. Prior to her untimely death, Ci'Lina lived ...