The Springfield Three: The Curious Case Of 3 Women Disappearing At The Same Time

All three of their cars were parked in front of a house. Their purses, makeup and keys were still inside. 

By Gina Tron

The Disappearance of Natalee Holloway premieres Saturday, August 19 at 7/6c and 9/8c.

How can three women go missing at the same time? That is what Springfield, Missouri residents have been wondering since 1992.

Sherrill Levitt, a 47-year-old mother, was with her 19-year-old daughter Suzie Streeter and Suzie’s 18-year-old friend Stacy McCall when they suddently disappeared on June 7, 1992. All three of their cars were parked out front of Levitt’s home. Their purses, makeup and keys were in the home. So was Stacy’s medication and Sherrill’s cigarettes. The two teens had just graduated high school one day earlier and they had changed and gotten ready for bed.

The teens were supposed to go to a waterpark with their friend Janelle Kirby the next day. She called the house and eventually went over with her boyfriend when there was no answer. They saw that the porch light was broken and they swept up the glass, not realizing that it was a part of a crime scene. Besides the porch light, nothing else seemed out of place. There were no signs of foul play or a struggle. The door was unlocked. While in the home, the landline phone rang and Janelle answered. The caller made lewd sexual comments, and Janelle hung up, assuming it was a prank call.

“How do you wrap your head around three people literally disappearing? With no idea where they went?” Sgt. Todd King told the Kansas City Star. “In a lot of cold cases, you can look back and say this is probably what occurred, you just can’t prove it. With this case, it’s anything goes. Anything could have happened.”

Leads still trickle in, about once a month, but so far they have led nowhere.

“We all who love them would love to have answers, would love to know what happened, would love to have them here with us today,” Nigel Holderby said. She was Suzie’s best friend. “All over this period of time we have wondered every day and every year. It is mind-blowing to think about, something like that happening. People aren’t supposed to just disappear.”

In 1997, an incarcerated man named Robert Craig Cox claimed he knew that the three women were murdered and that their bodies would never be recovered. He said he would reveal how they were killed after his mother died. Cox was in jail for kidnapping and robbery and he was a suspect in a Florida murder. He lived in Springfield in 1992 and he had previously worked with Stacy’s father. Cox’s girlfriend had corroborated his alibi at the time of the crime but years later, she said she lied. It was a promising lead, but police thought he may have been giving false statements. He was a known-attention seeker. They had no evidence to charge him with anything and eventually the lead went cold.

Investigators received a tip that the three women were dead and  buried in the foundations of a hospital parking garage. In 2007, Rick Norland, a mechanical engineer, scanned the parking lot with ground-penetrating radar and he found three anomalies that were all about the same size. He said that the anomalies  were consistent with a "grave site location,” but the Springfield Police Department did not believe test was conclusive enough to justify tearing up the concrete. Police added that the parking garage was constructed a year after the women went missing.

The women were declared legally dead in 1997 but their case files are still filed under “missing.” And, what happened to them has continued to remain a mystery.


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