Are These Girls and Young Women the Victims of a Serial Killer(s)
On November 1st of 1974, 13 year old Lisa White left her home in Vernon to visit a friends house in the Rockville section of town. When she finished visiting her friend, she left to go home and was last seen on Prospect Street heading in a southerly direction to Oak Street. She has not been heard from since. She was described at the time as having blonde hair, blue eyes, 5 feet tall and 110 pounds.
Lisa’s disappearance was the third of five in a ten year time frame in the area of Vernon.
On July 24, 1968, 13 year old, Debra Spickler vanished from Henry Park as she got separated from a cousin as they walked to a pool. Though there was an investigation into her disappearance, her case garnered little media attention in that she was not from Vernon but from the southern part of Connecticut. Spickler’s parents passed away never knowing what happened to their daughter.
Another disappearance on July 26th of 1973, would get statewide attention and resulted in major searches for then 7 year old Janice Pockett who disappeared just blocks from her home in the neighboring town of Tolland.
Janice had told her mother she was riding her bike to go to a spot in the woods nearby that day, her bike was found but she to this day has never been found. Janice’s parents & grandparents never found what happened to her and her sister still continues the search to find out what happened. This case has haunted Eastern Connecticut for around fifty years and is Connecticut’s most famous disappearances of a person or child .
In 1975, 20 year old Vernon Resident Susan Larosa was reported as missing from her home on Ward Street, not far from where Lisa White was last seen alive around a year earlier. The young mother of three was found deceased years later in a wooded area just miles from her home just a few hundred yards from Interstate 84. While it is not known who killed her, she and her husband had a relationship that was alleged to have been violent at times.
Sadly, people in the town of Vernon would soon realize that they possibly had a serial killer in their area when Patricia Luce, then 18, disappeared in July of 1978 after a trip to a convenience store in Vernon. Luce who was at one time an acquaintance of Lisa White, was found deceased years later in a wooded area of Marlborough, several towns away. However, Vernon and Tolland were not the only towns in the area to have young girls and women disappear as well as others being murdered.
The July 21, 1975 the suspicious death of Stephanie Olisky happened two towns away from Vernon not far from Interstate 91. The 15 year old town resident had been found near death on Route 5 in East Windsor. She died days later from complications of serious head trauma, the manner of death is undetermined. She had last been seen cutting through the woods of what would eventually become a Movie Theater complex which has in the last few years been torn down. Theories range from falling off a motorcycle or being bludgeoned with a heavy object. Her death remains a mystery.
On August 16, 1975 the body of an unidentified woman was found behind an old department store on Frontage Road, not far from Interstate 95 in East Haven. She had been bound and gagged and was estimated to be between the ages of 18 to 29 years old, Police estimate she had been killed days earlier. Her identity is still unknown but a known convicted killer is a suspect in her murder. For more information on this case click on this link East Haven Jane Doe 1975.
On March 26, 1976 thirteen year old Dawn Peterson was found murdered a block away from her home in North Windham. She had been bludgeoned to death. A teenaged neighbor named Andrew Carr was tried for her murder but acquitted. Her homicide occurred just a few towns away from the disappearances in Vernon and Tolland. Her murder is still unsolved. Carr has supposedly ever been in trouble with the law since the trial.
On August 27, 1978, 17 year old Janette Reynolds vanished on her way hitchhiking from Middletown to her hometown of Griswold near the Rhode Island border. She had been last seen at Four Corners in Colchester allegedly getting into an International Scout (car) that was believed to be blue and had a white top. The car had been seen heading eastward on Route 16. Nearly a year later, Reynolds was found deceased March 25, 1979 in Groton under the Gold Star Memorial Bridge. Her murder still has not been solved.
It was thought many years ago that many of these cases could have been linked yet no strong evidence has ever proved that. Over the years arrests were made in other sexual assaults, two individuals particularly stand out. One is a former volunteer firefighter. The other is a former metalshop teacher. One is deceased and the other is alive. Additional information on Lisa White can be found at the Charley Project. If you have any information regarding the disappearances of Lisa White and Debra Spickler as well as the murders of Susan Larosa and Patricia Luce please call the Vernon Police Department at 860-872-9126. For information regarding Janice Pockett, Dawn Peterson and Janette Reynolds, call the Connecticut State Police at 860-779-4900. Any information on the murder of Stephanie Olisky can be relayed to East Windsor Police at (860) 292-8254.
Around the time of these disappearances, there were several accounts of women and young girls having had men sexually expose themselves. Author and Police Officer Michael Bouchard wrote a book about Connecticut Disappearances and has taken an interest in the Vernon/Tolland area disappearances and murders. He believes he knows who may be responsible for several of these cases. He refers to the individual(s) as “The Vernon Creepers.” His book was published in the Summer of 2018.
Below is a black and white photograph of a young cheerleading team that has pictures of both Lisa White (2nd from right in back row) and Patti Luce (2nd from left in front row). Photo is believed to be from the late 60’s or early 70’s. Photo was provided by Lisa White’s mother.
Drawing of a potential witness in the Patti Luce Murder.
Victim Still Unidentified Decades Later
A grisly discovery occurred when an Unidentified female estimated to be in her mid-twenties that was found in garbage bags near the railroad tracks on Myrtle Street in New Britain across from what used to be the Fafnir Bearing Company. The victim was found by a survey crew on October 11, 1991, she is probably white or light skinned Hispanic. She has been described as being five feet, five inches tall and around 130-135 pounds. She was shot in the head and was deceased for approximately two months. The victim was wearing a white sun dress with no sleeves. The sun dress has a pattern of panda bears consisting of a panda holding a red ice cream, a panda holding a red umbrella, a panda holding a yellow heart, and two pandas holding each other. She had a small tooth that protruded from her mouth that gave her a distinctive smile.
UPDATE: August 2019, DNA testing from the DNA Doe Project reveals that this woman is believed to be of Puerto Rican ancestry and could have relatives and ancestors from Moca, Puerto Rico.
IF you have any information about any of these crimes, please call the police at 860-826-3069 or 860-826-3000. All calls will be confidential.
One Woman Dead, One Woman Missing, One Suspect
Nineteen year old Mary Aaron Frattalone (pictured left) went missing July 2, 1981. Her skeletal remains were found a month later in a wooded area of the Rte 123 and Rte 15 Commuter Lot in the Norwalk/New Canaan area. Her cause of death has never been determined. Before she went missing she and her husband (James “Purple” Aaron) had discussed getting a divorce. The Connecticut State Police list her death as a homicide and suspicion has fallen on her now ex-husband.
Years later on February 1st 1985,
Twenty year old, April Grisanti went missing from Anthony’s Cafe on Main Street in Norwalk. To date she has never been found. Her then boyfriend James “Purple” Aaron was the last person seen with her. Hours earlier they had a physical fight. Aaron was eventually convicted of her kidnapping but has denied killing her. The mother of Grisanti successfully sued Aarons for damages that her daughter had suffered before she went missing. Aarons is looked at as a person of interest in her disappearance.
The two cases have gotten some attention recently and the Connecticut State Police have made these two cases a high priority.
Anyone with information about the death of Mary Aaron is asked to contact the Connecticut State Police Western District Major Crime Squad at the numbers listed below. Connecticut State Police Western District Major Crime Squad (800) 376-1554, (203) 267-2220 You can email them at Wdist.email@example.com
If you have any information about the disappearance or murder of April Grisanti you are urged to call the Norwalk Police Department at 1-283-854-3000.
Justice Is Still Elusive in New Haven Hit And Run Fatality
It was early Saturday morning on August 20, 1994 when 24 year old Richard Riccio and a group of his friends were walking on the Tomlinson Bridge on Forbes Avenue near Waterfront Street. Riccio was struck and killed by a vehicle described as being white, gray, or light-colored. It was a small to midsize car, possibly of Japanese make, maybe a newer model. Witnesses accounts state that the car was driven by a male with a possible female passenger in it. It is believed that the vehicle sustained damage to the front end and hood area, the front grille, and a smashed front window. The car was last seen driving from Styles Street over the Q Bridge, off Interstate-95 into the James Street area. The State of Connecticut has authorized a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for this for this crime. If you have information you may contact the New Haven Police at 203-946-6304.
Innocence Stolen Forever
On June 22, 1977, eight year old Renee Freer left her home on Williams Drive in Monroe at 6pm that evening to visit a friend whose house was just up the street. When she didn’t return, a relative started to look for her. Not finding her, the relative called the police at 9:15 pm. Her lifeless body was found at 10:12pm that evening about 300 yards from her house near Hattertown Road. The young girl from Monroe, CT had been bludgeoned to death. Her skull was bludgeoned and a large stone was found nearby. She had last been seen wearing a blouse and shorts. When her body was discovered the collar of the blouse was found slightly torn. To this date, no one has been charged with this horrendous crime. There is a 50,000 dollar reward being offered in this criminal case. If you have any information about this brutal crime, please call Lt. Stuart at the Monroe Police Department at 203-261-3622.
No Arrest Yet in Murder of Restaurant Owner
Back in 1973, Joseph Pellicci was a member of a family that owned the Stamford restaurant named Pellicci’s Restaurant. He was reported missing on February 4, 1973, his car found abandoned on Wyndover Road. Ten days later two of his pistols were found on the ice covered Greenwich Reservoir. His body was eventually found on March 2nd in the town of North Salem, New York. He had been shot twice in the head.
It was revealed later that the lead investigator of the Pellicci murder case was on the payroll of a New York Mafia family. He died before he was convicted of various criminal charges. It is not known if the deceased detective had anything to do with this case not being solved. There are two suspects in this homicide, one has since died. If you have any information about this cold case, please call the Stamford Police Department at 203-977-4417. There is a monetary reward.
Home Invasion Leads To Brutal Execution
At 10pm on the Saturday evening of April 15th 2000, Dean Meade was standing with two friends outside his home in the North End of Hartford. Meade and his friends had just returned from New York City that night. Two men walked up to his house at 65 Woodstock Street and pointed a handgun at Meade and forced the three of them inside. One of Meade’s friends was tied up with duct tape and blindfolded. The intruders kept on asking Meade “Where is the money? When Meade did not produce any money he was shot several times in the chest and abdomen. The 29 year old was pronounced dead shortly afterwards. Meade had been a drug dealer but the father of five had been in the process of turning his life around. To this date, his murderers still have not been brought to justice. If you any information about this crime please contact the Hartford Police Department at 860-543-8720.
Two Different Murders over 3 Decades Ago May Have a Common Link
On Nov. 26, 1980 someone got away with murder. That night around 11:30pm 54 year old Paul Harris said goodbye to his wife and planned to drive to his late shift job at Pratt & Whitney. As a Foreman, he was responsible for disciplining workers and even firing them. In the months preceding his death, he had his car vandalized. That cold night in November, he was ambushed as he was getting into his car and hit several times with a blunt instrument that was never identified. He most likely died after the first couple of blows and his pockets were searched, his Pratt & Whitney watch stolen and his 1967 Buick station wagon had been driven by the killer and abandoned a quarter of a mile away near a Route 2 underpass. Police believe that the killer waited for Harris at his Neipsic Road home in Glastonbury and carefully planned this crime. It is likely that Harris most likely knew his killer. Several suspects were looked at but one in particular, an individual that was fired by the murdered foreman.
If you have any information on the murder of Paul Harris, please contact the Glastonbury Police Department at (860) 633-8301.
St. Patricks Day of 1982 the partially naked body of Leslie St. Laurent was found off of an embankment on Route 2 in Glastonbury. She was found strangled near the Wassuc Road Exit, nearly three weeks after she had been reported missing. It is possible that she was murdered the day she went missing due to her being found in the same clothes she had last been seen in. Police do not believe that robbery or sexual assault were the reason for her homicide. However, an ex-boyfriend has been a person of interest in this case. The same person who has also been looked at for the murder of Paul Harris. If you have any information about this case please call the Connecticut State Police at 860-685-8190.
Unknown Hit and Run Driver Still Eludes Justice
On December 23, 1982, 15 year old Sherry Miller and her brother in law were walking along Route 101 in the town of Dayville, just miles from the Rhode Island border. Just before 9PM that night, She was fatally hit by an older model dark-colored pick-up-truck. The vehicle was described as having damage to the right front side it was also missing a mirror and a radio antennae. It has been 25 years since this hit and run driver has eluded justice and her family desperately wants to find the individual(s) responsible for her untimely death. If you have any information, please call the State Police at Troop D at 860-779-3900.
Still No Arrest in Slaying of Mother of Four
East Hartford Police have a major break in a decade old cold cases and are looking for additional information to solve the murder of a 27 year old mother of four children.
Sometime during the late hours of June 21, 2000 or early morning hours of June 22, 2000; Sherryann Harris was a victim of an unsolved homicide. While she was being murdered, her four young children were upstairs asleep in their home at 9 Wyllis Street. The bloody and naked body of Harris was found outside her home on the sidewalk by a passing neighbor.
Retired Lt. Curt Stoldt, who was the Public Information Officer for the East Hartford Police Department had this to say about developments in the case a few years ago.
“We know that there are people out there in the community who have information that could help solve this case. They may not realize how valuable their information is. We ask that they come forward and get that information to investigators. These people may be eligible for the reward and can help bring justice to this incident and a needed sense of closure to survivors.”
There is a 30,000 dollar reward for information leading to the capture of her killer. East Hartford Police have physical evidence that belongs to a person of interest in this case. Additional information is needed in order to make an arrest in this case. If you have any information about the murder of Sherryann Harris please call the East Hartford Police Department Criminal Investigations Division at (860)528-1496. You can also call the Crime Tip Line (860)289-9134. All callers can remain anonymous if they choose.
Answers Still Being Sought in Slaying of Woman
On September 20, 1986, Virginia Duclos Bruce was brutally murdered in Hamden, Connecticut. She was left dead in a trash receptacle off of Morse Street. She had been repeatedly stabbed. The then 28 year old mother of two had been seen hours earlier in the Highwood Bar and Grill not far from where she was found deceased. The State of Connecticut is offering a twenty thousand dollar reward for information leading to the conviction of those guilty of her murder. If you have any information please contact the Hamden Police Department at (203)230-4000. Her family is still devastated by this crime and want answers and justice.
Looking For Leads In 16 Year Old’s Murder
On June 1, 2004, 16 year old Jessica Rose Keyworth, was found strangle
d and found down stairs in an old abandoned house located at 23-25 Pearl St in Waterbury, CT. On May 30, she had taken a local train from Bridgeport, CT to Stratford, CT and then another train to Waterbury alone. She was supposed to meet friends at their house and then they were to all drive together back to Job Corps in Devens, Massachusetts. Police are trying to find out what happened in the 24 hours prior to her being found deceased. A picture of Jessica as well as a shirt she was last wearing are attached. Her family is filled with grief and are looking for answers. There is $50,000.00 reward being offered and you can contact the Waterbury Police Department at 203-574-6941 if you have vital information.
Who Killed this Mother of Three?
It was June 30, 1985, when some people fishing came across a brutal discovery. Right under the I-91 overpass near the Connecticut River, lay the 98 pound body of 29 year old Raquel Ramirez. The mother of three had been beaten and strangled. She had last been seen alive at the Amigo Cafe on Park Street in Hartford. Witnesses allege that she was involved in an argument with a man. She had been slapped and shoved into a car. At the time of her disappearance, she wore blue jeans, a blouse with a dragon print, and shoes.
The State of Connecticut is offering a $20,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for the homicide or Raquel Ramirez. Please contact the Hartford Police Department if you have any information at 860-757-4000.
Grandmother murdered in Botched Robbery, Suspect confirmed to be a deadly predator….
On the evening on June 9, 1979. Sixty year old grandmother Anthonina Raibikis was attacked at the driveway of the home of her daughter in the town of Wolcott. Moments earlier, she and her sister had just closed her package store in nearby Waterbury. As soon as she arrived at her daughter’s house at 545 Boundline Road, her sister was assaulted by an unknown male attacker. Her sister got away but was badly bruised. The unknown assailant then pointed a gun at the head of Raibikis (who was still in the vehicle) and fatally shot her. He then took her purse which contained several hundred dollars and fled. He was described as being a white male in his early twenties and around six feet tall.
At the time of the crime the police found cigarette butts at the scene. Twenty five years later DNA tests were run against saliva found on those cigarette butts. What Detectives found, shocked them. The DNA also matched that of a perpetrator of an still unsolved sexual assault in 1995 in the town of New Milford. To date this is the only unsolved homicide in the town of Wolcott. There is a twenty thousand dollar reward for information leading to the arrest of conviction of the persons involved in the murder of Raibikis. If you have any information about this case you are asked to call Wolcott Police at 203-879-7612. All calls can be confidential.
An Unexpected Visitor at a Court House and a Man Ends up DEAD.
Thirty-one year old Christopher Schmeller was reported missing by friends on September 30, 2002. On October 10, 2002 Tuesday morning about 10 feet down an embankment in a wooded area near the weigh station, his body was found. The Westerly Rhode Island Fisherman had died as a result of blunt trauma. The area was just off of Interstate 95 in Waterford, Connecticut and has had dead bodies left there before. The 1997 murder of 41 year old Rene Pellegrino was solved and Dickie Anderson was convicted in her murder. In April of 2002 the decomposed remains of 43 year old Philip Scaplen of Niantic was found and his death was never determined. There is no indication that Schmeller’s case is linked to the other bodies found in the same area. Police from both Connecticut and Rhode Island have worked on the case and have labeled Schmeller’s death as a homicide. A friend of his had reported that he was last seen at the Superior Court House in Wakefield and had been nervous about finding a ride home because of an individual he had feared was there at the time. The victim had in the past been arrested numerous times and has associated with a bad crowd.
If you have any information about the suspicious death of Christopher Schmeller please contact the Waterford Police Department at (860)442-9451 or the Westerly, Rhode Island Police Department at 401-596-2022.
Missing Wife and the Suspects Are No Secret To Everyone in Town….
Aug. 20, 1984, that was the last time anyone had ever heard from then 38-year-old Mary Badaracco. According to her husband Dominic, she had abruptly left their home in Sherman. He claimed she took a hundred thousand dollars in cash and assorted goods. Her personal belongings were gone with only her wedding ring and car keys left behind on the kitchen counter. One other unusual item was that the windshield of her car had been smashed. It’s been over twenty years and the whereabouts of this mother of two are still unknown. Dominic Badaracco has been named by Law Enforcement as a suspect in his wife’s disappearance. The case has been classified by the State Police as a homicide. It is known that a son of Dominic Badaracco has also had ties to different criminal organizations and he has been looked at as well. However, Dominic Badaracco has stated that he had nothing to do with her disappearance. There is a $50,000 reward offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for her disappearance and/or homicide.
June 28, 2013, Dominic Badaracco has been convicted of trying to bribe a Superior Court Judge to influence a Grand Jury Investigation into his former wife’s disappearance. He served a few years in prison but is now out. Still no word as to who killed Mary Badaracco or where her remains might be.
Who Killed Baby Victor?
The Fairfield Police Department call him “Victor”, but in reality they don’t know his name. The newborn was found murdered on March 14, 1986 in the Lake Mohegan land owned by the town of Fairfield. He had been suffocated and had his jaw broken. The body was found in such a way, that Police believe the killer(s) wanted it to be discovered. There was also evidence that the killing and burial may have been a ritual of somesort. The newborn was wrapped in a pair of adult pajamas. His body was surrounded by pieces of fruit, coins, food and other objects that suggested some sort of unusual religious custom. Fairfield Police believe it could be related to Santeria or a religion similar to it.
In 2011, Police announced a possible breakthrough in the case. There was evidence that a baby was born in a bathroom stall at an old a red brick building that housed a bank data-processing center located in the Kings Highway/Black Rock Turnpike traffic circle; hours before the discovery of Baby Victor’s body The building has since been torn down and was replaced by a Sym’s clothing store. Police believe that someone working there at the time may know who had given birth in the stall. It is possible that the baby was the one found dead in Lake Mohegan.
The State of Connecticut has a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrests of individuals involved in the unsolved murder of baby Victor. If you have any information please call the Detective Division at the Fairfield Police Department at 203-254-4840. All calls will be kept confidential. You can also leave a tip online at http://www.tipsoft.com.
A Planned Hit or a Robbery Gone Bad?
On February 10, 1990 Luis Gonzalez was working at his parent’s grocery store on 1160 State Street in Bridgeport Connecticut. At about 6:30pm, someone asked him to step out of the store to talk. He walked outside the store and was talking with three men. One of the men shot him in his chest once and all three ran away. Luis although shot in the chest was able to walk back inside the store. He climbed over the counter and dialed 911. His Mother who heard a shot came to his aid and drove him to Park City Hospital in Bridgeport. Luis walked inside the hospital and was attended to by staff. He was unfortunately pronounced dead a short time later.
If you have any information about this case you are urged to call (203)581-5201. The family of Luis Gonzalez is looking for justice. Maybe you can help them.
A Son Goes Missing, and a Love Triangle has People Questioning what happened.
Thirty One year old William Smolinski was last seen around 3:45 pm at his residence at 130 Holly Street on August 24, 2004. The Waterbury man was last seen by a neighbor and asked that person to watch his dog. Smolinski indicated that he was going to leave for a period of three days. That was the last time he was seen. He left behind personal belongings such as his vehicle and wallet. Billy’s family for the last two years have been actively looking for him and have placed fliers with his picture on them in the surrounding towns where he was last seen. There has been visual documentation of Billy’s ex-girlfriend ripping and vandalizing many of these posters. While she has not been named a suspect, she has filed a lawsuit against Smolinski family. She was allegedly involved in a relationship with a married politician from a nearby town. If you have information concerning this case, please contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation in New Haven at (203)777-6311. There is a fifteen thousand dollar reward.
Billie’s family early on the investigation was victimized by so-called psychics looking for money to find him.
A Fight Leaves a Man Dead
Fifty-one year old Mark Lewis had been no stranger to the state of Connecticut. For three years he lived in the comfortable suburb of Simsbury until he moved to Ohio in 1997. In September of 1999, during a three day business trip in Hartford, he took a late night stroll from the Sheraton Hotel at which he was staying. As he walked on Albany Avenue, an area known for drug sales and criminal activity, he got into a confrontation with a man and a woman near the corner of Chestnut Street. There was an escalation leading to Lewis being punched in the shoulder and falling to the sidewalk. He suffered a fatal brain hemmorhage shortly after hitting the ground. When paramedics found Lewis, his wallet and other valuables were still intact possibly ruling out robbery as a motive. A $35,000 dollar reward is being offered for the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible for this crime. It’s been over two years and his wife and two children want to see justice for their husband and father. If you any information about this crime please contact the Hartford Police Department at 860-543-8720.
Who was Baby Hope?
1988 was not a good year in Connecticut for abandoned babies. In 2020, the mystery of who left a baby boy to died in the freezing cold in Meriden in 1988, was solved when his mother (POS) was identified. Another baby was found in Meriden dead and the mother arrested. At the old Farmington Valley Mall in Simsbury, a baby girl was left in a dumpster. A man heard the cries of what he thought was a cat and came across the new born child. The biological mother of the little girl w(who survived) worked at the mall and was arrested. However, the case of Baby Girl Hope who was found dead in October of 1988 has yet to be resolved. Her remains were found in a knotted garbage bag by a fire station on Whitney Avenue in New Haven. Due to the decomposition of the body, her race and cause of death were never able to be determined. The only clue was a note that had written on it, “Please take care of her.” The little girl was buried in St. Bernard Cemetery in the city where she was found.
UPDATE: 32 years later, his mother was identified as then 25 year old Karen Kuzmak-Roche. She had called the fire department after giving birth asking them to look for something in the area where she had left her son. IT is unlikely that she will face criminal charges. Police are still trying to verify David’s biological father but indicate he may have nothing to do with his death.
If you have any information as to who Baby Hope Girl might be, contact the New Haven Police Department at (203) 946-6333.
Well Liked Former High School Student Killed Senselessly
Charles French was a twenty one year old man was shot to death in the Asylum Hill section of Hartford at 366 Laurel Street on November 15, 2011. He was walking home at 11:15 p.m. talking on the phone with a friend, when the friend on the other end heard him saying him saying “I don’t have anything leave me alone.” A scuffle ensued and then there was silence. French was shot in the back of the head. French was a hardworking young man who was not involved in any criminal wrongdoing. He was a victim of a robbery that went wrong. Police believe there may be more than one person involved and that several people witnessed the killing and many others know who is responsible.
If you have any information about this senseless murder, please call the Hartford Police Crimestoppers Tipline at 860-722-TIPS (8477).