Mystery couple murdered in South Carolina, 1976 - #6

Discussion in 'Mystery couple murdered South Carolina 1976' started by christine2448, Jun 27, 2009.

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  1. T rex

    T rex Member

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    The height is a little off on the male and it says his hair was strawberry blonde. The woman is much closer to being a match but in the pictures you provided ( better than I've seen anywhere else) I don't see the distinctive moles.
    I didn't really understand about the map so while it's entirely possible you've been tracking this west coast couple I'm kinda doubtful about it being our east coast couple. But you never know.
    I don't know where you got the pics but if it is indeed this missing woman then good job on that and if it could somehow be confirmed that these two actually made it to Spokane I'm sure that would help in an investigation not to mention sleuthing.
     
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  2. T rex

    T rex Member

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    Yea like that. Only not a picture but a design, so I can see how camel joe in his racing gear could be mixed up with snoopy (especially when he's wearing his WWII flying ace hat)
     
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  3. annemc2

    annemc2 her name is Suzanne Marie Sevakis

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    To my untrained eye, I don't see any physical similarities between the couples. However, I really really appreciate your enthusiasm and tenacity in regards to the research! The shirt thing is very interesting, as is the jewelry/former truck stop angle. Keep it up!

    A brain blip: If the UIDs were indeed Levell and Picard, might Picard have using his middle name of "Locke" that was misheard as "Jaques?"
     
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  4. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    The shirt thing would be a remarkable coincidence! I can’t even find an example of the shirt described anywhere online...archived or otherwise! I also thought “Jock” could have been confused with or intentionally switched with “Locke”. The reason I figured his nickname was “Jock” was because he was into several sports, most especially Lacrosse.

    I’ve spent a lot of time looking into the missing couple and it’s pretty fascinating and puzzling. There is something...just not quite right with the story and details (thus why the map is confusing...stories don’t match or add up). I can’t quite put my finger on anything, but I believe there’s a connection somewhere!

    Regardless, I am already invested! No turning back now! haha

    Thanks EVERYONE for the feedback!!!

    •MMcG•
     
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  5. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    Well, it really would have helped if all the photos had uploaded. FYI I am not a professional photo editor, as will be evident. It’s difficult trying to get a still image to reflect a different pose. But maybe I got it close enough....

    Laura does have a few spots that appear to be moles, but I was reading through a few threads and it would seem that the moles were a tiny bit exaggerated in most of the touched up PM photos. Carl’s looks a lot more natural and probably closer to what the moles would have looked like. IMO.

    Laura has pretty distinct features. Her slender nose, eyebrows and eyelashes! I flipped the photo of her so that you could see what I’m talking about with the eyebrows...next to Carl’s recon, they’re very much alike.

    Jock Doe has two features that stick out the most to me: his extreme overbite/receding chin and brow bone. I put the person whose photo I found from Expo 74 next to the actual PM of Jock’s and again, very similar.

    Another thing I just noticed is that the guy from Expo 74, with the red shirt, has his sleeves rolled up! I thought it was a sleeveless shirt (and have been looking for that in all the other photos) but I think they are rolled up under the body of the shirt.

    Anywho... these were supposed to go along with my previous post, but for whatever reason, didn’t make it! :) ;)
     

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  6. T rex

    T rex Member

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    The reason he is known as Jock is a misleading one and perhaps involves a little incompetence too. The witness said his name was Jack. LE decided that it was probably Jock or Jacques and more or less changed his statement.
     
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  7. Awsi Dooger

    Awsi Dooger Well-Known Member

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    I think the key tip was Washington or Oregon. I don't see any indication it was seriously pursued.

    The appearance of this couple has been a distraction, IMO. Just step back big picture and think how differently the case would have evolved, minus those crime scene and morgue photos. They are deep South in the United States, and not exactly on the coast. The clothing is American, including the event spotlighted on the T-shirt. Her rings may source from the western United States. The matchbook traces to a company from the western United States. His dental work is cutting edge and extensive.

    Then we spend all our time searching and speculating about Canada or Venezuela or Argentina or so many countries I can't keep track. I'm not even sure the ones I listed are correct, other than Canada. These threads are so dizzying.

    That mechanic who came forward from Nebraska, saying he thought he recognized the couple and worked on their vehicle, would have been moderately interesting without the matchbook link. But when the labeled matchbook is on the person, and strongly hints the Does indeed visited that area, I have no idea why that tip was allowed so little weight, especially when the mechanic offered two very specific states in Washington and Oregon toward their license plate origin.

    When a working class guy like that discovers the case as far back as 1976 or 1977, given the communication realities of the time period, and and goes out of his way to make contact, I'm inclined to pay attention.

    BTW, I don't know the exact point the mechanic came forward, or if he indeed worked at a Grant's Truck Stop. That tip nor the KOA tip seem to have generated the logical degree of followup, at least not within the publicly available notes.

    I guess we look at the faces and don't associate that with Washington or Oregon. Understandable, but not to the point of devaluing the tip to this extent. As I mentioned in a recent post regarding Walker County Jane Doe, I am astonished at all the time devoted to sampling missing person photos or one theory after another, as opposed to simply taking advantage of the amazing resource called the media. This case should have been forwarded and touted to aggressive reporters in Washington and Oregon long ago.

    I will point out that Washington and Oregon aren't a heck of a long away from Canada, even if it's not the region we associate as French Canada. I've visited Canada often enough to know that French language and appearance doesn't go away, including in the northern territories. Overall I'd have more confidence in that KOA possibility if it were nearby and not 40-50 miles further south in Santee.

    I've driven past that stretch of I-95 so many times, including in recent years. That's what makes it odd for me. It really is plenty of nothing. What were they doing there? I remember seeing this case on Unsolved Mysteries decades ago and wondering why they devoted only a quick blurb instead of a full segment. Actually they had several good Doe cases on that blurb and should have devoted an entire episode to the topic, like they devoted an entire episode to the 1962 Alcatraz escape.

    I will be driving past the area in late October en route to a college football game in Pittsburgh. I may stop and take a look at Locklair Road and the surroundings. I don't see any related videos online. Also the Google Maps version isn't great because it remains a dirt road, therefore the arrow stops in its tracks instead of allowing a detailed look. The road itself is not more much than a mile in length.

    I hope the case will be active and perhaps solved by DNA Doe Project by late October. I'm not betting on Washington or Oregon region as majority likely, but greater chance than is generally assigned. I think of those states as advanced and progressive, just the type of area where dentists in the mid '70s could have been ahead of the curve.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
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  8. CCJD

    CCJD Well-Known Member

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    rsbm

    The mechanic came forward not long after the couple was found. Pertinent part of article from theTimes and Democrat, Sept 22, 1976 attached.
    22 Sep 1976, 24 - The Times and Democrat at Newspapers.com
     

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  9. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    *snipped*

    I read your post on WCJD. I like the way you think. This will seem hard to believe if you’ve seen any of my posts - a lot of information and theories jumbled inside my brain that are even more of a mess when translated into written form. So you seem to better be able to express the things I’m playing in my mind! :)

    I agree with most of what you said. I’ve found lately that stepping away from cases I’ve spent months and years looking into and browsing through others I’ve never known much about, I’m able to keep distant enough to remain logical but familiarize myself enough to see things a little differently. I’m not saying that anyone here does not think logically or present great theories, but I know what it’s like to get tunnel vision. I’ve previously mentioned Occam’s Razor, and I think that principle applies some of the time.

    Just to clarify a few things that I’ve been able to verify since I really began researching...
    - The mechanic from Nebraska, as you said, is a lead I wish they had investigated further. Possibly they did and it led nowhere, but (if my theory of the Does being Stephen and Linda is correct) the Washington/Oregon license plate makes that witness substantially more credible! (IMO)
    - The man wasn’t a mechanic at Grant’ Truck Stop because Grant’s was located in Kansas not Nebraska. I still think he was a very good lead at the time!
    - The matchbook struck me as odd because there was no mention of him being a smoker. Then I remembered they were likely hitchhiking and back then those matchbooks were given out like peppermints at trucks tops, especially along highways and interstates. So, he probably picked it up while traveling and just kept it as a souvenir. Matchbooks are quite the collectors item these days, it seems!
    - (Continuing largely upon my theory of Stephen and Linda being the Doe couple) I think they did leave New Jersey on and made it to Spokane, Washington in time for the World Expo (Expo 74), which ran everyday from mid May to mid November of 1974. It was the “Woodstock” of that decade and is definitely part if Spokane’s legacy. Exhibits from all over the world were there, the largest and most popular being Canada (located directly on the border) and the USSR. So they would have encountered people, cultures and merchandise vendors from all walks of life.
    - The time frames given in Stephen and Linda’s Case are vastly conflicting and sometimes near impossible to verify or explain. IMO, none of the dates are accurate except for the month they were said to have left New Jersey. That being said, after leaving New Jersey and making it to WA, they would have had a few months (approx 4) left of the Expo. They were then intending to spend time on the Pacific Crest Trail, which is mostly traveled “northbound” NOBO, from Mexico to Canada. Not many people, especially back then traveled from Canada to Mexico. I do think that they spent time on the trail though. I’m just not sure what they would have done considering they were right at the Northern Terminus during the Expo but they planned to begin the hike from the Southern Terminus? Maybe they changed their mind and traveled to the other states along the west coast?
    - The Jewelry Jane Doe was wearing is currently sold as “vintage” jewelry. They are mass produced and distributed now, but back then I have not been able to verify exactly who carried them. I guess 1974 was ‘a long time ago’. They were and still are found at many places in the Midwest. I own a few pieces very similar and they were purchased in the 80s in New Mexico and Colorado. Present day, the largest wholesale supplier and retailer of Indian/Native American/southwestern style jewelry is located in Gallup, New Mexico. The same town as one of the Grant’s Truck Stops. Ironically, the jewelry company was founded in 1974. They did confirm that they were not a vendor at Expo 74. I spoke with someone who said they did not carry the rings found in Jane Doe, but again, that was a long time ago, and they didn’t seem certain of that fact. (I think it’s impossible to know for sure because I found a couple of online vintage jewelry auctions that identically pictured at least one of the rings).
    - When attempting to map out locations for both the Does and Stephen and Linda, I kept seeing a lot of “Route 66”. That makes sense.
    - The t-shirt. ::sigh:: There were about a dozen races during that season for that series (Camel Challenge GT). The locations range from Canada to Ohio to Venice Beach to Florida. That shirt could honestly have come from any of those races or quite possibly none of those races. They were supposedly traveling with a backpack each after all. I think it’s safe to assume (and especially if they spent any time amongst the trail culture) they could have easily picked up hand-me-downs along the way. Also explains why they were not wearing underwear!

    Okay...I’ll stop for now and allow you to make heads or tails of all that! ;)

    FWIW, I have contacted a few people attempting to located additional photos of Expo 74, or at least verify the date of the photos containing the man I suspect to be John Doe, Stephen or both. Maybe that will turn up something!

    Thanks for the insight!

    •MMcG•
     
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  10. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the article!! I couldn’t seem to find where I saved the info about the mechanic!

    Adding to my previous post....I noticed there was a “trucker strike” back during this time. Apparently fuel costs were raised and a lot of over the road truck drivers were just not going to haul, which led to a nationwide stoppage. Not EVERY driver stopped transporting, but enough to garner some attention. So, if the Does had been hitchhiking, they very possibly could have found their way into the vehicle of someone who may have been taking advantage of the temporary lack of 18-wheelers on the road! Just a thought!
     
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  11. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    *I stand corrected! Grant’s was in Nebraska! I have no idea where I came up with Kansas! :/ *
     
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  12. T rex

    T rex Member

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    I can't find a listing for Grants Truckstop in Kansas but according to the Nebraska Secretary of State there was one in York NE. Although it doesn't list a physical address the one it does give is probably it. If I remember correctly the owner John Grant' s wife was also from this area.
     
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  13. T rex

    T rex Member

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    Sorry I didn't see your post in time.
     
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  14. T rex

    T rex Member

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    Overall I agree with you. In my opinion these two victims didn't get much of an investigation at all.
    It was solely the responsibility of the coroners office to identify them. Now I cant remember the name of the coroner at that time but he is in one of the crime scene photos and I can't find it right now either. I just spent about a half hour looking, maybe one of the others here knows what Im talking about and can come up with it. I have read his obituary before and it said he went to a forestry school in florida??? I don't know what qualified him to be a coroner but I guess that's who the people voted for. I don't think him or his deputy Verna Moore had the experience to take on this case. All they could do is hold on to the bodies and hope someone would come and claim them. However I do believe that they were aware of their own limitations and they did do a couple of very smart things. One is they sent the victims to the University of South Carolina for autopsies and didn't try to do something themselves. The other was in 2007 when they exhumed the bodies for dna. I give the coroners office credit for this.
    Now on the flip side of this Sumter Co Sheriff Ira Byrd Parnell ( heroe of the Pee Wee Gaskins case) with all his credentials and his ties to the FBI did pretty much nothing even after a suspect and a murder weapon surfaced. He totally shut the investigation down stating that his department was going to wait for these people to be identified throwing all the weight on to the shoulders of a coroners office that he had to have known was probably not qualified and didn't have the resources to solve it.
     
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  15. T rex

    T rex Member

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    I dont know who gets credit for requesting help from the DDP but that was a good move to.
     
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  16. Ozoner

    Ozoner On Time Out

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    The strong physical differences preclude a match. In all liklihood, Stephen Packard and Linda Lee Lovell never made it out of California.
     
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  17. Coleraine

    Coleraine Member

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    I agree with you, Ozoner. I'd like to believe that there's a match here because I've spent so much time researching all I could find on the Lovell/Packard case, but I just don't see it. According to his mother, Stephen had been in contact with family every few days up until the last call from Stinson Beach, CA on 6/10. Then one of Stephen's travelers checks was cashed 10 days later in Westport, CA. After that, nothing. This is all detailed at length in posts on the "Linda Lovell/Stephen Packard" thread in the "1970s Missing" thread.

    It doesn't seem likely--to me--that both Packard and Lovell would have chosen voluntarily to stop all communication with their family unless something happened to them in California.
     
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  18. MadMcGoo

    MadMcGoo Well-Known Member

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    I agree that the it doesn’t seem likely, based on the information circulating around MSM and SM, Stephen and Linda would have ended up in South Carolina. But I think there’s a whole lot more to that story that what’s been said. The dates alone do not add up. I’ve read in some places they left on June 1st, stayed in communication for 3 weeks and then no word after that. I’ve read that they left on the 10th and “wrote home” every 3 days until the 20th, when he cashed one of the checks and phoned home. (I’ve never found the source of the $800 and $600 cashiers checks each of them had or any proof that they did make contact with their families from California. I assume there must be, or why would California be the reporting agency if he lived in NJ and she in MT?) I’ve read a newspaper article that quoted his mother claiming they left four days after the sister’s husband died in the work accident, which occurred on June 14th. Another says “a sunny Saturday in June”. Other places state they were last seen alive on the 27th. A family member stated, on this thread, that they disappeared from Northern California in summer of 1976? I can find nothing that verifies most of this. She also talks about the 2 being in love and even though she was young at the time she remembered “what a close bond they had”. If that’s the case, we know they didn’t meet along the way but had known each other for some amount of time before they left New Jersey. Basically all I can say I’ve found is they left New Jersey, New Jersey state police notified his mother after “three weeks of searching” that they were going to assume they had been murdered, and then a couple of interviews by the mom, about 10 years later, briefly discussing her sons disappearance and some other life events. No mention of contact with law enforcement in California or any follow up afterward. Nothing at all from Stephen’s paternal side or Linda’s family. That, personally, is all I’ve been able to come up with. I can definitely appreciate where you’re coming from and maybe I’m overthinking things. Something just seems rotten in the State of NJ.
    JMOO

    I’m still searching though ;)

    •MMcG•
     
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  19. T rex

    T rex Member

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    I came across this missing person today and thought it was worth making a post. I don't remember her being discussed here but I could be wrong.
    Her name is Irene LaRosa, missing from Connecticut 1971. She wasn't reported missing until 2016. Namus lists her eyes as green but hazel eyes can be greenish and if they are they are often times considered green. I can't find anything on her at the Doe Network so I don't know about the possibility of DNA.

    Irene Lanora LaRosa – The Charley Project
     
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  20. nohopehere

    nohopehere Member

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    To me Irene LaRosa has nothing to do with Sumter Jane Doe. I mean...I can't see 2 moles on her left cheek :(
     
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