Criminal logo

15 Scary Unsolved Mysteries Cases You Must Watch

Turn off the lights if you dare.

By The Writing CasperPublished 4 years ago 13 min read

Since 1987, Unsolved Mysteries cases have been intriguing to viewers. The profiled categories are: Unexplained Deaths, Lost Loves, Murder, Missing, Wanted, and Paranormal. However, this story covers people who have gone missing, people who are responsible for murders, and people who are murder victims.


This list is compiled of Unsolved Mysteries cases which aired throughout the run of the series:

15. Sherry Eyerly

During the late hours of July 4, 1982, 18-year-old Sherry Eyerly was working her shift at a local Domino's pizza shop in Salem, Oregon. Soon, an unidentified customer called the shop to place an order and Sherry was then on her way to make the delivery. She drove to a certain neighborhood and searched for the home address, which the customer had given her, but found that it was fictitious. A vehicle approached her and then blocked her from driving off. A man jumped out, held her at gunpoint, and abducted her.

Sherry Eyerly/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

For 25 years, Sherry's family continued to hope that she would be found, dead or alive, and remained determined to know who was responsible for her abduction.

In 2007, the case was solved. William Scott Smith confessed to having murdered Sherry and received a life sentence without the possibility of parole.


14. Rebecca Young

In April of 1991, 21-year-old Rebecca Young was mutilated with a machete in a sugar cane field near Belle Glade in Palm Beach County, Florida.

Several days after Rebecca was murdered, a witness called a local police department and identified himself only as "Antonio". He provided the descriptions of two men who were responsible for Rebecca's death, and claimed she had referenced one of the men as "Ricardito". Also, he mentioned the exact location of her body. The men left the scene in a Blue Ford Bronco, but "Antonio" couldn't see the license plate.

Rebecca Young/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

As investigators researched Rebecca's background, they learned she was dating a man who forced her into prostitution. The man also maintained shady dealings with drug traffickers. Investigators believe Rebecca was murdered as a result of his thievery.

The case has been inactive for years and the whereabouts of "Antonio" remain unknown.


13. Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

In November of 1987, 20-year-old Jay Cook and 17-year-old Tanya Van Cuylenborg were found dead in Seattle, Washington.

The couple traveled on a ferry from Victoria, Canada to Port Angeles, Washington. Police speculated they boarded a second ferry from Bremerton to Seattle. While on the ferry, they were approached by a man who asked them for a ride because he claimed that he lived only two miles away. So Jay borrowed his father's van, and all three started the journey to the man's alleged destination.

At a certain point, Jay and Tanya were held hostage by the man. Tanya was raped and then shot in the head. Jay was beaten and then strangled. Both were bound with plastic tie wraps.

Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

During the spring of 2018, William Talbott was charged with the murders of Jay and Tanya.


12. The New Orleans Serial Killer

On August 4, 1991, 17-year-old Danielle Britton was murdered by an unidentified man in New Orleans, Louisiana. She was found covered with trash at an illegal dump site near the Superdome. Not too long before her death, she was seen with an unidentified man outside of a bar. Police suspected that he was her killer.

Within the same year and into January of 1992, a total of four women were murdered.

One survivor, "Brenda", was nearly strangled to death, by an unidentified man who forced her into his car, and, as a result, her vocal cords were damaged. Her attacker then dumped her on the side of the road. The next morning, she awoke while lying in trash. She described her attacker to police and a composite sketch was produced.

In 1995, Victor Gant, who is a former New Orleans police officer, was suspected to be the killer. However, no evidence was found to connect him and he may have been aided in a cover-up because of his law enforcement status.

In 1998, Russell Ellwood was convicted and sentenced to life for the murders of two women. Although he's a suspect in the murders of the other four women from 1991 and into 1992, no evidence has been found.

Two composite sketches of the New Orleans serial killer/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries


11. Elizabeth Ann Campbell

On the night of April 25, 1988, 20-year-old Elizabeth Ann Campbell disappeared while on her way home in Copperas Cove, Texas.

Only a few minutes earlier, Elizabeth Ann and her boyfriend engaged in a bitter argument. When she mentioned that she wanted to go home, he declined to give her a ride. She then hitched a ride, from one of her peers who attended Central Texas College, to a 7-11, where she worked part-time, and called her boyfriend. Another argument ensued and she began the walk home.

Elizabeth Ann's parents, Tom and Sam Campbell, reported her missing the next morning. However, according to the police, not enough time had lapsed for her to have been considered a missing person.

At the time of Elizabeth Ann's disappearance, she was 5'2", 96-106 lbs., with brown shoulder-length hair, and brown eyes. Her clothing consisted of a white t-shirt, a yellow jacket, and a 7-11 smock with her name-tag attached. Also, she wore a diamond watch and a gold ring which bared encrusted sapphires and diamonds.

Left: A photo of Elizabeth Ann Campbell shortly before her disappearance/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries - Right: An age-progression photo/Photo Source: Missing and Exploited Children

A total of three people claimed to have spotted Elizabeth Ann, during three separate incidents, with a man who was of Asian descent and bared a rugged appearance. They all also claimed the man's demeanor toward Elizabeth Ann was possessive. His identity remains unknown.

Although sex trafficking was apparent in the area, speculation that Elizabeth Ann had been forced to be a sex worker hasn't been validated.

Elizabeth Ann's purse was discovered in the storage space of a local police department in the spring of 1992.The purse was believed to have been turned in between 1988 and 1989.


10. Tammy Lynn Leppert

On July 3, 1983, 18-year-old Tammy Lynn Leppert disappeared while hanging out with a friend in Cocoa Beach, Brevard County, Florida.

During the previous month, Tammy Lynn exhibited signs of anxiety and paranoia. Her demeanor was one of fright and was so intense she had become a recluse. Her behavior surfaced after her brief appearance in the 1983 cult film 'Scarface'. The film was popular during an era when drug trafficking was running rampant throughout the state of Florida. Within the same week of her disappearance, she mentioned to her mother, Linda Curtis, that someone was trying to kill her. She refused to eat because she feared the food contained poison, and she also battled insomnia.

Tammy Lynn Leppert/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

At the time of Tammy Lynn's disappearance, Christopher Bernard Wilder was wanted in the area. He was known for posing as a magazine photographer in order to lure aspiring models. Police suspected him to be a serial killer with a count of 8-12 victims who were all women from Florida to California. However, he was never linked to Tammy Lynn and was killed during a shootout with police in 1984.

The friend who Tammy Lynn had been hanging out with mentioned he dropped her off not too far from the 'Glass Bank' (which has since been demolished), and he was clueless as to where she had gone after she walked away while barefoot. Although he wasn't considered a suspect, Tammy Lynn expressed that she feared him.

To this day, Tammy Lynn's whereabouts, whether alive or dead, remain unknown. Before Linda's death in 1995, her dying wish was for her daughter to be found.


9. Jane Doe and Jock Doe (1976)

In August of 1976, a man and woman were discovered dead on the side of a road in Sumter, South Carolina. They both were shot to death and had no identification.

Police noted they were possibly foreigners and were either hitchhiking or had been killed for their vehicle. A witness mentioned having spotted a man as well as a woman at a fruit stand, and both closely matched the composite sketches. Also, a man claimed to have met them prior to their deaths, and the male victim introduced himself as "Jock" which could be interpreted as Jacques.

Jock Doe (or Jacques): Caucasian, 6", 150 lbs., brown eyes, brown hair, 18-22 years-old, extensive dental work (bridges and crowns), an expensive watch, and an expensive ring with the inscription 'JPF'.

Jane Doe: Caucasian, 5'5", 100 lbs., 20-22 years-old, brown hair, blue eyes, two moles on left-side of the face, and a Mexican-style ring.

Composite sketches of Jock and Jane Doe/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

Both victims were assumed to have been brother and sister, which stemmed from their similar facial features, but, years later, DNA tests proved they weren't related at all.


8. John Cheek

On the night of December 2, 1993, 28-year-old John Cheek disappeared after he left his office in Downtown Memphis, Tennessee.

John's car was found parked near the Memphis-Arkansas Bridge. The speculation was that he may have jumped to his death. However, his body couldn't be located in the river.

Ron Jackson, a trucker, claimed he saw a man who fit John's description loitering in front of White's Truck Stop in Raphine, Virginia. His clothing was neat and his dress shirt was 'so clean and white'. He was wearing a pair of moccasins and appeared to be disoriented. While both men talked over breakfast at the truck stop, the man mentioned he was staying in a homeless shelter. Soon, they parted ways.

Prior to John's disappearance, he was working 18-hour days, as a financial officer, and was set to collect one million dollars. His father, Richard Cheek, mentioned that his son was overworking himself, and was possibly under so much stress that he detached himself from reality. He also confirmed that his son owned the same moccasins which Ron claimed he was wearing.

John Cheek/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

Overall, there has been no trace of John over the years and what may have become of him sadly remains unknown.


7. Robert Dennis Blair Adams

During the early morning hours of July 11, 1996, 31-year-old Canada native Robert Dennis Blair Adams, whose friends and family simply called him 'Blair', was discovered dead in a parking lot in Knoxville, Tennessee. He suffered blunt-force trauma to his stomach. Also, his pants were turned inside-out and $4,000 (in U.S., German, and Canadian currency) as well as $2,000 worth of gold/platinum jewelry was scattered around him.

Prior to Blair's death, he had embarked on a strange journey from July 5th - July 11th. During several attempts to pass U.S. Customs, he was turned away because he had a large sum of money in his possession -- a common characteristic of a drug trafficker. Soon, he suddenly showed up at a friend's house in the middle of the night to ask her if she could drive him to the Canadian-American border, but she declined. He revealed to her that someone was trying to kill him, but then he bid her a farewell and left. Not too long after, his last attempt to pass U.S. Customs was successful.

Robert Dennis Blair Adams/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

At one point, Blair purchased a round-trip plane ticket for a flight from Vancouver to Frankfort, Germany. Although he showed up the next day, as scheduled, to turn in the ticket, he left and never returned. Also, he was captured on a hotel surveillance camera repeatedly entering and exiting while looking over his shoulders as if he were anticipating someone or something. However, after he finally paid for a hotel room, he left and never returned to claim it.

On the day of Blair's death, during an investigation, there were no signs of foul-play nor were there signs of an accident. Overall, there is no valid reason(s) for his journey, the circumstances surrounding his death, nor what he could've been running from. Or if he were running from himself.


6. The I-70 Killer

During the spring of 1992, several murders occurred throughout the Midwest (Indiana, Missouri, Kansas, and Texas). All of the victims were retail workers and were on their shifts at the time of their deaths.

The suspect was armed with a .22 caliber pistol, and he opted to shoot each of his victims in the back of their heads. Majority of the victims were female while only one was male. Police believe the suspect had mistaken the male as a female because his hair was long in length.

A witness described the suspect's manner as nervous and his appearance was disheveled.

Suspect Description: 20s to 30s, 5'7" to 5'9", tall/slender, lazy eyelids, and sandy-blond or reddish highlighted hair (in 1992).

A composite sketch of the I-70 killer/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries


5. Joseph Weldon Smith

On the night of October 6, 1990, in Henderson, Nevada, Frank Allen arrived home. He felt something was wrong and decided to check around the house to see if anything was out of the ordinary. As he walked through the hallway, 50-year-old Joseph Weldon jumped out at him from a closet and began chasing him with a hammer. He managed to dodge Joseph in the kitchen and then ran though a glass door to escape.

Frank reported the incident to a security guard on the premises which launched a search by two police officers. As the officers searched for Joseph, they found the bodies of his wife, Judith, and two step-daughters, 12-year-old Kristy and 20-year-old Wendy. They had been murdered and were dead for nearly 24 hours. Joseph was the prime suspect because he was the only male occupant in the house at the time.

Joseph Weldon Smith/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

Joseph evaded arrest for one year until a tip revealed he was staying at a local motel. During his trial, he received the death penalty.


4. Kathy Hobbs

On the night of, 16-year-old Kathy Hobbs had walked to a nearby grocery store in Las Vegas, Nevada. As she walked out of the store, she was abducted, murdered, and then left in the desert.

Not too long before Kathy's murder, she expressed to her mother that she had premonitions of death. She didn't believe she would reach the age of 16, but was surprised when she did.

Kathy Hobbs/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

An unidentified man called into a local police station and claimed to be a witness. He mentioned that he saw the suspects, two men, who were responsible. However, his claims couldn't be confirmed and he never came forward publicly.

Although Michael Lee Lockhart was suspected, no evidence was found to connect him.

Kathy's murder remains unsolved.


3. Bill Henderson

After one whole day passed and 66-year-old Bill Henderson's family couldn't get in touch with him, his son, Garry Henderson, son-in-law, Frank Pohlmeier, and Frank's step-daughter, Sherry, visited his home on May 16, 1991 and found him dead in his bedroom in Washburn, Texas.

When police conducted an investigation, they concluded Bill was beaten and strangled. After he was murdered, his wallet and pick-truck was stolen. Only a few days later, a man found Bill's wallet on an Interstate and left it at a local police station. Bill's truck was found one day later after it was abandoned outside of Chicago, Illinois.

Bill Henderson/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

On the day of Bill's murder, two young men reported a stolen pick-up truck which bared a similarity to Bill's. The men mentioned riding with an unidentified man who they feared. When they all arrived at a rest stop near Oklahoma City, they informed the attendant that they suspected the truck was stolen. Strangely, the truck hadn't been previously reported.

A composite sketch of a suspect circulated, but no arrests were made.

15 years later, Lawrence Tutt, a career criminal and drug addict, was connected to Bill's murder. The DNA evidence of a bloody palm print, found on a writing tablet in Bill's bedroom, confirmed he in fact committed the murder. He was convicted of first-degree murder and received a sentence of 45 years.


2. Beverly Ann McGowan

When 34-year-old Beverly Ann McGowan was found mutilated near a canal in St. Lucie County, Florida on July 18, 1990, who was responsible for her murder and why she was murdered was unknown.

Prior to Beverly Ann's death, she had advertised for a roommate. A woman who identified herself as "Alice" responded and they both scheduled to meet at Beverly Ann's condo. "Alice" mentioned she was skilled in numerology; so she performed a reading. Beverly Ann revealed confidential information about herself only to be contacted later with a request for additional information.

Beverly McGowan/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

The identity of "Alice" was connected to a woman named Elaine Parent. According to a criminal record, Elaine lived a life of crime out of high school. For a woman of average height, as well as an appearance which was unassuming, she was known to have a ferocious temper. One of her ex-partners confirmed she was so fearful of Elaine that she once drove 80 miles past her own home because she knew Elaine was there.

As evidence mounted against Elaine, regarding her involvement in Beverly Ann's murder, she continued to elude capture in the United States as well as the United Kingdom.

By 2002, Elaine was residing in Florida and during that same year she received a visit from the police. She committed suicide, by a gunshot to the chest, as they waited for her to change her clothes in order to be escorted to the police station to be questioned.


1. Marie Lilienburg and Maria Wahlen

Sweden natives 23-year-old Marie Lilienburg and 25-year-old Maria Wahlen were found dead in a creek in Santa Maria, California in August of 1983.

Both women were working as maids at a local motel to earn money during their temporary stay in Los Angeles. Before preparing to return to Sweden, they decided to tour the coast and continued to hitch rides with strangers in order to get to specific locations. After their bodies were found, police interviewed the drivers who picked up both women. They received a tip about a man identified as "Loren" who was seen driving away with both women in a van. The man became a suspect who turned out to be Loren Herzog.

Left: Marie Lilienburg - Right: Maria Wahlen/Photo Source: Unsolved Mysteries

While under pressure during an interrogation regarding the murder of a hunter in 1994, Loren implicated Wesley Shermentine, who was a long-time friend. Both men were drug addicts and favored speed as their drug of choice. While under the influence, they embarked on a journey of murder which started in 1984. Since they were both seen around the same areas which Marie and Maria hitched rides, Wesley was considered a suspect alongside Loren. Although Loren confessed to the murders, he and Wesley were never connected to them.

Loren committed suicide in prison in 2004.

Wesley is serving a life sentence.


About the Creator

The Writing Casper

I am an avid writer.

Enjoyed the story?
Support the Creator.

Subscribe for free to receive all their stories in your feed. You could also pledge your support or give them a one-off tip, letting them know you appreciate their work.

Subscribe For Free

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

    The Writing CasperWritten by The Writing Casper

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2024 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.