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  1. #1
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    NY - Christine Diefenbach, 13, Queens, 7 Feb 1988

    On or about July, 1982, 13 year old Antonella Mattina left her Flushing home to bring a deposit to a Citibank for her father's business. She never came back. Several years later her body was found on an off side lot on the Taconic Parkway.

    Feb, 1988 - 13 yr old Christine Deifenbach left her home in Richmond Hill, NY to get a newspaper at Jamaica Avenue and Lefferts Blvd. She never returned. Her body was found later in a lot adjacent to the LIRR tracks.

    Anyone with information on these unsolved murders?

  2. #2
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  3. #3
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    As of 2006, Christine's was still unsolved. One article I found said she was stomped to death while resisting a rape. Sigh.

  4. #4
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    Here's a picture of Christine. I noted something that adds to the sadness. Only Christine's father is listed on her headstone. No mom.


    http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg...r&GRid=2657574

    Christine was killed in a year when homicide was at a peak in NYC.

    Homicides Hit a Record in New York
    The New York Times
    By RALPH BLUMENTHAL
    Published: December 26, 1988

    The year was one of notorious homicides, beginning on Jan. 24 with the so-called karate-kick killing of 24-year-old Daniel Klagsbrun by Robert Wallace, a 20-year-old stagehand who contended that Mr. Klagsbrun insulted him in a bar. Mr. Wallace was convicted of the slaying.
    In February, 14-year-old Christine Ann Diefenbach of Queens was found bludgeoned to death after going out to buy a newspaper.
    http://www.nytimes.com/1988/12/26/ny...ted=all&src=pm
    Last edited by bessie; 09-09-2013 at 04:57 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Richmond Hill 1988

    Hi,
    I was a kid in Richmond Hill during the 1980's, so I will provide some background on the area.

    Basically, it was a nice area until the mid-80's. My parents sheltered me from this news. I had not heard about Antonella's or Christine's murders until now. I was aware of other news issues on the local, national, and global scales. For example, I remember knowing about the murder of Jennifer Levin, the abuse and death of Lisa Steinberg, John Gotti, plane crashes, earth quakes, Chernobyl. But, my parents never mentioned either Antonella or Christine.

    In January 1988, when Christine was murdered, my parents bought a house in the suburbs. We were going to move as soon as school let out in June. My grandparents, also in Richmond Hill, were moving to the suburbs, too. My parents knew the neighborhood was changing. That's all the would tell me.

    There were sketchy people- maybe the crack heads mentioned in news articles-loitering in the area. I never played outside w/o supervision. Playdates happened indoors, either in friends' homes or bowling alleys, arts and crafts stores, etc.

    I remember one night in June 1988, my mother and I attended a Girl Scout bridging ceremony at the local church. The church was two blocks from home. My father was going to pick us up by car, but got stuck at work. So my mother and I walked home as fast as we could. I remember she told me to stay with her, keep my head up, and be very alert. I could tell she was nervous to walk two blocks. I thought she was overreacting at the time, but now, I'm understanding how a woman with an 8 year old girl could be targets for some very sketchy people.

    I'll post on 1982 (Antonella's disappearance) later.


  6. #6
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    Oh, I do hope you'll post more, annegrete. I'd love to hear more of your thoughts.
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  7. #7
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    more on Richmond Hill 1988

    Before I get to 1982, I will talk a little bit more about 1988.

    First, I remember sometime in the 1987- 1988 school year, on a week night, there were cop cars across the street from our house. The cops cars had the lights on, but no sound. We had a picture window in our living room. My mother told me not to go near the living room window, not to watch TV or play in the living room. She told me to sit on the floor in the dining room and play with my dolls. She explained that she didn't know what was going on across the street, even though all the families on that side of the street seemed fine, it was better to be safe. She said it in a way that made me feel alert, but not scared.

    Second, when my class was taking a field trip to the Globe from the Worlds Fair, my mom re-briefed me on "stranger danger". She told me not to respond to any man who might call me over.

  8. #8
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    Richmond Hill 1982-ish

    The one thing that happened in the early 80's, before 1982, was that my mother's house was broken into. I have no memory of this at all, so I'm thinking this happened any time between 1980- 1981. She had African violets on the kitchen windowsill, so I'm thinking it must have been the spring or summer, but I don't know the growing season for African violets.

    Anyway, at least two local teens from the neighborhood broke into our house during a week day. They went in through the basement windows. I remember my mom recounting that she grabbed me when she saw them. I don't know the rest of the details, but they somehow made it up to the second floor where her bedroom was. They stole her costume jewelry. I remember she mentioned they took a ring with a crescent moon set in black onyx. I guess she was wearing her wedding band, but if it was during the day, she might have taken it off. (I remember watching her put in her rings AFTER she had done the morning cleaning.) Anyway, as I just said, these kids TOOK ONLY HER COSTUME JEWELRY!!!!

    I am not sure if she stayed in the house during the robbery or left through the front or back door. What I do know is that when she saw them and grabbed me, she told them, "You DO NOT touch her [me]."

    She filed a police report, the kids went to court, and one of the kid's girlfriends would always wear the ring her boyfriend took from my mother.

    A couple things I think helped was that my mother DID NOT tell them where anything was. She let them figure it out on their own. Aside from telling them they were not to touch me, she kept quiet. (I have read that, especially when you've got a baby, if you're being robbed, jacked, etc., you do not tell them they can have whatever they want. If they ask you for a specific item, hand it over. The main thing is to let them know you have a kid and that kid is the only thing you care about.)

    My mother never wanted to replace any of the jewelry that was stolen. She also never wanted any of it back. She would never again keep African violets. Too many bad memories.


    The second thing I remember is, on a summer week day, probably around 10 or 11, we were going to walk over to my grandmother's house a block away. We were literally a few steps out the door when my mother noticed a knife stuck between boards of siding. We went back in and called the police. I'm not sure when this happened, but any summer between 1982 - 1987, but probably 1983 or 1984.



    So yeah, slowly but surely, the creepiest, scummiest, sketchiest people began to infiltrate a very nice area. As one of the articles on Christine's death mentions, Richmond Hill was a neighborhood of one and two-family homes with nice neat lawns. There's a NYT article talking about grief in a "blue collar world", which comes off as pejorative, IMHO. They were families w/ fathers who had union jobs, owned small businesses, etc. Mothers stayed home or worked as nurses, secretaries, or receptionists.

    Whenever I would ask my mother why we moved to the burbs, she said, "We had to. The neighborhood changed."

  9. #9
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    maybe b/c her Dad was military only he can be put on the head stone?
    The greatest trick the Devil ever played was convincing the world he didn't exist.

    Three candles that illume every darkness: truth, nature, knowledge.


    "There, isn't this a beautiful piece of cloth!", exclaimed the swindlers, as they described the lovely design that didn't exist.

    Roll down the windows and turn up the music !!!!!!!

  10. #10
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    did Christine make it to the news stand to get the paper?? was that a usual thing for her to do?? poor girl may have been targeted--would have only had a dollars worth of change on her I'd think so not really robbery as motive
    The greatest trick the Devil ever played was convincing the world he didn't exist.

    Three candles that illume every darkness: truth, nature, knowledge.


    "There, isn't this a beautiful piece of cloth!", exclaimed the swindlers, as they described the lovely design that didn't exist.

    Roll down the windows and turn up the music !!!!!!!

  11. #11
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    Considering how quickly Christine's body was found, and the extensive brutal beating she suffered, I'd think this might be a good prospect for a DNA resolution. I hope evidence was preserved. That's IF NYPD is still working cold cases. Doesn't sound like it, unless things have changed since 2007.

    http://nymag.com/news/intelligencer/23501/

    (Always the railroad tracks. I'm going to start tagging threads where bodies are found near rr tracks, like I've been doing with shopping center/mall abductions and murders.)

    ETA: Apparently she did not make it to the newsstand because the dollar was found with her body.

    ''I understand now that the money she had on her was not taken,'' he said. ''She only had a dollar. She was going for the newspaper.''

    http://www.nytimes.com/1988/02/09/ny...-to-death.html
    Last edited by bessie; 01-19-2015 at 06:59 AM.
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  12. #12
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    I just came to this thread because I found her name on Antonella Mattina's thread.. I have lived my entire life in Queens and never heard of this case?!
    I came upon a couple of other links on Christine
    http://www.echonyc.com/~horn/stacy/?p=435
    http://www.sfgate.com/books/article/...rs-2656513.php

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.co...&ct=clnk&gl=us
    Sadly and tragically, Cheryl Mcarthy who was murdered on 12/23/69 at the old Metropolitan Ave train station is still not solved. Christine Diefenbach who was only 14 years old was brutally raped and murdered on 2/9/88 by 121st street and 89th Ave by the LIRR railroad overpass is also another cold case.
    These are 2 of the darkest days in the history of Richmond Hill and should never be forgotten.
    Added: March 29, 2012

  13. #13
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    https://www.nbcnewyork.com/investiga...468352333.html
    January 8 2018
    New evidence has been discovered in the cold case investigation of the murder of a young Queens teenage girl in Feburary 1988, NYPD officials tell News 4's I-Team.

    NYPD officials say the evidence into 14-year-old Christine Diefenbach's killing in Richmond Hill is being examined, but would not identify exactly what it is.

    Despite the recent discoveries in the case, detectives are still hoping someone steps forward and calls the NYPD Crime Stoppers tip line with information that could lead to the arrest of a suspect.
    When Christine left her house, police believe she used the shortcut. Instead of sticking to the sidewalks, Christine cut diagonally from 89th Avenue to Lefferts Boulevard along the railroad
    .


    According to police, she barely made it past the staircase that led from the sidewalk to the railroad tracks.
    Wray says that while on the Cold Case Squad and digging through Christine’s case files, he happened across a tip from 1989. It was an anonymous call that came from a nearby bar called Glenn’s Tavern.

    “The caller named a person he knew as 'Cherokee' and said that he had a conversation with this person in the bar approximately a year after the homicide,” said Wray.
    “As we sit here today, the suspects in my opinion, would be the two suspects that were identified by Detective Wray,” said Roberts.

    “That would be Cherokee and his friend.”

    Roberts also looked at the information provided by the anonymous tipster that called Glenn’s. To the detective, it’s simple math. The call came from Glenn’s. The caller said Cherokee was at Glenn’s and the bar’s patrons commonly used the railroad tracks where Christine’s body was found
    Police hope the recently discovered evidence and modern science will help provide new leads in a matter of months
    rbbm.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by dotr View Post
    Very encouraging news. It sounds from the news that they've sent away some evidence for re-testing. They tried DNA testing of the suspects back in the 90s but results were inconclusive. Hopefully, they'll get better results this time.
    All statements are my opinion only.

  15. #15
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    Could Altemio Sanchez (Bike Path Rapist) have been involved with Christine's death?

    This sounds a lot like his M.O., though there's quite a distance between Queens and Buffalo

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altemio_Sanchez
    Last edited by stereot; 01-12-2018 at 08:46 PM.



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