Every Monday, I'm presenting a new mystery. Some have been solved...some remain unsolved to this day.
Today's mystery was requested by the lovely Military Wife. (Her blog is a blast, if you don't already read it!) It surrounds the mystery of the sudden disappearance of this woman:
Her behavior throughout her time at Geoffrey's was bizarre, to say the least. It started with the valet, who came back from parking a car to find her car empty. Mitrice was in the valet's car, going through his CD collection. She spoke in full sentences, but used words that didn't make sense within those sentences. She left his car and went into the restaurant.
Inside the restaurant, she asked for a table, where she ordered a cocktail and a $65 steak.
She suddenly asked to join a large party seated nearby. Once at the table, she began rambling about astrological signs and telling people her mom was Mother Earth. After the party was gone, she tried to leave without paying, at which point she casually admitted she couldn't pay. She had the restaurant call her great-grandmother, who offered to give her credit card number over the phone. They wouldn't take it, telling her she would have to show up in person.
Even though staff members offered to pitch in and pay her bill, the restaurant owner decided to call the police, perhaps because of her erratic behavior. Maybe it seemed she'd be safer in police custody than out on her own...
The police gave her a sobriety test and determined she was sober. Going through her car, they found some marijuana, which she admitted was hers, and arrested her for "defrauding an innkeeper" and possession of marijuana (a misdemeanor). This is her mugshot:
Soon after, Mitrice's mom found out about the incident and called the restaurant. They told her what happened. She called the sheriff's department and was assured that they would have Mitrice call when she got there. They never did. Her mom had a young child sleeping at home and couldn't leave.
After booking her, they released her at 12:30 a.m. with no car and no way to get home. They said they had "no reason to hold her" and she showed no signs of incapacitation.
Later that morning, a resident in Monte Nido, California (six miles from the station) called to say he'd found a young woman sitting in his back yard. When he asked if she was okay, she said she was just resting. When he looked out another window, she was gone. Her description fit Mitrice's. That was the only known sighting of her.
Search dogs picked up her scent there and followed it to a nearby home. It faded there. They found footprints that appeared to be from her sneakers and determined that the wearer of those shoes was first walking, then running. The shoeprints disappeared suddenly.
Eleven months later, Mitrice's body was found in a creek bed near a ranch that is reportedly a pornography production location. Rocks nearby had graffiti that had recently been sprayed on them. The graffiti depicted naked drawings of an African-American woman. Her body was found in Monte Nido--the same community where the sighting had occurred.
To this day, the case has never been solved. The family has filed several lawsuits. More importantly, though, the state attorney general's office has opened an investigation into the handling of the case.
What do you think happened to Mitrice Richardson?