IN IN - Denise Pflum, 18, Connersville, 28 Mar 1986 *POI died*

SAMS

TC Writer
Joined
Nov 16, 2016
Messages
3,306
Reaction score
25,280
Do we know if they retrieved her purse from the party she left it at the night prior to her disappearance? Did she have a bf or ex bf?
 

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
Do we know if they retrieved her purse from the party she left it at the night prior to her disappearance? Did she have a bf or ex bf?

Excellent questions SAMS.

I hope the police knows the answers to these questions, the answers could be very helpful to the case. I hope that we will hear about dramatic break in the case soon, I read about cold cases from 40 years ago when finally there is justice so we have to believe that Denise's family will have Closure and justice, I wish it will be this year.
 

SAMS

TC Writer
Joined
Nov 16, 2016
Messages
3,306
Reaction score
25,280
Excellent questions SAMS.

I hope the police knows the answers to these questions, the answers could be very helpful to the case. I hope that we will hear about dramatic break in the case soon, I read about cold cases from 40 years ago when finally there is justice so we have to believe that Denise's family will have Closure and justice, I wish it will be this year.
Thank you...cold cases are so heartbreaking because of the lack of info and attention to the cases...praying for justice for Denise after all of these years.
 

SAMS

TC Writer
Joined
Nov 16, 2016
Messages
3,306
Reaction score
25,280
“The following day, a farmer from Glenwood, Indiana reported that Pflum's cream-colored 1981 Buick Regal, which was registered to her parents, had been locked and abandoned alongside Tower Road, a gravel road east of Glenwood, since between 12:30 and 1:15 p.m. the day she went missing”
So if the friend saw her around 2 pm at fashion bug, was she alone? Did the friend notice her vehicle? MOO
 

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
“The following day, a farmer from Glenwood, Indiana reported that Pflum's cream-colored 1981 Buick Regal, which was registered to her parents, had been locked and abandoned alongside Tower Road, a gravel road east of Glenwood, since between 12:30 and 1:15 p.m. the day she went missing”
So if the friend saw her around 2 pm at fashion bug, was she alone? Did the friend notice her vehicle? MOO

I tend to believe that the disappearance of Denis connected to people from the place she went back to take her purse,maybe she saw something she wasn't supposed to see and they killed her.

Other option that the crime committed by someone who was close to her like an ex boyfriend. I don't think it was totally random crime.

It's so heartbreaking to think about the agony of her family and about Denis who lost her life because of evil people who were not brought to justice... but it's not to late,
this case is under ongoing investigation, I have hope that justice will finally come.
 
Last edited:

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
An article from the 28 of March 2019

By KATE THURSTON - For the Connersville News-Examiner


“It feels like we have been chasing a ghost for all these years.”

David Pflum and his wife have been patiently waiting for an answer to their daughter’s whereabouts.

It has been 33 long years today: 33 years of a family seeking an answer that would lead them to find their daughter, who has been missing since March 28, 1986.

An investigation at Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary started last August when law enforcement officials started draining a pond there. Hopes were high that this would hold all the answers to the disappearance of Denise Pflum. Sadly, the investigation has hit another dead end. Denise, who has been forever 18 in the eyes of the community, is nowhere to be found.

After challenging weather conditions throughout the winter, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department decided it was time to dig deeper for answers.

On March 6, Sheriff Joey Laughlin and staff found conditions of the pond stable enough to walk across and felt it was safe enough to continue the investigation. For months they have been trying to use a device that would help find any human remains in the pond.

“On March 7, cadaver K9’s from Homeland Security were brought back out to the pond and were able to search the dry pond bed,” Laughlin said. “A dog did indicate numerous times near the southwest end of the pond. On March 8, a technician from Underground Detective (a company based in Ohio), came to the pond and performed a search of the dry pond bed, specifically the locations indicated previously by the K9’s and the indication from March 7. Nothing was found during this search.”

Underground Detective used a ground penetrating radar to search for human remains. After no remains were found, Laughlin determined the area was not of interest.

“At this time, we are finishing up at the pond. This includes cleaning up the area and rebuilding the dam, which is being done by Landstrom Excavating. Owner Josh Landstrom has done countless hours of work for free for us to help with this cause.”

Laughlin, along with many, was disappointed in the search that was hoped to be a conclusion to the 33 year investigation.

“This location (the pond) has long been rumored to be the burial location of Denise Pflum. I feel pretty confident that we have searched the area to the best of our ability and we can now move forward to other areas and theories on this case. It is disappointing we didn’t find what we were looking for,” Laughlin said.

“We didn’t search the pond on a whim; we had confidence in the dogs and the additional information gathered over the years. I get asked about ‘the pond’ every day somewhere and I know this community is desperate to see a resolution to this case, so in that regard we were all hopeful this was going to be something, but this does not deter us, at all. I am extremely proud of what we accomplished. We were able to close a major door in this case with limited resources and initially limited help. My guys went above and beyond the call of duty on this detail.”

Laughlin said that no FCSD employee received paid overtime. He said no tax payer dollars were used.

“Everyone took comp time (they get to take time off later) instead of pay. During the initial phase, we were at the pond 24 hours with only myself and my deputies (10) filling those roles. This was for well over a month with guys working their regular hours and also working a homicide investigation. We are extremely grateful to some of our jailers and to the Rush and Union county sheriffs departments for lending us officers to cover these times as well. Several folks volunteered services, equipment and time,” Laughlin said. “We were able to cover any additional items with grant funds. We would like to give a big thanks to Munson Excavating, Friendly Contracting, Fayette County Highway Department, the Everton Volunteer Fire Department, Rush County EMA and the FBI ERT team for all their help as well.”

Denise’s parents haven’t given up hope on their daughter.

“We had hope that some resolution to this nightmare would take place,” Denise’s father, David Pflum said. “We received word from our Sheriff’s Department that nothing was found at the pond; however, they have assured us that other sites and persons of interest have surfaced and will be investigated.

“Denise left our home 33 years ago to do something very simple: to retrieve her purse that she had lost the night before while at a ‘spring break’ party attended by over 200 school-aged kids,” Pflum explained. “Having spent her last night in our home, she then left Good Friday at 12:30 p.m., March 28, 1986. She stopped to talk with our neighbor, who had been her kindergarten teacher, to tell her about her college plans. Her life after a lot of hard work was moving forward toward her goals.

“No one has come forward to tell us what has happened to her since. Local law investigators and police investigation teams have continued to work this unsolved case. Media sources also have invested time following and reporting their efforts. We have continued to place notices pertaining to our daughter’s life on social media. We remain extremely grateful for the support of the community.”

Now that the pond has been crossed off of the list of locations where Denise might be, law enforcement will continue to search rumored areas.

“Just this past Friday, I was advised of a location and went to look at the spot, to judge whether further investigation is needed,” Laughlin said. “It will be searched. I still receive up to two to three calls a week on this case. Some things are repetitive and some are new, but they all help. We did send some items to the lab and are needing to gather additional information to submit to finalize those findings.”

Laughlin is still confident in the investigation and will continue to persevere.

“There is a lot more to look into and we will continue to exhaust every resource we have to close this case. I am in contact with the Pflums, specifically Mrs. Pflum every Friday, and I look forward to the day that we can give them the closure they so greatly deserve.”

There still is a $25,000 reward leading to the exact location of her remains or if she is alive, where she is.

When she disappeared, Pflum was 5-foot-6, 135 pounds, with light brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a red Motley Crue T-shirt, striped blue jeans, old tennis shoes and her class ring.

The family is asking for tips and leads from anyone who can help. People with information may contact Sheriff Laughlin at 765-825-1110 ext. 604, or email [email protected]


Connersville News-Examiner - newsexaminer.com
 

PastTense

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2014
Messages
1,909
Reaction score
4,180
"One might call Richard Walter a criminal genius; he calls himself a “murder mechanic.” Walter, a forensic psychologist, a well-known criminal profiler and modern-day Sherlock Holmes, has spent the last week in Connersville, helping with the cold case of Denise Pflum, a young woman who went missing in 1986...

With his help, local law enforcement thinks they have finally found the person who murdered Denise Pflum.

After an investigation in a pond at Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary, which started last August and came up as a dead end in March, Fayette County Sheriff Joey Laughlin didn’t throw in the towel. He took another route, one he now wishes he had taken years ago. Laughlin contacted Walter, who agreed to help with the case. “We are close in the investigation, we brought Mr. Walter in to help guide us in the right direction,” Laughlin said. “I have never felt so close to solving this case my entire career.”...

“The perp is going to be surprised as anyone else,” he said. “They may never hear from us until we come for them with handcuffs.”"
Connersville News-Examiner - newsexaminer.com

 

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
"One might call Richard Walter a criminal genius; he calls himself a “murder mechanic.” Walter, a forensic psychologist, a well-known criminal profiler and modern-day Sherlock Holmes, has spent the last week in Connersville, helping with the cold case of Denise Pflum, a young woman who went missing in 1986...

With his help, local law enforcement thinks they have finally found the person who murdered Denise Pflum.

After an investigation in a pond at Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary, which started last August and came up as a dead end in March, Fayette County Sheriff Joey Laughlin didn’t throw in the towel. He took another route, one he now wishes he had taken years ago. Laughlin contacted Walter, who agreed to help with the case. “We are close in the investigation, we brought Mr. Walter in to help guide us in the right direction,” Laughlin said. “I have never felt so close to solving this case my entire career.”...

“The perp is going to be surprised as anyone else,” he said. “They may never hear from us until we come for them with handcuffs.”"
Connersville News-Examiner - newsexaminer.com

Wow!!! Thank you so much PastTense for this Dramatic update! I have been waiting for such an update during the almost 3 years that I am following the case,
I Can not describe my excitement in words when I read this/
I feel that justice is about to be done and Dennis's parents will finally get a closure and Justice after so many years. Let's hope that the next update will be soon and we will read that the murderer had already been caught.
 

sunnynz

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
1,510
Reaction score
3,374
This is great publicity for them. As it alludes to int he article, this is the kind of case where you just need someone to come forward with information. If, as suspected, multiple people were involved in what happened to Denise then those multiple people like told at least one other person each. Loyalties change over time and seeing this article (plus the reward) will hopefully prompt someone to do the right thing and come forward with info. I really hope Denise's parents get to find her before they pass.
 

Sar_23ah

New Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2020
Messages
1
Reaction score
3
This is great publicity for them. As it alludes to int he article, this is the kind of case where you just need someone to come forward with information. If, as suspected, multiple people were involved in what happened to Denise then those multiple people like told at least one other person each. Loyalties change over time and seeing this article (plus the reward) will hopefully prompt someone to do the right thing and come forward with info. I really hope Denise's parents get to find her before they pass.

This young lady does resemble the Lake Pontchartrain Jane Doe discovered in 1986. I can only pray she finds her way home.
 

PayrollNerd

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2018
Messages
11,435
Reaction score
63,931
The timeline is interesting. Mom comes home just after noontime until 3:00 pm. Denise leaves soon after but Mom's intuition senses something amiss about an hour or so later. A distant cousin returned the purse..... how distant and how old? The farmer reports the car was parked along the road 12:30-1:15pm. The report of a friend seeing Denise wandering around a Fashion Bug store at 2:00 pm seems like someone trying to throw off investigators.

Denise Pflum vanished after leaving her Indiana home in 1986
upload_2020-3-9_14-34-6.png
Eighteen-year-old Denise Pflum had a bright future ahead of her. She was a star athlete. A gifted artist. Ranked at the top of her class. And she had dreams of becoming a scientist.

“She had everything going for her,” Denise’s mother, Judy, told Dateline. “If she were here today, she’d be working on a cure for cancer. Or, well, maybe even a cure for this coronavirus. She just wanted to help people.”

High school graduation was just around the corner and in March 1986, Denise had already been accepted to Miami University in Ohio where she planned to major in Microbiology. She was hoping to go on a track scholarship. Denise also played volleyball, basketball, and softball.

She lived at home in Connersville, Indiana, with her parents, Judy and David, and her younger sister, Jenny, who was a high school sophomore.

Snip:
Students were off that week for Spring Break, which meant getting to hang out late with friends. Parties. Many of the parties in that area were held on someone’s farmland -- with a bonfire at the center of it all.

Denise had recently broken up with her boyfriend of three years, her mother said. “She started to be more social. She was hanging out with her friends more. Dating,” Judy said.

So Denise went to a party the night before Good Friday. A small gathering soon turned into several hundred teenagers. Denise returned home that night – but forgot her purse.

The next day, Denise wanted someone to go with her back to the party site to look for the purse. But none of her friends could go, and her sister had softball practice and couldn't go.

“We’re not sure why she didn’t want to go alone,” Judy said. “She was fearless. Ever since she was a child. So for her to be uncomfortable to go back to the site of the party is unnerving. Something wasn’t right.”

But Denise got into her cream-colored 1981 Buick Regal and headed out to the party site. She never made it. According to the family, the tenant of the farmland told them he never saw her return on that Friday.

“We do not believe that she ever went back to that area – something or some person interrupted that opportunity to do that," David Pflum told NBC affiliate WTHR in 2018. "We knew right away that something was wrong because she had never been out without our knowledge about where she was going to be. When the time unfolded into the next day and the subsequent next days then we knew we really had a problem.”

Judy told Dateline she saw her daughter briefly on Friday.

“I worked at a bank about a quarter of a mile away from our house,” Judy said. “We got three hours off that day for Good Friday, from 12 noon to 3 p.m., so I was home a little after noon.”

When Judy got home, Denise told her the plan to go back to the party site to look for her purse.

“That was the last time I ever saw my daughter,” Judy said. “And before I went back to work that day, I had a gut feeling. Something did not feel right to me.”

Not even an hour after Denise left the house, Judy said a distant cousin of Denise, who had gone to school with her, returned the purse to Judy at their house.

“But there were no cell phones back then,” Judy explained. “No way to call Denise and let her know.”

When Denise did not return home that evening, her family reported her missing.

“We thought maybe she had a car accident,” Judy said. “We drove all over the county looking to see if her car was in a ditch somewhere.”

The next day, a farmer from Glenwood, Indiana reported that Denise’s Buick Regal, which was registered to her parents, was abandoned alongside Tower Road, a gravel lane east of Glenwood. He said the car had been there since between 12:30 p.m. and 1:15 p.m. the day she went missing, but he told authorities he initially thought it belonged to mushroom hunters.

The car, which was locked, was in a rural area near a barn across the county from where Denise’s family lived and about three miles away from the party site. Her family said there was no reason for her to be in that area.

Snip:
The Indiana State Police has also been brought in to investigate.

According to State Police Detective Sergeant Scott Jarvis, the agency collected DNA samples from the family, along with a DNA sample from a baby tooth belonging to Denise. It has been put into the National DNA Database System.

The evidence has been resubmitted to the Indiana State Police lab to check for any new results given the advances in technology over the years, but those tests did not provide any new clues.

Sheriff Laughlin confirmed there are several persons of interest in the case, but adds there is not enough evidence to charge anyone.

“We believe more than one person is involved -- by statements they’ve made or by their relationship to Denise,” Sheriff Laughlin said.

Denise’s case is also being worked on by someone else.

Stacy Reese has made it her mission to find out what happened to Denise. She was only three years old when Denise vanished and grew up in the same town. Her mother babysat both Denise and Jenny when they were children. Her father was a volunteer firefighter and assisted the search parties in the days following Denise’s disappearance.

Today, Stacy is a police detective in Vincennes County, but volunteers her services to help the Pflum family and has become their spokesperson.

“It has always been a part of my life. If you live in this area, you know about Denise and you know her story. It’s part of you. It's part of all of us,” Stacy told Dateline. “Denise’s story is why I became a cop.”

Stacy has been following every tip and lead she receives and in 2018, started a Facebook page “Justice for Denise Pflum” to raise awareness of the case.

“This case is solvable,” Stacy said. “All you need is one person. One person to come forward with the information we need. The missing link that completes this puzzle.”

Snip:
The Pflum family is offering a $25,000 reward leading to the location of Denise and information leading to the arrest of the person or people responsible.

If you have any information on Denise’s case, please call the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department at (765) 825-1110 Ext. 604 or the Indiana State Police at (765) 778-2121.
 

PayrollNerd

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2018
Messages
11,435
Reaction score
63,931
Facebook post on Feb 28th 9:31pm
Justice For Denise Pflum

I am going to go back a while on this page to clear up some things. When Denise's car was seen by the local farmer he simply thought it was a mushroom hunter. When he heard about the Sheriff's department looking for a car fitting the description he called it in the next day
to the Sheriff.

Unfortunately, there was a mad rush to where this car was spotted. Any evidence possibly contained in tire tracks or shoes was destroyed. The car was locked and no keys were ever found at this spot. The car was then towed to the backside of the old Sheriff's office. Since the car was then gone from the area Judy and I and others said that if Denise or anyone else would return to this scene that it would be a good idea to have people there, in the old barn that was there.

Later that evening George Zimmerman called off the detail and when we found that out the next morning we were upset, to say the least. We were assured that personnel would be there. If they were called off we could have been there or family could have been willing to be there. The next morning is when the infamous "BANDANA" was found in the barn. It wasn't there the evening before so someone or something had been there. That bandana is seemingly nowhere to be found. No one seems to know where it went for sure. With DNA today a lot of possibilities could take place.

I hope this clears up some comments and misunderstandings about the car and the bandana.
 

oviedo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2008
Messages
17,435
Reaction score
165,415
I’m sure they processed the car for prints ? Sounds to me like she met up with someone and either drove with them or was driven by them to a spot and then the car was driven and locked and the keys were taken ? Broad daylight ?
JMO
 

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
This is great publicity for them. As it alludes to int he article, this is the kind of case where you just need someone to come forward with information. If, as suspected, multiple people were involved in what happened to Denise then those multiple people like told at least one other person each. Loyalties change over time and seeing this article (plus the reward) will hopefully prompt someone to do the right thing and come forward with info. I really hope Denise's parents get to find her before they pass.

Now we know for sure that the main theory by the police is that multiple people were involved ,so what was the motive?If it was one person then it might have been an ex-boyfriend or random killer (I don't believe it) But if a number of people were involved then I thought of a theory that might sound strange but that's another angle.

Maybe Dennis had a friend or someone that Denise was interested in ,and there were another girl who also interested in that guy and she wanted to take revenge on Dennis and that girl was in contact with very bad people and she invited Dennis's disappearance,Hence the involvement of multiple people.Is that theory sounds too strange or do you think it's a possibility?
 

sunnynz

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2016
Messages
1,510
Reaction score
3,374
Now we know for sure that the main theory by the police is that multiple people were involved ,so what was the motive?If it was one person then it might have been an ex-boyfriend or random killer (I don't believe it) But if a number of people were involved then I thought of a theory that might sound strange but that's another angle.

Maybe Dennis had a friend or someone that Denise was interested in ,and there were another girl who also interested in that guy and she wanted to take revenge on Dennis and that girl was in contact with very bad people and she invited Dennis's disappearance,Hence the involvement of multiple people.Is that theory sounds too strange or do you think it's a possibility?
My guess is an ex boyfriend or a guy she knew who liked her. I think the multiple parties thing would be that a friend or family member of the killer assisted in covering things up.
 

Blue Girl1991

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 18, 2016
Messages
237
Reaction score
436
My guess is an ex boyfriend or a guy she knew who liked her. I think the multiple parties thing would be that a friend or family member of the killer assisted in covering things up.

This is definitely a logical option.
 

PayrollNerd

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 3, 2018
Messages
11,435
Reaction score
63,931
April 11th post:

Justice For Denise Pflum

The calendar date of Good Friday 34 years ago was March 28. If that date sounds familiar, it is the day that 18 year old Connersville High School senior Denise Diane Pflum disappeared, never to be seen again by her family.

That afternoon something horrible happened that took her life. Those responsible, frantically and very carelessly, took steps to cover up their horrific crime and made a pact to be silent forevermore.

Those responsible are still living with the memory of that day and the fear of being found out for what they did. They are also thinking about what mistakes they may have made in their haste to hide that heinous act...and well they should be.

Some individuals with first and second-hand knowledge of the events that took Denise from us that Good Friday are deceased. Each day there is the likelihood that others will pass, especially with this terrible pandemic sweeping the globe. Once they are gone they will lose the chance to do the right thing. That alone, so far, has not been enough to convince them to come forward.

So consider this, they did make mistakes. Years have passed but soon those mistakes will be exposed and then will come a knock on the door. What then will they have to say for themselves? Will they then try to shift the blame away from themselves and to one of their co-conspirators? Of course they will. Then and only then will the dominoes fall and so will the curtain hiding the truth about the disappearance of Denise Diane Pflum.

If you read this and you want to tell what you KNOW about that day call:

FCSD Sheriff Laughlin at 765 825 1110 or
ISP Det. Jarvis at 765 778 2121 or
Private Message this page.

To all following this page, have a Blessed Easter and stay safe.
 

Attachments

  • 7FFCF731-417C-4C5D-8D20-4DECFB03114E.jpeg
    7FFCF731-417C-4C5D-8D20-4DECFB03114E.jpeg
    150.5 KB · Views: 2
Top