Police Officers Share The Creepiest Disappearance Cases They've Ever Worked On
There's something profoundly unnerving about missing persons cases. They have the tendency to send our imaginations hurtling into the darkest of places.
We can't seem to get the shivers out of our bones thanks to Redditor urak47, who asked: "Police officers of reddit, what's the creepiest disappearance case you've ever been assigned to?"
"The last transactions..."
I track missing persons accounts for a bank in coordination with the police.
One day a cop called and said they wanted to track the accounts of a woman who had gone missing at the hands of a dangerous trafficker.
The last transactions I could trace since she disappeared was at one of our branches. I pulled the footage and the trafficker was pulling a bunch of money from her account.
I received an alert the next day from the account stating that a purchase was made. The purchase was from a hardware store. Shortly after, the next purchase was for a carpet cleaner rental.
Needless to say, cops contacted us and says they suspect he killed her but they couldn't locate a body.
Irked me. Felt like I had witnessed a murder through simple financial transactions.
My grandfather was a policeman and a fireman at different points in his life. His 'spooky disappearance' story actually came from his time as a fireman. He hasn't told me the story in a long while so I'm a little fuzzy in the details, but here goes:
His team gets called to a house fire in a small village (rural England). It's late at night, the fire is reported by a local who was walking home. Several other bystanders have arrived by the time the fire engine gets there, and there are multiple reports of screams for help from inside the building. They start to douse the fire and three of the responders (including my grandad) enter the building via the back door to attempt to rescue the people trapped inside.
The thing is, they don't find a soul. Nobody is there. They clear the whole place out, stop the fire, effectively make the building safe. Later on, it's confirmed that the fire started in the kitchen, likely the hob, where food was midway through being prepared. As far as anyone knew, the couple who lived there had been at home. Relatives had no idea where they might have gone that night.
My grandad and his colleagues have a funny feeling, so they get local police properly involved. Crime scene investigation uncover blood on the floor in one room, but any other evidence was destroyed in the fire. They can't confirm who the blood belongs to - it apparently didn't match the blood types of the two vanished residents.
The fire department are very suspicious at this point and apparently the police want to drop the investigation in favour of a manhunt for the missing people, but they end up expanding the investigation radius and find that apparently an unidentified van was parked outside the house that left just before the fire was reported. The investigation goes dead, but over a year later they find the burned remains of the man who lived there in a grave in the woods several towns away. They never found the woman so it was suspected that she killed him and burned down the house to conceal it. They never figured out were the screams from inside the building were coming from, though.
"We get a call..."
We get a call from a husband that his wife and mother in law have been missing for three days. Their two small children are with dad and he claimed he didn't know what happened.
The husband had massive history of domestic violence with his first wife, and we were pretty concerned for the well-being of his wife and mother in law, especially since they vanished without packing and didn't take the kids.
I show up at the house, and the husband gives me the creeps. Just a really weird vibe and every single hair on my body is standing up. I feel nothing but dread as I listen to him tell me that he has no idea where they went and couldn't explain why he waited three days to call police, especially with two small kids at home.
We couldn't find any trace of evidence and I was really perplexed.
Found out later that the wife and her mom went across the US border to go shopping and they both got arrested for shoplifting and were spending a week in jail while waiting for trial, since they were Canadians and a flight risk.
It was hilariously awkward breaking the truth to him. But a huge relief.
"Dealt several times..."
Dealt several times with a young mother who would always go missing for a few days and leave her child with relatives. Several missing persons reports over time. Turns out she was shacking up with her dealer boyfriend in a nearby city.
One day the lady walks in and says her daughter was kidnapped. I do some work and find the aunt took the child because mom is just a terrible person.
State did not want to get involved so we have to give the kid back. I turn to my partner and tell him mom will definitely be dead within a few months. Probably turn up in a ditch or dumped in the river where she goes to visit her dealer boyfriend.
Fast forward three months and I turn on the news to see a story of a woman found dumped in the river. It was mom. She was stabbed to death by her boyfriend and dumped in the river. That one creeped me out a bit.
Not me personally but other officers on my department; 70 year old female with dementia would often leave her home and go for walks around her property. One day, she never came home and it should be noted that we live on an island 30 miles out from the rest of the United States. State police, K9s, our entire department, news helicopters, coast guard helicopters and boats, marine division, all searched land and ocean for this women.
We reviewed security footage at the airport and steamship ferry to see if she boarded either to leave island, but she didn't . She was never found and to this day, we don't know what happened. Two theories have arrived though; she walked right into the ocean and somehow her body disappeared and new washed up or two, she walked into to the construction site of a sewer plant and fell into a tank full of waste just before the tank was permanently covered.
Responded to missing person report. Husband was the caller reporting his wife was missing. Wife had debilitating condition and was bedridden for several months. Husband said he went to dinner across town and discovered wife was gone upon returning home. No sign of her in the house or in the area. No kids were living at home. Search and rescue came out and spent all night searching the area with no luck. Scent dogs didn't even find anything. The whole time I'm imagining we're going to be discussing this case sometime in the future on forensic files.
It was an eerie feeling to be sitting with a man and talking to him while thinking he may have just killed his wife but having to treat him like he was a concerned husband.
Fast forward to the next day and a neighbor found her about a block and a half away tucked down behind their bushes in their yard. No foul play, turns out something just happened and wandered away, but lost energy and collapsed in that yard. Sadly, she reported seeing the glow sticks on the scent dog collars walking nearby on the road, but nobody or none of the dogs came close enough in the yard to find her until that neighbor came out that next morning.
"I'm a corrections sergeant..."
I'm a Corrections Sergeant for a small county in rural Alabama. About two years ago; I had just become a supervisor. I was assigned to Delta Shift, which at that point was considered the "bad shift". I was brand new and given the task of whipping this bunch shape. I was barely one month in the driver's seat, when one of my most trusted inmates just goes insane. It was in mid- February when this occurred, relatively cold and very crappy. The inmate involved had been in and out of the facility for most of his life. "Papa" had nearly more clout in the jail than I did. The man was the most trusted inmate we've ever had and was even assigned to work alongside the maintenance officer with limited supervision.
Until the night that he ate nearly two ounces of drugs and proceeded to freak the hell out. Papa asked to be let out to fix a toilet in booking. The Control officer let him out and then let him roam up to the booking foyer. Here, we entirely lost track of him. The Detention Center spent the next nine hours on lockdown thanks to this. When my officers finally found him, he had gotten into the ceiling access with a stolen key. Papa had watched us from the master monitor in the server room the entire time. Every time someone would look in the server room, he would hide INSIDE the cabinets. If we got too far from finding him, he would scream at the top of his lungs until we turned around. All from the ceiling across the entire jail.
Creepiest experience of my life.
"She was walking home..."
My stepdad worked a case.
My dad and my little brother lived in an apartment down the street from this 12 year old girl who went missing
She was walking home at night and was abducted on her way. It was about 3 weeks until they found her but the guy let the officers in and right there in middle of the living room floor was her mangled remains.
"Then she goes missing."
Not a cop, but I watched this case unfold near me. Zahra Baker and her dad were originally from Australia, but after she got sick (I believe it was a form of cancer) they moved to get better care. It was just the two of them for a while. Then her dad remarried all the while Zahra's kicking cancers butt. She suffers hearing loss and other issues, but she's going strong. The community adores this girl and tries to help her family as best as they can.
Then she goes missing. It's shocking and horrible, this girl can barely do anything herself and she's gone missing? It takes the media by storm - relatively small town so everyone cares. This area is surrounded by woods so search parties branch out everywhere. Not much is told about Zahra's family at first - no one cares about speculation when a girl like her is missing. And then all at once these horrible details are released by the police: Zahra was locked in a room (the attic I think, I remember commentary about how hot that can get and everyone being disgusted by it), the abuse at the hands of her stepmother.
The stepmother is arrested quickly and the investigation wraps up fast. They find Zahra about a month or two later, and the entire community mourned her for years. She's still brought up in the news occasionally. She was about the same age as me when it happened and I remember my mom not letting me play in the woods because we didn't know what was happening.
DQ: What's the creepiest missing persons case that you know of?
Those who grew up between the '80s and early 2000s have a long memory of items and experiences that either went out of style or disappeared completely.
From early PC games to Blockbuster to favorite snacks, there's a lot to miss from childhood.
But the odd thing is how quietly some of these things went away, and how few people seemed to notice.
Feeling nostalgic, Redditor lukiiiiii asked:
"What quietly went away without anyone noticing?"
"ROFL (Rolling on the Floor Laughing) dropped off of the face of the planet, and now we just go straight from LOL (Laughing Out Loud) to LMAO (Laughing My A** Off)."
"I've been using it way more lately because of this. ROFL; can't let the classics die."
Save Those Box Tops!
"Actual toys in cereal boxes and Cracker Jack boxes."
The Early Facebook Years
"Facebook 'Poke' wars."
How the Times Have Changed
"People calling them 'camera phones.'"
"When you turn off the TV, how the image would shrink to a dot before slowly fading away."
"When you turn off the TV and then you run your finger on the screen and hear the crackle and feel the static on the glass."
Positive Environmental Change
"It was a huge environmental issue in the late 70s through the early 90s. Rain was acidic and damaged fertile areas among other things."
"In the US, there was much research done, and eventually industrial regulations were put into place. Companies were allowed to decide what approach they chose to take as long as the results showed the appropriate amount of reduction in sulfur dioxide emissions."
"Unfortunately, positive news doesn't sell, so news outlets did not do justice to reporting this success. As we went into the 2000s, hardly anyone remembered what was done."
Can We Say, 'Nom Nom Nom'?
"McDonald's all-day breakfast menu."
"The pandemic killed a lot more than just people. I really miss McDonald's all-day breakfast."
"And being able to go to Walmart at 2 AM."
The Days of Landlines and Cords
"I live in a rural area and have to pay for landline service to have internet. Since I have to pay for something so stupid, I figured I'd have to get something stupid."
"...So I got the hamburger phone from the movie 'Juno.'"
"Not gonna lie, the landline has come in clutch a few times, and holding a hamburger to your ear is amusing every time. 10/10 would recommend."
Late-night Grocery Runs
"I think people have noticed now but at the time, nobody noticed it was happening: the closing of 24-hour stores. I live in a major city and we don’t have a single 24-hour grocery store ever since the pandemic."
"In a World Where..."
"Movie trailers with that deep voice guy [Don LaFontaine] doing the voiceovers."
"SoBe. I think the last time I had one was at Quizno's."
"[cue 'X-Files' Music]"
Gizzard the Taco Bell Dog
"Taco Bell used to have a chihuahua as their mascot. Little dude just disappeared one day, and anyone born after 2000 probably doesn't even know what I am talking about."
"Google+ was the only social media our school forgot to block on our laptops, so I used it a lot. RIP."
Some of these really brought back some deeply-engrained memories for the '80s to '00s kids, and it's true that many of them blipped out of existence quietly.
But if this teaches us anything, it doesn't mean that "out of sight, out of mind" also has to mean "out of heart."
And let's have a moment of silence for the vocal stylings of Don LaFontaine and Gizzard the talking Taco Bell dog.
We all know that the human body is very complex.
But even with all the recorded and available science, there are certain things about our bodies that continue to elude us, and medical experts can still get stumped about how the human form reacts unpredictably.
Curious to discover some of the mystifying yet unsettling truths about our anatomy, Redditor Hot_Banana_Ice-cream asked:
"What is a creepy fact about the human body?"
Now, observe this.
"If you wear glasses which vertically inverts your vision long enough, your brain will correct it, and you'll see things normal. But when your take those glasses off, everything will look upside-down again until brain recalibrates again."
"Our brain filters out a lot of what we see along with just straight making sh*t up based on extrapolation."
"My favorite is the blind spot at the center of each eye, where the optic nerve is."
"A lot of people don't even know it exists, and even if they do, it is bigger than people often think."
"And it's also really easy to demonstrate to people if you know how. It's one of my favorite bar tricks - all you need is a pen and a napkin to draw a cross and a dot."
Alternate demo: https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/chvision.html
"Edit: If it doesn't work, you're doing something wrong - not getting close enough, the image is too small on your phone, you're not closing the correct eye or not keeping your gaze fixed on the cross."
"It isn't because you don't have a blind spot. Unless you're a squid, you have a blind spot. All vertebrates have them."
The workings of our innards are out of this world.
The intestines are covered by a double "fleece" of peritoneum. See it like a blanket.
When your intestines get damaged for whatever reason, this blanket starts moving out of itself and crawling upwards towards the place which has the injury. It will stay there until the injury is recovered. And then move on again.
Maybe not the most creepy fact, but definitely interesting in my opinion.
Do Do That Doo-Doo
"We don't just have one anal sphincter. When poo comes along it passes another inner sphincter which isn't under voluntary control."
"Sensory cells can detect whether you're about to pass gas or solid. From toddler age on, you can decide to go or not to go. If the time isn't right (e.g. at a friend's house or no toilet nearby), the inner sphincter can push the poo back and store it there for later."
"That's why sometimes if you need to do a number two but don't go, the urge goes away after about 20 minutes later. (But seriously, go if you can. Constipation risk.)"
"Gas can't be pushed back so easily, so we sometimes toot by accident when moving or engaging the core."
The Same Lining
"The inside of your cheek and your rectum are lined by the same type of tissue."
You don't always have control of your body.
Taste Of Curiosity
"The front of your tongue is curious, constantly patrolling, and autonomous. It chases the dentist around your mouth and you aren’t even aware of it. So embarrassing and weird/creepy."
"In dental school, I learned this fact when practicing taking impressions on each other. My buddy’s tongue kept licking my finger. I asked him to quit licking me, and he was like 'I can’t help it!' And then we switched places and my tongue wouldn’t leave him alone.And for those of you that don’t think your tongue does this: some of you are right. But the majority of you just think your tongue is behaving, but it is all over the place without you even knowing."
Dancing With The Dead
"Bodies will move as they’re coming out of rigor. I’ve been bumped by a few (I’m a coroner). Bodies can also make sounds as the remaining air/ gas leaves… 2am in the morgue and I thought I was in COD zombies."
Wonder of wonders.
The Only Way Out
"When you get laser tattoo removal the ink doesn’t disappear, you pee it out."
"Your body’s immune system breaks down the pigments of ink and it flows in your blood stream, gets processed through your kidneys, then you pee out the ink."
Our soul-containing vessel is a mysterious wonder unique to us.
We should do whatever it takes to take great care of it because it's the only one we've got.
If we don't, they might turn on us.
When the global pandemic hit in march of 2020, countless companies saw themselves going under.
Sadly, some companies, from a wide variety of businesses, simply couldn't adapt to working under the parameters of social distancing, or couldn't adapt in time, resulting in them permanently closing their doors.
Many people were sad to see these companies close, while many others were even sadder that some companies managed to pull through and stay open.
Indeed, long before Covid-19 wreaked havoc on the world, some companies and corporations people felt were actually detrimental to society would be doing the world a favor by going out of business.
Redditor param_T_extends_THOT was curious to find out which companies people fell into this less than prolific category, leading them to ask:
"Which company could go out of business tomorrow and it would be to the betterment of this world?"
Nothing Express About It
"Express Scripts."- BadDadJokes
Wildly Different, Yet Equally Unnecessary
"Glitter manufacturers."- Sped-Connection
Where To Even Begin?
"The church of Scientology?"- dipshipsaidsochurch building GIF by South Park Giphy
Beware The Pyramids
"Any MLM bullsh*t."- Work-Alone
Taylor Swift Would Probably Agree
You Really Want To Trust Them With Your Money?
"HSBC, one of the largest banks in the world, is a criminal enterprise:"
"In 2012, the bank paid $1.9 billion to settle charges brought by U.S. authorities that it had failed to prevent money laundering by Mexican drug cartels."
"In 2013, HSBC was fined $1.92 billion by US and UK regulators for its role in the manipulation of the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), a benchmark interest rate."
"In 2014, the bank was charged by the U.S. Department of Justice for violating sanctions against Iran, Sudan, and other countries."
"In 2018, the bank was charged by the US Department of Justice for violating the Bank Secrecy Act and anti-money laundering regulations."
"Also, Nestle."- alecsputnik
"Joel Osteen's ministries."- ststevegJoel Osteen Highwire Live GIF by Volcano Live! with Nik WallendaGiphy
Maybe All Big Pharma?
'Seems like the general consensus is Nestle, but I’ll be weird and say DuPont."
"They’re the reason every living human on the planet has Forever Chemicals running through their bloodstream."-poppidypoppop
"Blinded By The Light"...
"Everyone one that makes blindingly bright low beam bulbs."- RetinaMelter9000s
One Bad Experience Can Ruin It Forever
"Mark's plumbing."- GreenieMachinie93Rockos Modern Life 90S GIFGiphy
"Oh The Wells Fargo Wagon Is A Comin' Down The Street..."
"Wells Fargo."- Itchy_Focus_4500
Honestly, Can't Agree With This One
"F*cking TurboTax."- camilofl20
"Dirty mercenary army with soldiers for hire."
"They have caused chaos where ever they have gone."
"Syria, Central African Republic, Madagascar, Libya, Venezuela, mali, Mozambique and a few other places, they have no desire to see a peaceful world as that would financially cripple them as a organization."
"Look at what they are doing to the Ukrainian people."
"Despicable organization and they have zero moral compass."- Weary_Violinist_3610
Maybe all Credit Reporting?
"Experian, Equifax, and/or Transunion."
"Leeches on America."- compusmackSmiley Face Thumbs Up GIF by Tier One CreditGiphy
Can't Help But Say It, Did She Really Think "goop" Was An Appealing Name?
"Comcast & goop."- celeresaharano·
Be it poor customer service, questionable business practices, or just plain fraud, it's hard not to agree that any or all of these companies would not be missed should they close their doors.
After all, when a health and wellness brand openly tells you that some or all of its products may not actually improve your health or wellness, that just about says it all.
...even if Shakespeare in Love remains a romantic gem...
Even if society as a whole seems to become more tolerant with each passing year, bullying still remains an ever-growing problem.
Particularly at schools.
Some might say bullying has only gotten worse, as social media often means children are no longer safe when they're out of school hallways and in the comfort of their own homes.
What is perhaps most disturbing and perplexing about bullying is there is never a justifiable reason for people to behave so appallingly.
Often, children bully other children to make them seem cool or powerful in the eyes of others.
Most of the time, they will also pinpoint a certain thing about their helpless victims as a feeble excuse to justify their bullying.
"What were you bullied for?"
Trying Too Hard
"I was socially awkward."
"I also was greatly motivated to be liked."
"I did a lot of sh*t trying to be liked that in hindsight, made me unliked."- EVEseven
Health Conditions Beyond Their Control
"Eczema which often affected my face."- Puffs01
Name Calling? Seriously?
"I was called a biscuit head, because my head was shaped like a biscuit."- cerakaz
It's Not Like They Chose It.
"My name."- maximus12121
Only Cowards Don't Pick On People Their Own Size
"Being the small kid."- occamhanlon
Picking On People For Keeping To Themselves? Just Cruel.
"For being the quiet kid."- actuallyjohnqmind
No Reason Whatsoever
"To this day, I really don't know."
"Something happened in the summer between 2nd and 3rd grade that made a bunch of people decide that they didn't like me anymore, including my best friend.'
"I only had two friends left until my family moved away in the middle of 7th grade."
"Bullies would follow me home most days and my mom finally had to verbally super-saiyan a few parents down the street to get them to take it down a notch."
"I finally asked one of them what I ever did to them, and they said 'you were born'."
"How do you even respond to that statement."
"I just got a sharp pang after seeing that phrase again."- msprang
Ignoring It Is Enabling It
"I was bullied from age 6 to age 13 every day for my surname (a word for a hunchback in my language) , my looks, my nature, me knowing English, reading, drawing and just existing overall."
"I f*cking hated middle school."
"My mom tried standing up for me, but no one cares in Slavic countries and the teachers didn't give a sh*t even though they saw everything, it's all part of growing up."
"My father ignored my constant tears and the terror I experienced in those years."
"I was attacked, beaten, and targeted whenever i would leave my flat."
"I was stabbed with screwdrivers and dull knives, chased around the neighborhood by kids on bikes while they threw rocks at me."
"I was only invited to birthday parties so that the kids would have someone to terrorize and gang up on."
"I always hated birthdays, but my mom though maybe the children would be kinder to me out of school."
"But that's that."
"Once I began high school I was around all new people, and I decided to play as a tough girl and stood up for myself on the get-go."
"But it turns out art school mostly brought other bullied kids together and I had the 4 best years of my life there with other kind and loving people who just wanted to make friends and have fun."- Cropalitet
Knowing They Wouldn't Fight Back
"Being easy to walk over."
"I had a really hard time asserting myself."
"So being 'too nice'."
"But really, just very insecure."- idolovehummus
"And my mom smoked continuously so being poor and smelly."
"Kids are brutal."
"For those that can relate I'm wishing you all the best for where you are now."
"We are a product of where we came from but that doesn't define who we are today."
"For those that can't relate, I'm so glad you had a different childhood and also hope you are doing well."
"And for those that find this is their moment to continue to bully, I hope kindness finds you and helps you with whatever you need to have a brighter day."- Evil-ish
Red Hair Is Beautiful, And Don't Ever Forget It
"Glasses, red hair, and freckles."
"Opie, Howdy Doody, and red-headed step child jokes all the way through school."- espifer
"Having red hair."- DeplorableKurt
In Other Words, Just For Being Yourself
"As a black kid, in a predominantly black area:
"Wearing glasses and having braces."
"Wanting to be a Pilot (influenced by the Anime I liked the most)."
"But guess what?"
"I'm a f*cking Pilot now."- ApacheOc3lot
Perhaps the saddest, or most infuriating, cases of bullying are when people bully others for sharing likes or interests they have themselves.
Case in point, and true story: being bullied constantly through 2nd and 3rd grade for liking Mighty Morphin Power Rangers."
Only to see several of the people who bullied you express their excitement at the release of the 2017 film version of Power Rangers on Facebook.
Some children are just, plain cruel...