Found Deceased FL - Madeline Soto, 13, Missing Child Alert, 13500 blk Town Loop Blvd, Orlando, 26 Feb 2024 *arrest* #9

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You know, your post made me consider a possibility. But I don't like that you're making me think like SS would. lol :p

Perhaps he used his dad's car (because we already know he's not very savvy about cameras catching his every move) thinking he'd transport her to the dumping site, then return his dad's car to him, thinking LE would never know about that, and when they did check out his car with a cadaver dog, no hit would be made because it was the wrong car.
And maybe this is also why he was out driving around in Jenn's car in the middle of the night--i.e. "You'd have to ask HER is WE went anywhere...."

He was thinking ahead....LE might suspect me of something, so they're watching the vehicle I drove, but Jenn was at the doctor. She was sleeping in. She went to pick up Maddie like a good mom. Her car is "safe".

Such a "BLEEEEEP"
 
Why hasn't JS been charged with anything yet?
She lied to investigators at the very least.
I'm just so beyond shocked a Mom would let her daughter sleep with her stepfather in another room. C'mon now.
Encouraged it even!
5 yrs he was able to abuse Maddie because JS allowed this man access. Smh.
he had alot of titles, stepfather, which he never was, partner, BF. and at the time he returned the nite of her birthday, it seems like he was none of those anymore.

IMO, she told investigators about the sleeping arrangements only because there were possible witnesses (roomies). and still thought the explanation was just fine, her need for absolute uninterrupted sleep. LE said she was 'visibly upset' seeing those SA images and denied she recognized SS, her daughter and the location....some say oh, she was in shock...me, no, I think a different type of shock.

I go back to the media interview telling the public she is 'missing'. Madeline's day, according to her 'we' account began in the car. not in the home, not getting dressed, nothing about 'their' morning together. she could have stated, jeez I slept in, my 'partner' got her ready for school and they left early without waking me. my partner said she was wearing x. and then push him in front of the zoom camera to give the account. instead, he shows up in the other interview where she is shaking all over the place. but his was the same rehearsed story.

there are numerous differences of opinion as to why she would lie. but go back and try to consider this normal, I cant: her daughter is missing and she's on camera soothing HIM. that alone was IMO shocking in that moment and obvious to me at that time, she was shielding him from suspicion. finding out about the SA after those media interviews, I cant help but question her behaviour in that moment on camera and why she presented a united front for an event she had no knowledge of, or did she?
 
View attachment 510812
In photo 8 from zillow, you can see a phone tripod, the dog, and a fedora hanging on the wall that looks similar to one SS was seen wearing in a group selfie with MS & JS. The evidence and property report from sheriff's office noted a phone tripod was taken from the bedroom/living room area. The condo was last put up for sale in early 2020, so I guess these photos are from around then.
There is just NO privacy in this layout for poor MS.

The sofa is so large, the kitchen right there. Another view shows a diningroom table and chairs.

Unless there were major renovations and furniture was removed (?), I'm having a difficult time understanding how part of this livingroom was set aside for Maddie.....

Looks like everyone entering the condo would be traipsing right on through. Poor kid.
 
It seems as though none of the reputable sources seem to know, or share where JS is.

My guess would be JS is with family. I don't think she is being treated inpatient for mental health. Not for this long. Her employment history seems shaky, so who knows her insurance status. I would think the costs for several months of care would be astronomical?

Even with good insurance, anyone I have ever known who was hospitalized for suicidal ideation/danger to self stayed a week or two, mainly to stabilize and get meds sorted.
While this is for Southern FL, I'm thinking it's close enough for our purposes.

On average, the daily cost for residential mental health treatment in South Florida ranges between $600 and $1,000. This cost includes accommodation, meals, and comprehensive therapeutic services such as individual and group therapy sessions, medication management, and other specialized treatments.

 
SS is such an idiot, it wouldn't shock me if his thought was any weird smells in father's car could be explained by poodles.

I personally think taking his father's car might be perceived as premeditation unless the Honda was inoperable or something? The Honda was also around the same model year, right? I've owned a few Hondas and generally speaking, they're pretty low maintenance, and hard to destroy. So, I'm a bit curious as to why SS was driving his father's Lincoln in the first place? Had he planned to murder MS, or something else sinister, and wanted to use a different vehicle to move her in?
bigger trunk? aside from trying to be less conspicuous. the ping info shows him arriving from the direction of North Port, his dad doesn't appear to be with him, So if he's driving the Lincoln, how and when did his dad get there? I thought maybe it was after Maddi went missing but he's also using his dad's phone. So did they drive up together and he possibly dropped his dad off somewhere ( hotel) and he left his phone in the car? Maybe that's the lag we see in the pings on his way to Maddis,
 
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Gentle correction: He wasn’t even her stepfather. He was JS’s on and off boyfriend.
Very true that he wasn't even her stepfather. However, for whatever their reasons were, JS & SS let LE think he was her stepfather, and didn't correct them when LE said things like "your wife" in his 2/27 interview. Which makes me wonder... why? There had to be a reason with those 2.
 
Yeah but why didn’t she report that as soon as she heard SS say it??
people sometimes do not want to get involved or report suspicions for fear of retaliation or simply being wrong and causing a problem. as ChiefH said in her presser, suspicions can be reported. she spent a bit of time at the end urging others to talk to their kids, open communication and suspicions can be reported as there are various hotlines. led me to believe there were several individuals who were interviewed, which we did not see their statements, whose hinky meters went off and didnt take that step.
 
bigger trunk?
Maybe?

MS wasn't very big though? For context, I'm 6ft and I've gotten inside the trunk/trunk area of different Hondas I've owned--fixing things, moving stuff around. I haven't owned an Accord, but have had smaller models (Fit, Civic), so pretty sure poor MS would fit in the Accord trunk. She was what, around 5ft1 and 110lbs or so?

The Lincoln kind of looks like a retiree car to me vs a "hoopty". Maybe SS thought no one would notice it, and just think it was an older guy driving it?

SS not having the money for car maintenance because he spent it all on toys and worse things would be my guess if not trying to hide his movements. I really don't know if he is criminally smart enough to plan a murder in advance, but knowing about the shady credit cards, I think he might be worse than we as a group have given him credit for. Thankfully he was caught.
 
Really appreciate your reply with the answers, @wcsleuth. :) So, SS still had his (or rather his Dad's car) the night of Feb. 26th. The car that was full of forensic evidence... that car. As I understand it, that car was towed away by LE the following night Feb. 27th.

Please excuse me, but I still have an insatiable list of questions.

In the meantime, if he still had his own (Dad's) vehicle to use, and I would think that vehicle needed a complete, and I mean COMPLETE, washing, bleaching, detailing, shampooing, etc., Did he ever try to clean the car he used to transport MS? No? Oh boy, his Dad's car must've been full of evidence when LE took it in for testing.

How many hrs. was he out driving? Why did SS choose to take Jenn's vehicle on a middle of the night drive then? Do any of you have any ideas of where do you think he went? I know there was some discussion about this before. Where do you think SS went that night after he had already placed MS in the field? Did he go back there?

I can't think of any other reason he'd go driving someplace if it wasn't related to the cover up. Why didn't he take his Dad's car to try to clean it? Instead he took Jenn's vehicle to do what?
I think even in dark some CCTVs would pick up cars/license plates. Wonder if LE have some evidence of where he drove that night? Would be especially convenient if he drove through someplace for a burger or coffee, or stopped in a shopping center car park to think — likely spots for cameras. OMO.
 
Maybe?

MS wasn't very big though? For context, I'm 6ft and I've gotten inside the trunk/trunk area of different Hondas I've owned--fixing things, moving stuff around. I haven't owned an Accord, but have had smaller models (Fit, Civic), so pretty sure poor MS would fit in the Accord trunk. She was what, around 5ft1 and 110lbs or so?

The Lincoln kind of looks like a retiree car to me vs a "hoopty". Maybe SS thought no one would notice it, and just think it was an older guy driving it?

SS not having the money for car maintenance because he spent it all on toys and worse things would be my guess if not trying to hide his movements. I really don't know if he is criminally smart enough to plan a murder in advance, but knowing about the shady credit cards, I think he might be worse than we as a group have given him credit for. Thankfully he was caught.
yeah youre probably right,, just tryin to think of reasons why he had his dad's car. Maybe they did drive up together? Has anyone ever said where the civic was during that time?
 
Maybe Stephan returned to the townhouse to get the other white croc. If he dressed her and carried her to his car, one of the crocs could have fallen off because crocs do not fasten to the feet. If he didn't notice it was missing until after he drove to the school, he could have decided to go back for the missing shoe (and the clicker). At that time Jenn was up helping with the dog, so he couldn't get the shoe without questions being asked. Maybe Jenn saw the shoe on the floor and picked it up thinking Maddy dropped it there. If Monday was gym day at school, Maddy would also have needed tennis shoes anyways.
One sad thought I had too is that in addition to preventing JS from going outside, a possible other reason SS volunteered to walk the dog was because Maddie’s dog could have noticed his beloved owner on the car and brought JS’ or neighbors’ attention to her as he barked and tried to get closer to her.

SS probably wanted to reduce the risk of the dog’s behavior revealing these heinous crimes and cruelty he had committed and continued to commit against Maddie by taking control of walking the dog himself.
 
Excusing no one but pedophiles manipulate. They groom. Not just the victim. The environment.

It's how it happens. You don't pass your child to a stranger in the park fir fear of what could happen. But uncle, pastor, boyfriend? Someone you thought you could trust? Someone who has been in your life, you think you know, who hasn't done anything sketchy in the past?

JS seems lacking in a lot of ways. Vulnerable and needy in her own right. Single mom. Easy prey. Maddie was young when that CRIMINAL entered their lives.

Again no excuses, trying to understand. SS came into their lives and probably love-bombed -- ack -- young Maddie, and JS failed to see that for what is was. Probably felt good. A father figure. Family. A mom, a "dad" and Maddie. And Maddie probably liked it too. At first. And then SS started pushing the boundaries. Alone time with Maddie. A park. A real McDonald's. Then hugging, tickling... pushing boundaries. Help with baths. JS likely saw the signs as engagement. Helpmate. Not the fiery red flags they were. More and more inappropriate. Cuddling, snuggling. It's no wonder Maddie didn't want to sleep alone. It was likely safer to sleep in Mom's bed, even with the pedophile in it. Maybe nothing ever happened to her there, and again GLARING RED FLAGS, I'm guessing by them JS felt that SS was a vetted steddad and somehow that was safe and okay with her.

She may have made the colossal error in putting the burden on Maddie. If something bad were happening, Maddie would tell her. If JS had suspicions, it's likely both SS and Maddie denied them. SS because he's a pedophile. Maddie because she was a victim, groomed not to tell.

Incredulous to me of course how she could EVER endorse an unrelated male -- and ar a certain point, ANY male, to share a bed with her minor, but I think she was trusting her judgment, a fatal error. She didn't have GOOD judgment.

What is especially tragic is that somehow she booted him from their home. It should have stayed that way.

He returns, in through the front door, and Maddie is DEAD within hours.

I'm going to guess that SS did a number on JS's psyche too. IMO SS "picked her" because he knew he could manipulate her. Just like he was with the recent girlfriend. Feel her out for what offends. Pedophiles IMO can be very patient people. Looking for opportunities, making opportunities...

I'm not sure, even now, that JS could process what occurred... it's entirely possible that her energy is and has always been expended, managing her own mental health. And sleep. And that what happened -- SS molesting and murdering her daughter, on her watch and in her home -- is still all about her (JS) and how it impacts her. And her sleep.

If she had greater capacity/empathy/balance, she'd have done better. Worse, Maddie had extended family and a dad/stepmother, and it would appear that, instead of inviting the village in and trusting THEM, she edged THEM out, in favor of SS.

She'll pay for that for the rest of her life. Whether she understands it or not is an entirely other thing.

The "normal" under which Maddie lived is devastating.

JMO
excellent post. with your well expressed explanation as to what could have been the reality, I struggle with JS lying on his behalf about the morning, not going into the school to check and her explaining why she left after 10 minutes without checking when people were still there. her explanation was nonsensical considering she was an hour early, in the frontline of pickup and immediately assumes she walked somewhere, ahead of her 1 hour pre bell arrival???? and so on, too much to put side by side as to what she said initially and what 'is'.

if she had no clue about the SA and had no clue what happened to her daughter when she put Madeline in his care that morning, what was there to preserve with him at that point, this is her child, everything else, this 'whatever relationship' is not the nucleus anymore. Madeline is. or should have been. she immediately went into cover mode on his behalf by lying, most notably about herself. I cannot get past that.
 
SS picking up Maddie for school 2 hours in advance, being seen throwing some of her belongings away at the compactor at 7:35 and now learning that two roommates, a mother and a her son, usually leave the house by 7:45 gives more credence to her murder being premeditated because he knew they needed to leave the house before the roommates woke up and maybe saw or overheard what he was doing to Maddie as they came into the kitchen area, towards the front door or made their way outside, MOO.
 
I too think she died in the flat I am undecided whether JS was involved in cleaning up . I do believe she was aware that Madeline was dead.

It is possible he went to move Madeline ,but for some reason chose not to. I wonder if he had planned to leave her in water.
Water is interesting point. Body could have been eaten before found. I’ve wondered if he had plans to dump her in the body of water — Alligator Lake — which is West of where he did leave her body (red X marks location of corpse, yellow marks area where he changed tire). SS maybe ran out of time since he had to change the tire — and certainly wanted to unload her body quickly when he got the flat tire in case someone stopped to help him. [Source: screenshot from Apple map app on my iPad, but doesn’t give me a link :(]

IMG_0070.jpeg
 
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After that initial interview with LE on Feb 26, JS and SS were allowed to return to the condo. That same night is when Sterns took off in the middle of the night in Jen's car, which would be early on the 27th. Later on the 27th, LE...snipped
Someone said maybe he went out for fast food. Oh boy, that would almost be as bad as visiting a comic store or shopping Tamagotchis at that time. No telling what this shallow creep was up to at a time like that. Perhaps vape supplies. SMH
Whatever way Madeline lost her life wasn't a way he could call 911. If she died earlier in the night, the bowel release would've happened in the house. So, maybe he cleaned it up and put the jeans on her before leaving the first time.
This has been on my mind since posting it. Consider if Madeline died inside the house and he was able to put those jeans on her before leaving. He may have protected the car seats with something also. There's something about the black shorts being mentioned by Jenn that was part of their initial story that stands out for question.
I found this bit interesting -- and depending on where you are listening/viewing the document dump, this info was on about page 58:
Orange County Sheriff Detective Davila (#7453) was called to conduct a human decomp sweep with his K9 at the OC Command Center. The K9 had no response to SS's Silver Lincoln but gave an alert at the wheel well of JS's White Nissan.
Based on this info, I do believe that SS drove JS's vehicle out to where he dumped MS body in the afternoon and either moved her body behind the gate to the bamboo trees, or if she was already there, maybe he just added a cover of hay/grass.​
Thanks for posting that, @Seattle1. Wow. This info matters big time to me. I don't understand how the dog didn't hit on SS's. I've been trying to see this the way you described, and can't. I agree he might've gone out to the field where he placed MS, but not drove right up to it in Jenn's car.

If the dogs hit on the wheel well of Jenn's vehicle, it wouldn't be from when SS took it out to the location of the field. He couldn't drive it right to the body. If he moved the body out there, he'd have to walk through the field to the body, wouldn't he?

1718569445325.png Wheel well is outside the car? It seems MS's deceased body must've been near Jenn's vehicle before being taken to the field. I can't imagine how. Did the condo have a garage? What I'm implying is somehow MS's deceased body might've been laying on the ground near the tires of Jenn's car, maybe before being placed in SS's car. If fluids pooled and later were driven over then I could see the scent being picked up into the wheel well. How would decomposition end up on the wheel well of Jenn's car otherwise? Stumped by this info.
 
Did the condo have a garage?
Not that I've been able to determine.
What I'm implying is somehow MS's deceased body might've been laying on the ground near the tires of Jenn's car, maybe before being placed in SS's car. If fluids pooled and later were driven over then I could see the scent being picked up into the wheel well. How would decomposition end up on the wheel well of Jenn's car otherwise? Stumped by this info.
All good Q's. I'd love some answers as do you! :D
 
yeah youre probably right,, just tryin to think of reasons why he had his dad's car. Maybe they did drive up together? Has anyone ever said where the civic was during that time?
I keep thinking SS had an Accord--sorry!

Maybe SS father had things in storage or was moving things to or from storage?

I remember SS (at least I believe it was SS) had a storage unit that was mentioned in previous discussions.

There is so much to keep track of, hopefully I have it right. I have no idea where SS' Honda is, and was somewhat shocked to learn he had a vehicle of his own. I thought he literally had ZERO assets when we first saw he had filled out the paperwork for legal assistance, but was wrong, apparently.
 
she says white crocs, green hoodie, black shorts and describes her backpack.

Was that why JS cut in to insist black shorts?

Looking back at that video now that was one of the first moments he gave himself away IMO because everyone expected her to be in her usual gym attire of a green sweater and black shorts but he was the only one to state that she was in pants, which she was indeed found wearing.

Also, it annoys me how he inserts himself in that interview and takes a domineering stance with his hands cross, body stiff and stance hovering/gluing himself to JS’ side when she is talking to the officer. It seems like he is trying to come off as intimidating or block others from participating in the interview as he takes up that space in that way, MOO.

How many 911 calls did SS make? None. How many places did he check or offer to “look for Maddie”? 0 So what gave him more right to engage with the authorities with her mother when compared to everyone else in that room his efforts to find her equaled a zero lump sum.

If anyone should be standing there and talking to the officer with JS it should be her mom, sister and niece, the very same people who stayed with JS as she for deputies to arrive, promised the 911 operator to be at the mom’s office when when cops finally arrived and called 911 multiple times because they wanted so badly to find their beloved girl and the response was time would be agonizing for anyone. In the aunt’s voice, in particular, you could just hear the love and concern she has for Maddie and that she wishes she could look for her herself without the need of the police or technology to do so.

I agree that JS family disliked SS and him being there seemed to have led them to being shut out which is both unfair and just plain wrong
 
SS picking up Maddie for school 2 hours in advance, being seen throwing some of her belongings away at the compactor at 7:35 and now learning that two roommates, a mother and a her son, usually leave the house by 7:45 gives more credence to her murder being premeditated because he knew they needed to leave the house before the roommates woke up and maybe saw or overheard what he was doing to Maddie as they came into the kitchen area, towards the front door or made their way outside, MOO.

This timeline also makes me even more suspicious of JS.

Also, why on earth would SS murder MS AT the condo with all of those people there?!

I'm really wondering if MS was killed in the home? Or if this happened elsewhere--i.e. what was SS doing on Telegram that night shortly after JS claims she sent MS & SS "upstairs to bed"?

We really do not know where SS & MS were. They may have been upstairs as reported. They may have been downstairs. They could have left the condo in another vehicle.

I would *think* if any of the vehicles associated with SS & JS were shown leaving the condo and out overnight on camera in the area we would have heard about it, but maybe not?
 
You know, your post made me consider a possibility. But I don't like that you're making me think like SS would. lol :p

Perhaps he used his dad's car (because we already know he's not very savvy about cameras catching his every move) thinking he'd transport her to the dumping site, then return his dad's car to him, thinking LE would never know about that, and when they did check out his car with a cadaver dog, no hit would be made because it was the wrong car.
Yes Gemmie….. and if so that IMO is another possible element of premeditation.

And that flat tire if a real occurrence, might also have messed his initial plan up a tad? MOO
 
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