I have the privilege and honor of introducing Lesley from the Unsolved Appalachia blog for this Guest Entry. Her blog is one of the best out there. And I encourage everyone to check it out. She is also an example of the kind of diligent work that needs to be done in this field.

Shurlock


Natasha Alexandra Augusta Carter (Alex) was 10 years old when her non-custodial mother, Susan Gail Carter allegedly abducted her from Beckley, Wv on August 8, 2000. On November 13th of that year a felony arrest warrant was issued against Susan for the kidnapping of her daughter.
There had been a contentious custody battle between Susan, and Alex's father Ricky Lafferty. According to Alex's grandmother, she was afraid of her mother and didn't want to live with her. The last time Ricky spoke with Susan, she told him that he would never see his daughter again…

It's believed that Susan fled the state with Alex, and there could possibly be an unnamed male in their company. She could be using the alias of Susan Gail Webb or Susan Gail Carter Webb, and has more than likely altered her appearance in some way.
Susan has never been reported missing by her family, or the man she was married to at the time that she disappeared, which leads me to believe that they knew something about her plan to kidnap Alex. Otherwise, you would think they would want to find both of them.

Susan Gail Carter (Webb) Photo from the Help Find Natasha Alexander Augusta Carter - Alex Facebook page

At this time, Alex has been missing for nearly eighteen years. In this day and age of technology and cameras at everyone's fingertips, you would think someone would have seen something. Especially Alex, she would be nearly 29 years old now. Wouldn't she have taken to social media at some point and out of curiosity look for her father?
Maybe Susan told her that Ricky died, or maybe due to her young age at the time of her kidnapping Susan was able to brainwash her over the years. Who's to say that she even remembers that her name is Natasha, we simply don't know what type of mental abuse and manipulation she could have been a victim of.
Age progressed picture of what Alex may look like today.


Her father is still searching for her, never giving up hope that her mother wouldn't stoop to the level of taking Alex's life. I truly do hope that she is alive out there somewhere.
If you think you may know or have seen Natasha Alexandra Augusta Carter or Susan Gail Carter Webb, please contact the Pineville Police Department at 304-732-8000 or the West Virginia State Police at 304-746-2100.
For the Lost


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Want to give Julia a big shout out. She did this post super quick. And its really one of the best posts I have ever read. She is such a good writer. It takes me forever to get a post done. This post is so good I felt I had to share it before Valentines Day. Also, Julia's work on a case was featured  on the podcast The True Crime Enthusiast. Please give it a listen to. 

Shurlock


Valentines Day Post



In April 1999, two students, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold murdered 12 of their Columbine High School students and a teacher. Ten months later, tragedy struck the school again when two students were murdered, but this case is still unsolved.

Stephanie Grizzell and Nick Kunselman had been dating for two years. They were sophomores (aged 16 and 15, respectively) at Columbine High School, and became especially close after the tragic shooting in 1999. They both liked sports, Stephanie was on the swim team and Nick was a Colorado junior disc-golf champion. They were in love.
February 13, 2000 was a Sunday. Stephanie had spent most of the day at home, doing homework and spending time with her mother. Later that evening, Stephanie snuck out to the Subway sandwich store where Nick had worked for the past month. Nick was in charge of closing the store at 10pm, and Stephanie came to pick him up and waited for him in the store.

Nathan Grill, a former Subway employee, was at the shop Sunday night with a friend. He left at 10 p.m. and said Nick was waiting on a customer.

A female co-worker passed by the store at 12:40am. The lights where still on after the 10pm closing time. The woman decided to check in on the store because this was highly unusual. She saw a young man walking away from the store, dressed in a red jacket and flared pants.
Stephanie and Nick were found dead inside. They had been shot in the early hours of Valentine’s day. Their bodies were found behind the store counter.
Stephanie’s mother Kelly found out about her daughter’s murder on the news in the morning. “It said breaking news and it said there's been a man and a woman shot at a Subway sandwich shop in Littleton,” she said.
Kelly saw Stephanie’s car on the television and rushed to the scene. When she arrived, investigators informed her what had happened. “I just remember lying on the ground, on the
cement and just hoping that that wasn't true, that I would wake up from this nightmare,” Kelly said.
Nothing was taken from the store, indicating this crime was not a robbery, as was the first thought of the investigators. Police widened the net of what this crime could be. Subway offered a reward of up to $10,000 in the case. A drug ring (mostly cocaine, some marijuana) was uncovered which operated near the store. Police also found that drugs were occasionally sold at the Subway location, and buyers would come in through the back door. Investigators’ lead theory was that Stephanie and Nick’s murders was a drug deal gone bad.
A year after the murders, Kelly filed a wrongful death suit against the Subway store. In the suit, she alleged that ‘the owner knew about drug use at the store but did nothing about it, and that nonemployees often entered through a back door where they bought and sold drugs.’
It was further claimed that a surveillance camera in the store was known to be inoperative. "They turned it off so they wouldn't capture the employees' drug use," Kelly’s lawyer said. "Just about everybody who worked there was on drugs." 
Other theories include gang activity or a jilted lover driven by jealousy. But to this day, 18 years later, the case remains unsolved, with few leads. Police never identified the man who the witness saw leaving the store. He is considered a person of interest. Police still maintain that drugs were involved in the murder.

The Suspect

A man was seen exiting the store by the female employee who found Nick and Stephanie’s bodies. The man is white, 16 to 18 years old, 5-foot-7 to 5-foot-8 inches tall, weighing 150 to 170 pounds, clean shaven, with blondish hair. He was wearing a black ball cap, a black coat with a red lining or a red shirt or sweater, black or blue flared jeans and white tennis shoes. He left the area on foot.

Drug connections
Rumours have long swirled that the Subway store was a hot-spot for drug activity. Police have stated that they believe there is a drug connection to the murders.
Were Stephanie and Nick involved in drugs? As part of her lawsuit, Stephanie’s mother Kelly said that Nick ‘may have used marijuana’. Stephanie and Nick have been described as “refugees of the '60s, for whom peace and love were goals, even though both were born in the 1980s”. They sound like your typical pot-smoking hippie teenagers. They certainly don’t sound like they would be involved in dealing drugs. But could they have been murdered buying drugs? Drug dealers can be dangerous individuals, but I still don’t see why someone would murder a 15 and 16-year-old in relation to drugs… How far into the drug scene could kids that age be, how could they have any drug debts worth their life, it just doesn’t make sense to me.
Police have investigated the drug ring thoroughly: The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration were involved, wiretaps and polygraphs were used, 35 people were arrested on drug charges but no one in connection with the murders.
Police seem to have good reason to think the murders are drug-related. That’s still possible, but I don’t see how Stephanie and Nick would be killed buying or selling drugs. They were just teenagers and I don’t really see a motive.

Wrong time wrong place?
I have a hard time believing a 15-year-old boy would be a target for murder and wonder if the killings of Nick and Stephanie were a tragic wrong place, wrong time scenario. It has been established that the Subway store was a place where employees did drugs, and drugs were bought. It’s possible that the killer went to the store looking for someone else but unfortunately Nick and Stephanie were there instead. But still it doesn’t really make sense to kill Nick and Stephanie, why not just come back another time looking for the intended target?
Was the Columbine massacre a factor?
Stephanie and Nick attended Columbine High School, where 12 students and a teacher were murdered by Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold who then killed themselves.
The Subway where Stephanie and Nick were murdered was only three blocks from the school.
Is this just pure coincidence? Some people online think the murders of Stephanie and Nick are connected to some sort of Columbine conspiracy theory, but that’s not what I’m talking about. Is it possible that the murderer was also a student at Columbine who was there that day? Could they have been inspired by Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold? 
It sounds far-fetched. But sometimes cases go cold because the actual solution is so far-fetched. Something that doesn’t have a clear connection, or an obvious motive.
The suspect seen leaving the Subway shop was described in a way that sounded a lot like a high school student. If the killer was a student, maybe they had a score to settle with Nick. Nick would be the target in this scenario. The killer would probably know that Nick worked at Subway, and what time he would be closing the shop. If someone wanted to kill Nick, Sunday night at a deserted Subway would be a good opportunity. Stephanie would have just been unlucky; not even her mother knew she was at the Subway that night.
Another coincidence is that one of the April 1999 Columbine victims, Rachel Scott, worked at the same Subway store when she died. Her and Nick were friends; Nick once drew a pencil portrait of her and this was given to Rachel’s mother after she was murdered. 

Maybe one day we will find out the motive for these crimes. I’m guessing whatever it was, was nowhere near worth the lives of these two kids or the pain and suffering of their families. Looking at their pictures and reading about Nick and Stephanie, I just can’t comprehend what would make someone want to hurt them. RIP Nick and Stephanie, a young couple killed on Valentine’s Day, who were buried together.


Considering Cold Cases would like to give a big thank you to CrimeBlogger1983 for having me as a guest blogger on his fantastic blog.


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This post was previously titled: What Happened to James Wray Miller?


James Wray Miller's daughter Kristene reached out to me asking me to bring attention to her missing father's story. I am happy to do so. I do want to point out that there are very little details surrounding this case. What you read here is absolutely all that is known in the case so far. Also, I want to commend Miller's daughter Kristene who not only made this entry very easy to write. But who also single handily has fought to try and find out what happened to her father. She has provided me all the info. I didn't need to assist her with anything other than writing this entry. 

Shurlock


Popular Song at the Time

Human- Human League
(Credit for Video HERE)
Name: James Wray Miller
Date Of Birth: April 9th 1956
Parents: Elmer "Mike" Miller & Mary Jane Miller
Girlfriend (At The Time): Sue Grewell
Education: Dropped out of school in the 10th Grade. Acquired GED.
Date Missing: 12/9/1986
Missing From: Ames, Iowa
Height and Weight: Around 6'1 & Between 175 and 200 lbs
Eyes and Hair: Blue Eyes, Brown Hair
Distinguishing Characteristics: Dimple in Chin, Dental Plate for 2 Front Teeth
Medical Conditions: Alcoholic

“He wasn’t a bad person. When he was sober, he had a really good heart,” Feldhaus said in a recent phone interview from her home in Webster City, Iowa. “When he was drunk, he was a different person,”

Kristene Feldhaus

Another Pic showing him a little older and with a Mustache




Circumstances of Disappearance:



James Wray Miller was awaiting trial for allegedly robbing the Randall Story State Bank in Randall, Iowa on August 8th, 1987. On December 9 of 1987 Miller was staying at his parents house while awaiting trial. While they were out James Wray Miller took 2 checks from his parents home, And along with his car he left never to be seen again. (One of the checks were cashed. The other was not) He was legally declared dead in 1999. James Wray Miller had a pretty good rap sheet up until his disappearance as documented below. Although with the exception of the Bank Robbery (No one was hurt) and him striking a Police Officer while intoxicated. He didn't seem to be a violent individual. Now there is some discussion among his family of whether he actually robbed the bank or not. An anonymous tip was called into the F.B.I. four days after the bank robbery stating his then girlfriend Sue Grewell was overheard discussing his involvement in the robbery. The amount taken from the Robbery wasn't a big amount at all. A measly $2,596. (The small amount taken does not condone the act however.) He was awaiting trial when he apparently fled. No doubt partially due to him being understandably scared. Since he fled the trial was never held. And he was never found guilty. According to his daughter. The F.B.I. would pay their family a visit for years afterwards thinking that they knew where he was. Even though they were wandering about his whereabouts as well. He was legally declared dead in 2000. 









ARTICLES


DES MOINES TRIBUNE- 10/23/1974

AMES DAILY TRIBUNE- 8/12/1975




AMES DAILY TRIBUNE- 9/13/1975


AMES DAILY TRIBUNE 9/13/1975

DES MOINES REGISTER- 7/28/76




DES MOINES REGISTER 8/15/1986




POSSIBLE BREAKTHROUGH

The information obtained here came from his daughter Kristene's persistence in finding out what happened. She believes she has found a match. And there are tests currently underway to determine if this John Doe is in fact her father. I must say, She could do what I do. And probably be better at it than I. 

YOLO COUNTY SHERIFF: JOHN DOE CASE # 6397-301-1987



September 19th 1987

This John Doe was recovered deceased in the Sacramento River when he tried to save a drowning woman who's truck plunged into the river in September of 1987. The Tower Bridge was raised without warning. Sending the truck into the water. Patti Fink, A 51 Year Old Alcoholics Anonymous Counselor drowned as a result. Another passenger in the truck a James Shaughnessy also drowned. There was also someone in the truck bed. She survived the incident. This John Doe dove into the river in an attempt to save her. He also drowned. His body was recovered 3 days later. The entire incident was a fuck up by the bridge tender who was drunk at the time. (Michael Souza, 38 of Rio Linda Apparently Michael Foster Souza struggled with Alcoholism for the remainder of his life and passed away in 2002 of cirrhosis of the liver) Apparently Fuck Ups are also in the nature of the County Coroners Office at the time because they cremated this John Does remains before fingerprints or dentals could be done. 


The Press Democrat (Santa Rosa, California) 9/21/1987

Santa Cruz Sentinel- 9/24/1987
Reno Gazette Journal- 1/9/1988




MORE TO THE STORY

Apparently he was initially identified per documentation discovered on him when his body was discovered. Turns out he was not that person. The John Doe was carrying a Birth Certificate in the name of Daniel Joseph Read. He was still alive in Missouri at the time. Mr. Read did live in California at one time. And he had been missing that copy of his Birth Certificate since 1969. Apparently it was stolen out of his truck at some point. 

Santa Cruz Sentinel 10/11/1987

Then another man came forward claiming the John Doe was his brother. A Steve Keith came forward and claimed the John Doe was his brother Anthony Curtis Keith. Turns out Steve Keith was a Con Man and was looking to obtain a Death Certificate for the purpose of changing identities. He mailed the cremated remains back to the Coroner's Office with an apology. Didn't help the idiot tho. He was charged with Body Snatching. 


Los Angeles Times- 10/23-1987




Since that time. This John Doe has never been identified.....


WHAT DO YOU READERS THINK?

Pic Courtesy of Kristene Feldhaus


UPDATE


Turns out Kristene was correct the entire time. The Bridge Hero turned out to be her dad! I wanna say something real quick about her and her family. Kristene is about as unique a woman as you'll ever meet. Her and I have been close since she asked me to do her father's story. So close now I call her my sis. I've only met a few people as determined as she is. As she was to find her father. And I'm extremely grateful that I was contacted by her. And that she is now my friend. She and I even vent on each other. Just like siblings would. I can't say enough about her. 








This part was written by Kristene herself (My Sis :)

Quite a bit has happened since I first reached out to you regarding some added help in broadcasting my father's disappearance and my apparent discovery of his final truth.  When I originally reached out I had seen your blog and broadcast on the missing Facebook page that I had joined when first trying to find my dad.  

In July 2018 after months of looking at my deceased fathers pictures the Coroner from YOLO County called me and verified what I had known all along.  I had found my father who had died in 1987 while trying to save a truck full of individuals who had driven off of the Tower Bridge due to not seeing any warning lights that are normally activated while the bridge is raised for a passing ship.  The night my father died he was talking to another transient on the banks of Sacramento River when they both witnessed the accident unfold.  Dad had heard the screams and raced in to help but unfortunately he died in the process.  The active year of searching for dad was very unreal to me because I was racing against a clock.  The days were winding down on my grandmothers life and I knew at age 93 that we had to hurry.  I wanted desperately to tell her that her son was a hero and that she should be proud.  I never got to do that because she passed 3 weeks before the call was made to me.  I tried everything in my power to get the final results before she passed- I even called the top boss for DOJ in California by getting a "name" and googling it.  The man was shocked to hear my voice on the other line but I needed to let them know the importance of hearing the DNA results.  Fast forward to the end of my search.  I was able to fly into Sacramento and meet the Coroner who made my father her mission.  Her Doe needed to go home and certainly someone had to be looking for him.  I was- for a long time before I ever named my last baby after dad.  Technology and the internet really is what helped me verify and close this very sad chapter of my life.  During my search for dad I had to find someone who I could talk to that was not my husband.  A husband can only see pictures of deceased John Does and hear my complaints for so long.  I didn't want to drive him more crazy than I already had.  Shurlock received my email while I worked a graveyard shift in surveillance at my local Casino.  A job that really made me lose my faith in humanity some days.  Watching Santa get arrested and shootings doesn't help one really see a great future.  I was happy to see a fast response by him and shortly we were on the phone discussing my findings.  Thanks to Shurlock he helped product a piece on dad that was close to perfect.  Though I have found out some details have changed regarding my father via conversations with the family that I can have now that we know his eternal status.

I brought dad home in August and he has celebrated birthdays with us, Christmas, been at local politicians offices, and also he had his first birthday balloon since 1986.  Shurlock and I have not lost touch at all and I keep an eye on his writings and researching which shows his true dedication to the missing and the family members left behind.  

Since returning with dad I have tried numerous times to visit with local politicians and far off elected officials in whatever office will hear my plea of the importance of NamUs.  I found dad simply because I had a Coroner who utilized NamUs for her unknowns.  Our Country has a huge epidemic far worse than measles and far worse than the local celebrity scandal.  We have tens of thousands missing and more Unidentified Doe's  The search engine left me with options of States to search, gender, race, dates missing, physical characteristics and so forth.  I found dad within 2 months of knowing about NamUs.  I had called the NamUs reps and she had processed my missing persons report for my dad and I went to the local Sheriffs office to give my DNA sample.  The initial thought or statement was 3-6 months and that scared me because I wanted to let grandma know and it was hard keeping this secret. The local police department had become a headache for me because they refused to acknowledge dad as a missing person.  He had been declared dead since 2000 and they didn't want that headache.  NamUs fought for me and apparently DCI even got involved.  The whole time I had dad in NamUs his profile was never public because the police department would not sign off on it.  At least I had my DNA processed and we got to add grandma's in as well.  

The reason I want NamUs to become a legal step for law enforcement and medical examiners is so that a family of a missing individual can get their family members information put into NamUs rather quickly and in the end- if their body is found years down the road in another State then there will already be dental, DNA, and identifying information that can potentially be matched with that newly found John/Jane Doe.  Law enforcement should not have to hold a family back in finding their loved one like so many are.  So many families are missing their loved ones for years without needing it to be the case.  I could have potentially found dad in 2009 if I knew about the program and it was more of a public knowledge factor.  Family could have had the answers almost a decade before.  How sad that we had to suffer for so much longer.  I cried far too many tears during each of my pregnancies and was devastated the first time my grandmother said she thought my dad was dead.  She died thinking he was dead but I could have made her proud with the final version of his heroism and his selfless act in wanting to help complete strangers.  NamUs needs to be a household name and these tens of thousands of missing, unidentified, and even unclaimed individuals need to go home.  Home can either be as a living breathing person or as a Doe who finally has a place to be buried or a home to be remembered.  I'm very mad my father died because of a drunk man operating a bridge and by passing safety mechanisms but I'm so thankful he was putting others before himself and trying.  Those are the stories that match up with so many of my family members.  

My newest goal is to make NamUs become legislation that will ensure all missing persons are entered into their database and eventually get all John/Jane Does in Iowa where they belong.  If only I could find an elected official who cared as much as I do.  
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