Saturday, June 29, 2013

Discovered Remains May Be Woman Missing Since 1985

Poughkeepsie, NY - The Dutchess County Medical Examiner's office are examining what may be human remains discovered by contractors in a single-family home at 720 Vassar Road. The discovery may bring closure to a cold case of a woman reported missing in 1985.

JoAnn Nichols was reported missing by her husband, James Nichols Jr.,  just days before Christmas on December 21, 1985. He told police that his wife, a first-grade public school teacher, had missed a hair appointment at a local beauty salon. The next day, their car was found at the Nine Mall shopping plaza just around the corner from their home, less than a mile away. Nothing had been stolen, and there was no subsequent activity on credit cards or bank accounts.

Police ruled out the husband as a suspect, and considered the possibility the missing person may have committed suicide because of the loss of their only child. The couple had lost their 25 year-old son in a drowning accident, in May of 1982. A despondent note was found on the home computer at the time of the woman's disappearance. Police searched local waterways, even though they were frozen over, but discovered no clues.

The case quickly went as cold as that New York December. No new evidence ever turned up, but the case remained open and every year family members call the Town of Poughkeepsie Police Department to see if there are any new leads. Her mother, who lived in Louisiana, never heard from her daughter again even though JoAnn had called every Sunday between 2 and 4 p.m. up until her disappearance.

In December of 2012, concerned neighbors called police and reported that they hadn't seen James Nichols for several days. Police subsequently found that the 82-year old had died in his home, which was strewn with garbage and debris.

Last night around 5 p.m., contractors who were there cleaning out the house made the alarming discovery. They found a sealed container behind a false wall in the basement. Inside the container they found suspected human remains which had been there for "a considerable amount of time."

The Medical Examiner's Office will conduct their autopsy on Monday.

No comments:

Post a Comment