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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005

    CA - Tara Lossett Cossey, 12, San Pablo, 6 June 1979


    Tara Cossett Cossey
    Missing since June 6, 1979 from San Pablo, Contra Costa County, California
    Classification: Endangered Missing

    Vital Statistics
    • Date Of Birth: August 24, 1966
    • Age at Time of Disappearance: 12 years old
    • Height and Weight at Time of Disappearance: 4'11; 65 lbs.
    • Distinguishing Characteristics: Native female. Black hair; brown eyes. Dark complexion.
    • Clothing: Cutoff Levi's jeans, a blue tank top and thong sandals.
    • Dentals: Not available

    Circumstances of Disappearance
    Cossey was last seen in San Pablo, California on June 6, 1979. She was walking to Pirelli's Liquor Store to purchase a bag of sugar for her mother at the time of her disappearance. Cossey never returned to her family's residence and has not been heard from again.
    Authorities announced that a suspect had a possible connection to Cossey's case, as well as the disappearances of Michaela Garecht, Ilene Misheloff, Amber Swartz-Garcia and Amanda Campbell.
    Last edited by SheWhoMustNotBeNamed; 05-02-2010 at 06:34 PM. Reason: updated doe network link

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    Connected Cases?

    The first post in this thread indicated that:
    >>Authorities announced that a suspect had a possible connection to Cossey's case, as well as the disappearances of Michaela Garecht, Ilene Misheloff, Amber Swartz-Garcia and Amanda Campbell. <<

    There is no further amplification, but below is a little more information on those cases that are supposedly related to Tara's 1979 Disappearance:

    Amber Jean Swartz-Garcia, 8, Pinole, CA Missing 3 June 1988

    Michaela Joy Garecht, 9, Hayward, CA Missing 19 November 1988

    Ilene Misheloff, 13, Dublin, CA Missing 30 January 1989

    Amanda Nicole "Nikki" Campbell, 4, Fairfield, CA Missing 27 December 1991

    In the case of Michaela, there is a sketch of a man believed to be her abductor. But the suspect that is referred to would have to be a guy named Tim Bindner.

    Tim Bindner (born about 1953), a former cemetery worker and crematorium operator would visit graveyards four or five evenings a week. In 1986, this Berkeley Graduate lost his job at the Social Security Administration because he was (by his own admission) sending unsolicited gifts of money and birthday cards to some girls in Colorado whose names he got from their Social Security files. More on him later...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    I have a book about the missing girls' cases and Tim Bindner's connection to them, and Tara Cossey isn't even mentioned. All the other girls were Caucasian and, except Ilene, fair. The book said Ilene's case probably wasn't connected to the others because she was a teenager and the others only children -- Nikki Campbell was just 4.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    Tara Lossett Cossey, 12, Missing Since 6 June 1979 from San Pablo, CA

    Tara Lossett Cossey Missing Since: June 6, 1979 from San Pablo, California
    Classification: Endangered Missing

    Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

    Date Of Birth: August 24, 1966
    Age: 12 years old
    Height and Weight: 4'11, 65 pounds
    Distinguishing Characteristics: Native American female. Black hair, brown eyes. Some agencies may spell Cossey's middle name "Cossette."
    Clothing/Jewelry Description: A blue tank top, cutoff Levi's jeans and thong sandals.

    Details of Disappearance

    Cossey was last seen in San Pablo, California on June 6, 1979. She walked to Pirelli's Liquor Store to purchase a bag of sugar for her mother during the day. Cossey was last seen inside the Montalvin Shopping Center. She never returned to her family's residence and has not been heard from again.

    Some agencies may list June 10, 1979 as the date of Cossey's
    disappearance. Her age is occasionally listed as 11 years old.

    Authorities announced that Timothy Bindner had a possible
    connection to Cossey's case, as well as the disappearances of Michaela Garecht, Ilene Misheloff, Amber Swartz-Garcia and Amanda Campbell.

    A photo of Bindner is posted below this case summary. He
    maintains his innocence and successfully sued Campbell's hometown of Fairfield, California in 1997 for defamation of character. Bindner, a married sewage treatment plant worker, came to authorities' attention after he began sending birthday greetings to young girls in the East Bay area.

    One child's parents contacted authorities and handed over a letter
    Bindner had written to their daughter. The note was printed backwards and could only be deciphered by holding it up to a mirror. Bindner claimed he sent the cards as a kind gesture because the girls were "lonely."

    Bindner also visited the Oakmont Cemetery gravesite of Angela
    Bugay, a five-year-old girl girl who was abducted and murdered in Antioch, California in 1983.

    Bindner was never considered a suspect in her murder and another man has since been arrested in that case. Bindner approached many of the mothers of missing girls from the East Bay area offering his assistance, including Amber and Garecht's families. He introduced himself to Kim three days after Amber vanished.

    Investigators asked her to maintain a quasi-friendship with Bindner in hope of learning if he was connected to any of the girls' cases. She and authorities agreed that Bindner appeared to playing mind games with victims' loved ones and law enforcement.

    Many people theorize that he enjoyed taunting families into thinking
    that he may have been involved in the presumed abductions. He was once arrested for annoying two little girls whom he was trying to lure into his van, but the charges were later dropped.

    Bindner often drove around in a light blue Dodge van with a license
    plate that said "Lov You." Inside the van was wallpapered with many pictures of children. A photograph of the van is posted at the link below this case summary.

    Bindner refers to himself as a "good Samaritan." He asked Linda Golston, a reporter for The San Jose Mercury News, to interview him at Oakmont Cemetery at 4:30 a.m. He played his favorite song on her car stereo, "Jesus, Here's Another Child To Hold."

    Bindner told Goldston that he thought of the missing girls as "his
    children." She asked him how he believed the abductions occurred and he said one child was submissive, but another fought back against her assailant. Bindner added that he was "guessing" about the girls' reactions.

    Bindner wrote a letter to a law enforcement agency in the late 1980s, stating that he believed the next girl who would be abducted from the area would be nine years old. Garecht disappeared shortly thereafter; she was nine at the time of her abduction.

    Bindner also sent a holiday card to a profiler for the Federal Bureau
    Of Investigation (FBI) in 1990. The card depicted an image of a young girl holding up four fingers. Campbell vanished in 1991 at the age of four. Search dogs traced Campbell and Swartz-Garcia's scent to Bugay's grave. Authorities never had enough evidence to prove Bindner was connected to their cases, although he was known for visiting the cemetery on occasion.

    Bindner was given a heroism award by the California State Patrol after assisting victims in the 1989 San Francisco earthquake. He has never been charged in any of the cases. Cossey's disappearance remains unsolved.

    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Contra Costa County Sheriff's Department

    Source Information

    California Attorney General's Office
    ABC News
    The North County Times
    The San Francisco Chronicle
    Amber Foundation For Missing Children
    The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children
    The Charley Project: Tara Lossett Cossey


    Last edited by KateB; 04-05-2015 at 02:43 AM. Reason: repair url tag.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    LINK to old Websleuths thread...

    I guess there was an old thread on Tara, but it has not been posted to in a long time. Middle name spelled differently. Here is a link to it:

    Tara Cossey, missing since 1979 - Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community



    Also, here is an updated link to the Doenetwork file on her:


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Here's a link to an article about a book that an FBI profiler wrote about Bindner:

    I found the suggestion he made about the method of burying the girls' bodies in graves that would be used the next day very interesting, especially considering the fact that he worked in graveyards.

    I wonder if ground-penetrating radar is specific enough to be able to tell whether anything is buried under a grave? I found this website: www.geomodel.com - that talks about using it to identify actual grave sites because of the cavity that would exist where a coffin was buried, but I wonder if a similar cavity would show up under the coffin if bones with no enclosure were buried there.

    I can't believe the guy was able to sue the city and win!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    30 years have passed...

    This unsolved case is 30 years old and Tara is still missing.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Bumping up.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    bumping case up...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Redding, CA
    I grew up in the community (Montalvin Manner) where this happened. I was six at the time, but Tara still frequently comes up in discussions with people who lived there at the time. She is not forgotten.

    One detail I have heard but I have not seen published so I do not know if it is true, the police apparently found the bag of sugar that she had purchased before the kidnapping.

    With respect to Bindner, I think he is a sick man who may have been involved in other kidnappings or at least knew people involved, but I do not think he was involved in this one.

    It is my prayer that whoever did this is caught, that someone who knows something will finally come forward.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Livermore california
    If anything Binder is only 1 step above a child murderer in the sense that he played with people and interjected himself into the investigations. I loath the man but that is My own opinion.

    His comments about the graveyard are about as sick as they come and makes you think "what kind of animal would think of that?"

    He took resources away from the investigation and for that alone I think he should have done 20 years at Pelican bay!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Illinois/St. Louis
    for Tara, missing 34 years this month. She would be turning 47 this August.


    Tara was last seen in San Pablo, California on June 6, 1979. She walked to Pirelli's Liquor Store to purchase a bag of sugar for her mother during the day. Tara was last seen inside the Montalvin Shopping Center. She never returned to her family's residence and has not been heard from again.
    Here a , there a , everywhere a

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    Bumping for Tara.

    I wonder if she is related to any of the Bay Area girls and their disappearances (Michaela, Ilene, Amanda and Amber). She is often left out of discussion with these girls (I think it's not so much to do with race or age but maybe the time? She went missing in 1979 and the others girls went missing between 1988-1991. That's 9 years between them), but I think it has to be related to at least one of them. Makes me wonder if there was/is some kind of Ariel Castro in California at the time.

    I hope police are still working on her case and she is brought home one day.
    Last edited by hoshizora; 11-13-2013 at 12:58 PM. Reason: I can't spell

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    The book "Stalemate" by John Philpin discusses the Binder links to the other four cases but not the Tara Cossey case. There was some circumstantial evidence that linked Bindner to the Michaela Garecht case (he was in Hayward the day she was abducted) and the Amanda Campbell case (there was a connection between Bindner and Amanda's neighborhood) and Amber Swartz's mother thought Bindner's interest in Amber was "creepy" but there was no forensic evidence against him and he was rather thoroughly investigated and nothing was found. (there was really nothing linking him to the Ilene Misheloff case except the time frame).

    In the end, it is a sitution where Bindner can't be ruled in and and can't be ruled out; hence a Stalemate.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Today marks 35 years since Tara Cossey was abducted as she was walking to the store to purchase a bag of sugar for her mother. Sadly, I could not find any anniversary articles on her.
    I found an older article about her disappearance by ABC news featured with the disappearance of Amber Swartz-Garcia and Angela Bugay, who was found murdered.

    Please don't forget about Tara.
    Have You Seen Me?
    Deanie Marie Pyle Peters
    Mary Jo Lee Long
    Leanna "Beaner" Warner
    Jodi Huisentruit
    Amy Billig
    Rachael Garden
    Stacie Madison and Susan Smalley
    The Springfield Three
    Fawn & Rozlin Abell
    The Forth Worth Trio
    Rachel Mellon Skemp

    Where is Sharon Rose Sons?
    Discuss her case here: http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...aron+rose+sons

    "We lose our keys, we lose our glasses..but how, in America, do we lose our children?!"-Molly Bish's Mother
    **All posts are my opinion.**

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