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  1. #1
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    Jan 2008
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    MI - Karen Oatley, 14, deaf, Lansing, 5 Aug 1979

    I grew up in Lansing Michigan. Around July of 74 or 75, our young neighbor, a deaf and mute 11-12 year old girl named Karen Oatley was murdered. Her body was found in the woods behind Garner Junior High School, less then 1/2 mile from her house. The police questioned all the neighborhood boys to no avail. This murder went cold and now I can't find a single item about it. Was it solved? My mother and I went to her funeral but I was young and don't know or don't recall any more details. I am hoping someone here can fill in the blanks. Thanks,
    Todd.
    Last edited by ToddK; 02-01-2008 at 08:45 AM. Reason: spelling

  2. #2
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    I can't seem to find anything about this case. The Michigan Attorney General did set up a Cold Case unit a few years ago - perhaps you can contact someone and find out if this was solved. Here are a couple links:

    http://www.michigan.gov/ag/0,1607,7-...4931--,00.html

    http://www.michigan.gov/msp/

  3. #3
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    Karen Oatley

    I have not been able to find any information about the death of Karen Oatley. It is possible that the case is one in the Jurisdiction of Lansing City Police or the Ingham County Sheriff.

    Here is a link to the Michigan State Police Official Website Cold Case section. Perhaps someone there could provide some answers...

    Michigan State Police Official Website

    LINK:

    http://www.michigan.gov/msp/0,1607,7...000---,00.html

  4. #4
    Snufamonbobball's Avatar
    Snufamonbobball is offline But O for the touch of the vanished hand & the sound of the voice that is still.
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    Google her name in the news archives and there are a few articles regarding the murder.

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...n+oatley&hl=en

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...n+oatley&hl=en

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...n+oatley&hl=en

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...n+oatley&hl=en

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?id...n+oatley&hl=en

    I don't have enough time today to dig any deeper than the first few articles, but one of the articles says they gave a man a polygraph regarding the case. I didn't see anything off hand that said the murder was solved.
    The more I get to know some people, the more I like my cats!

  5. #5
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    A few facts...

    Snufamonbobball, Thanks for the links. They were helpful. Here are a few facts that I was able to pull out of one of the articles:

    Karen Lynn Oatley, age 14, was abducted and murdered in Lansing, Michigan on Sunday, 5 August 1979.

    Her body was found in woods near her home on the City's south side.

    The first link you list has an article about another girl who was abducted and still missing as of its writing. The article mentions that there were three abductions in three days in Michigan, Karen's being one of them. Not certain if any of those abductions/murders were ever solved.

  6. #6
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    May 2011
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    Karen Oatley

    Quote Originally Posted by ToddK View Post
    I grew up in Lansing Michigan. Around July of 74 or 75, our young neighbor, a deaf and mute 11-12 year old girl named Karen Oatley was murdered. Her body was found in the woods behind Garner Junior High School, less then 1/2 mile from her house. The police questioned all the neighborhood boys to no avail. This murder went cold and now I can't find a single item about it. Was it solved? My mother and I went to her funeral but I was young and don't know or don't recall any more details. I am hoping someone here can fill in the blanks. Thanks,
    Todd.


    Todd, my name is Lorie Miller, I was Lorie Peterson, lived on Washington Ave. and was a neighbor and very good friend of Karen's. You can contact me and I will tell you what I know, maybe. Are you still in Michigan? I'm now living in Texas. BTW she was not a deaf mute, she was born deaf but thru the years she began hearing without the help of hearing aids.

  7. #7
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    Jul 2011
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    karen oatley

    I too went to school at gardner with karen....it still bothers me that this never got solved especailly now that i have a 14yr old....anyone hear any updates?

  8. #8
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    Sep 2010
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    To those who have been wondering about Karen Oately who was murdered back in the 70's, I too have been wondering if that crime was ever solved. My mother was a teacher at Gardner Junior High when this happened therefore I too was aware and upset about this case. Earlier this year I contacted a Sergeant with the Lansing Police Department he told me that this crime was never solved. A number of months later I called the sergeant again and there were some new leads in the case! Of course he could not share any details of an open investigation but as I haven't talked to him in awhile I will call him again to see if it has been solved.

  9. #9
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    http://www.lansingstatejournal.com/i...-old-homicides

    On a warm summer evening in 1979, Karen Oatley went for a ride on her 10-speed bike. The 14-year-old, who was born almost deaf and wore a hearing aid, never came home. Her body was found a day later in a wooded area near what was then Gardner Junior High School. It was only a few blocks from her house. She had been strangled and her throat was slashed.

    Nearly 35 years later, her parents, Lee and Sandra Oatley, still don’t know who killed her. Or why. The case is one of 63 unsolved homicides in Lansing between 1963 and 2012, according to police records. A case is typically designated “cold” after one year if no charges are filed...

    Last year, at the urging of Mayor Virg Bernero, the department assigned a detective to handle cold cases. It’s the first time the department has done that. The goal, said Police Chief Mike Yankowksi, is to “bring peace to the families and friends of those tragically killed.”

  10. #10
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    The case is still open/unsolved.

    Lansing State Journal

    Nearly 35 years later, her parents, Lee and Sandra Oatley, still don't know who killed her. Or why. The case is one of 63 unsolved homicides in Lansing between 1963 and 2012, according to police records. A case is typically designated "cold" after one year if no charges are filed.
    The not knowing, Lee Oatley said, is "like having a bamboo shoot under your fingernails."
    "You live with it every single day," Oatley said in a telephone interview from Ft. Myers, Fla., where he and his wife now live. "There's always something that will come up during the course of a day that will remind you of it."
    "Of course we pray a lot," he added. A resolution is "one of the first things we pray for."


  11. #11
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    Aug 2016
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    One of the most heartbreaking as well as frustrating things about these old cases like this one is that there's so little information to be found. Even if you are "on site" so to speak, there's still so little information. What information can be found is often confusing and conflicting, to top it off.

    Thank you for remembering her, thinking about her, and bringing her up and not letting her memory pass away.

  12. #12
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    Oct 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    Snufamonbobball, Thanks for the links. They were helpful. Here are a few facts that I was able to pull out of one of the articles:

    Karen Lynn Oatley, age 14, was abducted and murdered in Lansing, Michigan on Sunday, 5 August 1979.

    Her body was found in woods near her home on the City's south side.

    The first link you list has an article about another girl who was abducted and still missing as of its writing. The article mentions that there were three abductions in three days in Michigan, Karen's being one of them. Not certain if any of those abductions/murders were ever solved.
    Hi. I just want to let some people know that there is not much information on my aunt's case. We don't know who did it and nothing new has been learned since. I hope maybe one day a miracle will happen and my grandparents will have some closure.
    Thanks.

  13. #13
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    Mar 2017
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    Lansing Mi
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    I live in Lansing and this story saddened me to learn it was never solved?

    Does anyone know the following:


    1.Was there sexual assault?

    2. Why was her abduction initially considered a possible run-away? As in was there issues inside the family?
    3. Why was she outside that day and who was she with?
    4. Was the bicycle ever reviewed for evidence?
    5. Did she have a boyfriend or a crush on someone?

    6. Had she been bullied?
    7. Why were only boys interviewed? What girls were interviewed (articles indicated boys)
    8. I am a little confused on how she died, but if there was an object used was that object found? I ask because recent psychological research on strangulation indicates there is a 75% chance of familiar relationships, however most of the investigative information is related to outside the family? *My sincerest apology for the pain that question may impose on the family members. (http://eknygos.lsmuni.lt/springer/605/73-87.pdf)
    9. What family members were at the home that weekend?
    10.Were there any suspects?

    11.The association from the report inferred that she vanished while riding her bike? Was the area were her body was found, a hang out area for other kids?

    Thank you,
    Last edited by awolf; 03-08-2017 at 01:13 PM. Reason: Found Updated information



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