The Most Notorious Unsolved Cases In Each State
Across the US, there are serial killers who have never been caught and missing people who have never been found.
Some cold cases are finally solved after decades of meticulous detective work, while others remain a mystery.
Here are 50 famous mysteries that have remained unsolved.
Editor’s Note: Warning that these accounts may be upsetting to some as they describe details of real-life cases.
ALABAMA: Sherry Lynn Marler went missing from Greenville in 1984.
On June 6, 1984, 12-year-old Greenville native Sherry Lynn Marler went into town with her stepfather to run errands. While he went to the bank to sign some papers, he gave her a dollar to buy a soda from a vending machine and told her to meet him back at his truck in 15 minutes. She hasn’t been seen since.
“That’s when our nightmare started 30 and a half years ago,” Marler’s mother, Betty Stringfellow, told the Montgomery Advertiser in 2015.
Marler’s disappearance was featured
on the TV show “Unsolved Mysteries.”
ALASKA: Passengers on the fishing boat Investor were killed in Craig in 1982.
Eight people, including a man, his pregnant wife, their two children, and teenage deckhands, were shot to death aboard a fishing boat called the Investor on September 6, 1982, People Magazine reported. The killer is then believed to have returned to the scene the next afternoon to set the boat on fire.
It was the biggest mass murder in Alaskan history and rocked the small fishing town of Craig, where it took place.
The case was featured on People
Magazine Investigates on Inves
tigation Discovery, and is the subject of the true crime book “What Happened in Craig: Alaska’s Worst Unsolved Mass Murder.”
ARIZONA: Pauline Robbin Burgett was fatally stabbed in 1978.
On March 12, 1978, Chad Burgett re
turned home to Phoenix after a weekend away with his mother to find his sister, Pauline Robbin, murdered with multiple stab wounds.
Police think that whoever killed the 16-year-old knew her. They have DNA evidence but no source for it yet, according to Fox 10 Phoenix.
ARKANSAS: Morgan Nick disappeared from an Alma ballpark in 1995.
Six-year-old Morgan Nick was last seen on June 9, 1995 at a ballpark in Alma, Arkansas, according to 5 News. An unidentified man in a red truck who was seen driving away around the same time Nick disappeared was deemed a suspect, but after countless leads, authorities are no closer to finding her.
Nick’s family founded the Morgan Nick Foundat
ion to provide immediate assistance to families of missing children. The Arkansas alert system is also named in honor of Nick.
Nancy Grace featured the cold case in 2010, and the family received a new home on “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” in 2012.
CALIFORNIA: The “Zodiac Killer” infamously terrorized California.
The “Zodiac Killer” has been connected to fiv
e murders and two attempted murders between the 1960s and the 1970s, but has claimed responsibility for at least 37, sending coded me
ssages to newspapers describing killing people.
The “Zodiac Killer” has been the subject of several movies, including “Zodiac” and “Dirty Harry,” which was inspired by the still-open case.
COLORADO: 6-year-old pageant queen JonBenét Ramsey was found dead in her family’s home in Boulder in 1996.
JonBenét Ramsey was found dead in the basement of her family’s home on December 26, 1996. There were cords around her right wrist and neck and she was wearing her favorite pageant nightgown, according to Vanity Fair. Her parents also discovered a ransom note asking for $118,000, according to CNN.
Her parents, John and Patsy Ramsey, were suspects in the case, but DNA evidence processed from JonBenét’s underwear in 2003 indicated the involvement of two unrelated people. A man named John Mark Karr confessed to the murder in 2006, but it was ruled to be false since he couldn’t provide any additional details and his DNA didn’t match what was discovered at the scene. The case remains active.
CONNECTICUT: Mary Badaracco disappeared from Sherman in 1984 under suspicious circumstances.
Mary Badaracco disappeared on August 19, 1984. Her car was left parked in the driveway with the driver’s side smashed in, and her wedding ring and car keys were left on the kitchen counter, according to the Hartford Courant.
Her husband Dominic told authorities that they had been planning to divorce and that Mary took off with $100,000 in exchange for their home.
But no evidence of the money has ever been found, and Dominic didn’t report her missing. A tip in 1985 alleged that Mary’s death was a hit by Hell’s Angels, but the case is still cold.
DELAWARE: Jane Marie Prichard was found dead in Blackbird State Forest in 1986.
Prichard was pursuing a master’s degree in botany at the University of Maryland, and visited Blackbird State Forest many times for her research, according to Delaware Online. But on September 19, 1986, her deta
iled notes stopped around 10 a.m. She was found the next day partially clothed and dead from a shot to the back.
While the forest is popular with hunters, her death was ruled a homicide. A squirrel hunter was taken into custody and questioned, but DNA evidence exonerated him in 1987.
A new cold case unit at the New Castle County Police Department began reexamining the case in 2015, but there are no new developments.
FLORIDA: A triple murder in Tallahassee is still unsolved more than 50 years later.
Robert and Helen Sims and their daughter Joy were found bound, gagged, stabbed, and shot in their Tallahassee home on October 22, 1966, WCTV reports. More than 50 years later, police still don’t know who did it.
The murders have been the subject of a documentary called “641 Muriel Court” and various podcasts.