Thursday, April 14, 2016

L Is for Leah Roberts

This month I'm participating in the A to Z ChallengeMy theme this year is Unsolved Mysteries. Today's letter is:




Like Maura Murray, Leah Roberts was a college student on a road trip when she disappeared. She told no one where she was going.



Leah left her home in Durham, North Carolina on March 9, 2000. Her sister found a note she'd left for her roommate, which included a doodle of a cheshire cat.



Inside the letter, there was a stack of cash, stating that the money was to cover bills while she was gone. There was enough money to last a month. The note had several strange, cryptic messages in it, including one referencing Jack Kerouac and his well-known book On the Road.



Friends took this as a sign she wanted to do like Jack Kerouac did--hit the open road in search of enlightenment. She stressed in the letter she was not suicidal.


Photo credit: Disappeared, Discovery ID

On March 10, Leah checked into a hotel in Memphis, Tennessee. After that, she only used her card to buy gas. The last transaction was March 13 in Brooks, Oregon.

On March 18, Leah's Jeep Cherokee was discovered down an embankment in Bellingham, Washington. The blown-out windows were covered with sheets and blankets.


Photo credit: Disappeared, Discovery ID

Leah Roberts was never found.



In the car was a ticket stub for the March 13th showing of American Beauty at a nearby mall. Police traced her activities to a nearby restaurant, where two men said they'd sat at a counter with her, discussing her plans. 

One of the men said she left with a man named Barry. This was the police sketch of Barry.


Photo credit: Disappeared, Discovery ID

Perhaps spookiest of all was footage from the convenience store in Oregon where Leah had last used her card to buy gas. The footage showed Leah alone, waiting for the clerk to ring her up. She repeatedly walks to the door to look out. Could she have been nervously checking on someone waiting for her outside?



What do you think happened to Leah Roberts?

⬅️ K Is for Korrina Sagers Malinoski

49 comments:

  1. Someone featured that author this week.
    Again, I think she's buried somewhere, dead.
    This is why I get nervous when my wife travels alone, even just to the store.

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    1. Interesting. If someone else is doing these types of stories, I'd love to read them. If you check back and know, send the link. There are so many A to Z participants, I'm barely making a dent in the reading list each week.

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  2. Sounds like she ran into a shady character. It's so sad a woman can't go off on her own without having to worry about someone intending harm. Having the windows covered suggests to me something else horrible happened before she was killed, possibly murdered.

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    1. I was watching something about a serial killer of career women in NY in the 60s and they were talking about how women had just gotten to the point where they could go out on their own. Before that, women lived at home with their parents until they got married. I was thinking maybe that was a bit overprotective, but look at all of the bad things that happen to women out there.

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  3. Definitely sounds like she fell in with the wrong person or persons along the way. Sad that so many questions remain.

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  4. I think like Alex that she was killed and is buried somewhere with other unfortunate women. The world is full of maniacs just waiting to pounce on easy prey. It's not safe for a lady to go out alone any more.

    Hugs,
    JB

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  5. These stories just highlight the randomness of life. People plucked out of normal situations never to be seen again. It is so sad but I think she surely ran into a predator and the predator won.

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  6. Unfortunate! Likely she was waiting on someone...maybe someone impatient. Maybe a killer someone. To think she only wanted a vacation, clear her head perhaps (she sounded troubled)...that's the saddest part.

    Either she's dead or she's living another life somewhere. A part of me (no matter how sick I think it would be) would like to think it's the latter.

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  7. Oh dear. Sounds like she met the wrong person. Another sad ending (most likely) to a promising life.

    I'd highly recommend Kiawah. We like to bike, play on the beach, and swim in the pools, but it is also a great place for golfers.

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  8. I'd have to agree with some of the other commenters - it sounds like she hooked up with the wrong person. It's scary to think about how among the seemingly normal people you meet every day, there lurks someone who isn't quite normal and does preys on other people.

    Cheers - Ellen | http://thecynicalsailor.blogspot.com/2016/04/l-is-for-lazy-jacks-nancy-drew.html

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  9. I watched a real life crime story on television similar to this and even creepier that lady also was acting nervous at a gas station. She was later killed and sadly I think something similar happened to this young woman.

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  10. Even more stories I didn't know about. I too agree that she may have hooked up wit the wrong person. It's sad how something like that can happen.

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  11. I don't know why I think this, but I feel like she was already in a sad situation the way she left the note and took off to be by herself particularly since she felt the need to emphasize that she wasn't suicidal.
    And then to probably meet a predator.
    I don't like the idea of a woman not being able to enjoy a solitary road trip like a man might, but the odds are definitely more against her.

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  12. sounds to me like a fun adventure that went horribly wrong. Too trusting along the way and bad things happened. Such a shame

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  13. I'm sure there was foul play involved. I'm sure enjoying your A to Z Challenge. You've covered stories I knew about, but mostly you've covered stories I didn't know about.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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  14. Reading these are like watching a Dateline short film every day...so sad!

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  15. Sounds to me like she picked the wrong travelling companion or gained a stalker along the way.
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

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  16. I love reading comments about what people think may have happened. Such great theories. It could be so many things...murdered, taken, left...but regardless very creepy. You never know who to trust. Can't wait for the next one. I have to say the one about the two girls hiking in Panama has stuck with me. So haunting.

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  17. Stories like this are why I remind myself to always let people know where I'm going––which I don't always do, especially if I'm feeling cranky and want to be left alone.

    ~Ninja Minion Patricia Lynne aka Patricia Josephine~
    Story Dam
    Patricia Lynne, Indie Author

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  18. What happened to her? I'm sure she's dead. What a horrible story.

    Piper Presley
    L is for Love: Blogging from A to Z Challenge

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  19. Sometimes I think back to some of the people I didn't know all that well and trusted. Something bad could have happened. Sounds like nothing good happened to her.

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  20. These posts are a frightening reminder that the world we live in is a dangerous place. No doubt Leah is dead and that's a truly sad thing. Thanks for sharing. https://mhsusannematthews.wordpress.com/

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  21. I have no idea--another sad story leaving a family wondering.

    When you get to the "R's" will you write about disappearing Republican candidates? Borowitz, in his satire, recently had a report about Christie's disappearance.

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  22. This is hurting. Since I have been living out of my own country and living in Europe, I didn't know this. That is very hard for the parents.
    Shalom.
    Patricia EverythingMustChange

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  23. It is incredible how anyone can just disappear like that. I agree, she may well be dead, but one can never be sure.

    JO ON FOOD, LIFE AND A SCENT OF CHOCOLATE

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  24. Sadly, while her note said she was not suicidal, it seems likely her behaviour was. A variation on suicide by cop. Suicide by inattentiveness to safety...

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  25. That is another super-freaky one. The ones where the people just disappear without a trace are the scariest. I have to say that some of these are giving me great story ideas! :)

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  26. Who knows on that one

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  27. All these missing girls! It's so sad.

    Yvonne V

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  28. There are a lot of shady people here in Oregon and Washington, but thankfully there are a lot of good people too. Unfortunately, I'm guessing she met up with a not so great person.

    Mary
    #AtoZChallenge L is for Loretta Lynn

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  29. There's so much of this crap goin on out there when are girls goin' to smartin' up??? I wouldn't do no crap like that .

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  30. These unsolved mysteries give me the creeps!! Glad to found your blog through a-z challenge. I'm in TN too< woot!

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  31. Sadly I think whoever she was checking on outside the gas station is the only person who knows. What a sad story, with an amazing adventure turning to tragedy.

    @IsaLeeWolf
    A Bit to Read

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  32. Scary. I'm surprised that these women (Leah and previous disappearances) don't leave any info behind as to where they'll be and how to reach them. The outcome probably isn't good. :-(

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  33. Another story that makes me not to go anywhere alone. Yes, I'm a coward. But you don't know what, who is out there.

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  34. She wanted to experience life and got together with the wrong guy. One day they will find her body, I fear.

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  35. She met up with the wrong people-poor Leah~ So, scary to imagine being on the open road-alone!

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  36. I don't know what had happened, but I'm sure this must be very rough for her family and friends.

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  37. I'm sure it's a sad ending :( I agree with a few comments above, this reiterates the reason I avoid traveling alone.

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  38. Another intriguing one, you have found some really good ones! This is another one where I would assume she had been killed, but it's so strange that her body was never found. Maybe she is still alive somewhere with a fake identity!
    Debbie

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  39. It's so unfair that women are targets. We need to be stronger, better equipped, somehow, so that we can live an adventurous life without fear of being killed. So sad.
    Mary at Play off the Page

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  40. It would seem she was nervous about something at the convenience store. I feel like she knew she was taking a dangerous chance - but what was it?

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  41. My guess is they will find a body some day. The convenience store may have been her one chance to seek help. So often people do not trust their instincts. I went to College in Bellingham so this is all the more creepy!

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  42. So sad. Interesting topic for the challenge. Thanks for sharing.

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