Saturday, June 8, 2024

Pride Month: Unsolved LGBTQ Cases Vol. II

This Pride Month, it is important to remember the missing and murdered members of the LGBTQIA+ community. Several cases involving LGBTQIA+ individuals featured on True Case Files remain unsolved today. 

Each week during Pride Month, a set of 3 unsolved cases involving a missing or murdered member of the LGBTQIA+ community will be featured on this page. Let's continue to spread awareness on these cases in hopes that justice will be served.

The Disappearance of Colin Arey.

Colin Arey has been missing since January 25th, 2017. The then-26-year-old man was last seen in Brewer, Maine. According to reports, Colin's stepfather dropped him off at the Brewer Civic Center on the day of his disappearance. He has never been seen by his loved ones again.

Colin was not reported missing until June 25th, 2018 - nearly a year and a half after his disappearance. At that point, various family members realized that nobody had seen or heard from Colin in quite some time. A missing persons' report was subsequently filed with the Bucksport Police.

Very little information is available about the investigation into Colin's disappearance. Friends of Colin have posted online that he was in the local gay dating scene in the Bucksport area - but it's unclear if he was seeing anyone at the time he vanished.

There has also been some online speculation about Colin's stepfather possibly being involved in his disappearance. It also appears that Colin lived with the stepfather at the time of his disappearance, yet the stepfather never reported him missing. Despite these odd circumstances, the stepfather has never been publicly named a suspect.

If you have any information that could lead to Colin Arey's whereabouts, please submit a tip.

Read more about Colin's case.

The Murder of Irasema Chavez.

Irasema Chavez was found murdered inside her Arlington, Texas apartment when she was just 33 years old. Irasema had moved to the United States from Mexico just a few months before her murder, and she was reportedly enjoying her new home and life. Unfortunately, that life was cut short on January 20th, 2012.

Surveillance cameras captured an unknown individual entering Irasema's apartment on January 19th, 2012. It appears that the individual knocked on the door and Irasema let this person inside. The person later left the apartment.

The following morning, Irasema's niece was dropped off at Irasema's apartment so the two could spend the day together. When her niece entered the apartment, she stumbled upon a horrific scene: Irasema was dead. She had been stabbed over 100 times. 

Irasema's loved ones remain baffled by her murder. She was still new to the area at the time of her death, and she did not have any known enemies. According to family members, Irasema had made several new friends since moving to Arlington. She had also recently come out to her family as a lesbian. By all accounts, Irasema's life appeared to be moving in a positive direction before she was tragically killed.

To this day, no suspects have been publicly announced in Irasema's case. However, the individual in the surveillance footage is inevitably a suspect. Investigators have yet to identify this person. 

If you have any information that could help solve the murder of Irasema Chavez, submit a tip.

Read more about Irasema's case.

The Disappearance of Sage Smith.

Sage Smith has been missing since November 20th, 2012. The then-19-year-old lived in Charlottesville, Virginia at the time of her disappearance. She was reported missing after she never returned home from a first date.

Sage's life appeared to be moving in a positive direction prior to her disappearance. She had recently aged out of the foster system and had found her own place with a roommate. Sage also had recently come out as transgender. According to Sage’s grandmother Lolita Smith, Sage was reportedly very happy to be living her truth.

On the evening Sage was last seen, she told her roommate that she was meeting up with a man - later identified as Erik McFadden - for a date. Sage's roommate grew worried the following day, when Sage never returned home. Her roommate subsequently reported her missing that evening. 

Erik McFadden was quickly identified as a person of interest in Sage's disappearance. Unfortunately, investigators have never been able to question McFadden in person. He has evaded police for several years since Sage went missing. In fact, in June 2019, investigators officially opened a missing persons' case for Erik McFadden as well. 

Although Sage remains missing, detectives are investigating her case as a homicide. Her loved ones have not given up on their quest for answers. There is a monetary reward available for information that could help solve Sage's case.

If you have any information that could lead to the whereabouts of Sage Smith and/or Erik McFadden, please contact the Charlottesville Police Department at 434-970-3280.

Read more about Sage's case.


The next set of unsolved LGBTQ cases will be posted next week. 

See last week's unsolved LGBTQ cases.

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