Jessica Heeringa kidnapping

posted in: kidnappings, Missing persons | 11

Facts on the Jessica Heeringa abduction that I’ve gathered and consolidated from mulitple sites – if I miss a citation on where I get these from, just leave a comment.

Timeline and information on Jessica Herringa abduction

Here’s some information that was released on Jessica Heeringa’s abduction, updated timeline, some links, and most likely scenario.  Leave a comment if you have a different idea of what happened, or a correction on anything, or whatever else.

Updated timeline of Jessica Heeringa’s abduction

UPDATED Timeline: Some additional details police released on the timeline

  • 2:44 p.m.: Heeringa purchased groceries at Aldi, 2715 Henry St.
    4:35 p.m.: Heeringa begins her shift at the Exxon store.
  • 7:30 – 8:15 p.m.: Man arrives at the gas station in a work vehicle which is a silver full sized van.  This same man in later talking to police, claims to be JH’s current boyfriend.  (Btw, this man is not her fiance Dakotah Quail-Dyer)
  • 7:30 to 8:15 Man and JH talk about their relationship according to witness
  • Customer witnesses that JH appears to be upset after the conversation
  • 7:40 – 8:50
    • 7:40 Female friend arrives at through the front door to visit JK – nothing suspicious is noticed by her.
    • Friend and a male customer see bluish silver van pull up to Heeringa while she was changing receipt papers at a pump.  It appeared to them that Heeringa had a friendly conversation with him.
  • 10:55 p.m.: A female customer arrives and purchases a lighter. Heeringa mentions working alone that night. Customer states that she did not appear to be nervous/distressed. Customer states that she did not see anyone in the store or parking lot.
  • 11 p.m.: Manager of the gas station and her husband are riding motorcycles eastbound on Sternberg Road (road gas station is on).  All of their accounts below I’ll use green font
    • The female manager notices silver minivan slowly enter the north drive of the Exxon station from the service drive of the Pointes Mall.  Van drives behind the Exxon station, does a u-turn, and turned off its headlights as it pulled behind the store facing west (facing Grand Haven Road).
    • Manager states that she suspected Heeringa may be in the process of stealing from Exxon, so she turned around on Harvey Street to return to the store.
    • The manager and her husband drove to the Pointes Mall, west of the Exxon station, and parked in the lot with a view of the north and west sides of the Exxon station. The minivan was parked on the north side of the Exxon station and there were no other vehicles in the lot except for Heeringa’s.
    • The manager saw a figure of a person standing at the rear of the van and noticed the van’s rear hatch was open. The person shut the rear hatch and quickly opened it again. It appeared as though the figure was adjusting something in the rear of the van, and then closed the hatch again. She noted that the person’s head was just above the roof of the van.  The person then walked to driver side door and drove westbound on the service drive.
    • Store’s rear security light was not on and the store’s rear door did not open at any time. She never saw a struggle or heard anyone yell for help. She did not see Heeringa outside of the store.
    • As the van drove closer to their location in the parking lot, the manager and her husband started their motorcycles and pulled up to the service drive. As the van passed, she looked at the driver, a male subject wearing a red or orange sweatshirt. Her husband stated that he did not see the subject well, but did see that he had “crazy” or wavy hair. Neither of them saw Heeringa or anyone else in the van.
    • The manager and her husband pulled onto the service drive and followed the van until it stopped at Grand Haven Road. The manager’s husband stated that he was positive the van was a Chrysler Town and Country van, silver in color, as it was the same type a relative owned (Note: This vehicle was located and was in Traverse City at the time of the abduction). He clearly remembered the Town and Country logo on the rear hatch door. Neither obtained the license plate number, as they had no reason to believe a crime had occurred.
    • The van turned northbound on Grand Haven Road, while the manager and her husband turned southbound on Grand Haven Road and went home.
    • 11:02 p.m: Surveillance video from inside of a closed store in the Pointes Mall captured a silver minivan turning northbound onto Grand Haven Road. (this would back up the manager and her husband’s account, not to mention the videos of the silver van at Old Homestead and Coin Zone.
    • 11:03 p.m: Surveillance video from the Homestead Tavern captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
    • 11:05 p.m: Surveillance video from the Coin Zone captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
    • 11:10 p.m: A male customer arrived at the gas station, pulled up to the pump and attempted to purchase gasoline. He was unable to do so as the pump would not activate. When the pump did not activate, he entered the store believing that the clerk may have been in the back room and not aware of his presence at the pump. He was unable to locate Heeringa. Upon exiting the store, he spoke with a female customer and called 911.
    • 11:15 p.m.: Patrol units dispatched to Exxon, 1196 E Sternberg Road, Norton Shores, regarding a suspicious situation.
    • 11:25 p.m.: The first officer arrives and begins investigation. Officers searched the store but did not locate Heeringa. Officers located Heeringa’s purse and jacket in the back room. The purse contained $420 in cash. Officers noted that nothing inside the store indicated a struggle. There was nothing that appeared to be disturbed. Officers exited the rear door and noted that the door did not have a handle on the outside.
    • Officers located items of possible evidence outside the rear door, including what appeared to be a 2-inch by 3-inch blood stain on the concrete, later determined to be Heeringa’s. Officers photographed the interior and exterior of the store and evidence items prior to collection. Officers collected a sample of the possible blood stain and packaged the other evidence items.
    • 11.38 p.m.: Exxon owner was contacted regarding the open store. He in turn contacted the day-shift manager to respond as she lives closer to the store.
    • 11:50 p.m.: The day-shift manager arrives at the Exxon station and provides officers with her observations (mentioned above) of the silver minivan and its driver.
    • The manager advised that the cash drawer was “counted down” for the next shift, indicating Heeringa was preparing to close the store at the time she disappeared.
    • While talking to officers, the manager observed the man claiming to be Heeringa’s boyfriend drive past the store in a work vehicle. He was contacted to come to the Exxon station and was questioned by officers.

What I make of all this:

One, I don’t think its a coincidence that this person claiming to be her boyfriend has a vehicle matching that of the vehicle believed to be the getaway vehicle

Two, the fact that he drove by soon after the manager and police were talking is suspicious

And this seals it for me..  The person that claims to be her boyfriend is seen a few times that day, one time talking about their relationship, he has a work vehicle matching the description.. and shows up after she disappears in a different work vehicle ( I assume it is different or I think that would have been a pertinent fact saying he returned in a vehicle matching the description)..  And so anyway.. he drives by the gas station after she shows up missing while manager and cops are talking and he doesn’t stop to check up on his girlfriend as he claims.. instead, the manager needs to tell the police that he’s supposedly her boyfriend and was seen their earlier..   It wasn’t him at all concerned about Jessica and rushing right to the gas station after seeing police like any decent boyfriend would do..

Not this guy.. he doesn’t stop (not to mention the fact that its pretty suspicious that he would be back in that area at all, if not to check on things (maybe turn off the lights of the store to cover up a crime?)  But he probably about shit himself when he saw the police were already there.

A few other things:

According to google its 1.6 miles from where vehicle was first seen at the mall to the last recording of it at the Coin Zone; and according to the times given, it took 3 minutes for him.  So I would think he was going at a steady pace under the speed limit.  I believe it is 35mph limit there, but it could be 30; if it’s 30 he’d be speeding some according to the timeline and google maps.

 

As of April 29th, 2014 the reward for information about her abduction is at $25,000

  • Jessica Heeringa goes missing from the gas station she works at on Friday April 26, 2013.
  • Left car, purse, and cell phone at the gas station
  • Last seen at 10:52 p.m. at the gas station
  • No sign of robbery inside the store
  • Customer calls police after trying to pay for his gas and notices there is no employee at the store, yet the car is there, and the lights are on and its still during operating hours.  For the 911 call – http://www.usatoday.com/videos/news/2013/04/30/2123169/)

Gas station has no security cameras

There were two businesses in the area on Grand Haven Road that showed a silver Town and country heading north bound

  • 11:03 p.m: video from the old Homestead Tavern showed a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
  • 11:05 p.m: Surveillance video from the Coin Zone captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.

Despite the nationwide media attention, no one has come forward to claim they were driving a similar vehicle around that time, on that day.. So with high likelihood you can say that that vehicle is the getaway vehicle and that Jessica had to be in it at the time it drove by because:

  • the window of time was too small from the time of her last recorded sale and the video of the Silver mini van for her to really go anywhere else

At 11:10 customer arrives at gas station to get gas but pump wouldn’t activate.  Went into the store, and couldn’t find JH in the store.  Talks with a female customer who arrives as he was exiting the store and calls 911.

A West Michigan police official told CBS News that he believes investigators will find her, even with the limited evidence in the case.

The driver of the van has been described by witnesses as a white male, between the ages of 30 and 40, about 6 feet tall, with light brown wavy hair. Heeringa has been described by police as 5-foot-1, weighing about 110 pounds, with blonde, shoulder-length hair, blue eyes and white-rimmed glasses. She may be wearing a blue-collared shirt that says Sternberg Exxon.

via Jessica Heeringa Update: Police Release Surveillance Footage Of Van, 911 Call In Missing Mom Case.

Some additional facts on Jessica Heeringa

25 years old

mother of one son

Last seen at 10:52 p.m.at Exxon gas station in Muskegon, Michigan. The fact that her purse was left, with all of its belongings still there, including $420 in cash, makes it likely that she didn’t simply run away. There were no security cameras in the gas station, and if she was taken by someone, they probably were aware of that.

Aware the store did not have cameras and would mention this to customers from time to time, as well as the fact she was working alone. According to Reddit: http://www.reddit.com/r/UnresolvedMysteries/comments/28z4q2/the_disappearance_of_jessica_heeringa/

She was not worried about the lack of cameras.

JH would often open the rear door of the gas station, turn off the store’s rear security light, and smoke cigarettes.  At times she would allow friends to enter via the rear door according to police.
7:30 – 8:15 p.m.: A man who told police he was Heeringa’s boyfriend at the time (*Not to be confused with her fiance, Dakotah Quail-Dyer) arrived at the Exxon station in a work vehicle, a silver full-size van. The two reportedly had a discussion regarding their alleged relationship.
A customer advised that Heeringa appeared to be upset after the conversation with the male subject.
7:40 – 8:50 p.m.: A female friend entered the store through the front door to visit Heeringa. Nothing suspicious was noticed at that time.
Both the female friend and a male customer observed a bluish silver van pull up to Heeringa while she was changing the receipt paper in one of the pumps. It appeared that the male driver and Heeringa were having a friendly conversation.
10:55 p.m.: A female customer entered the store and purchased a lighter. She advised that Heeringa was alone in the store and did not appear to be nervous or distressed. The customer did not see anyone in the store or in the parking lot.
11 p.m.: An Exxon manager and her husband were riding their motorcycles eastbound on Sternberg Road.
She saw a silver minivan slowly enter the north drive of the Exxon station from the service drive of the Pointes Mall.
The van drove behind the Exxon station, did a u-turn and extinguished its headlights as it pulled behind the store facing west.
The manager suspected Heeringa may be in the process of stealing from Exxon, so she turned around on Harvey Street to return to the store.
The manager and her husband drove to the Pointes Mall, west of the Exxon station, and parked in the lot with a view of the north and west sides of the Exxon station. The minivan was parked on the north side of the Exxon station.
There were no other vehicles in the lot except for Heeringa’s.
The manager saw a figure standing at the rear of the van and noticed the van’s rear hatch was open. The figure shut the rear hatch and quickly opened it again. It appeared as though the figure was adjusting something in the rear of the van, and then closed the hatch again. She noted that the person’s head was just above the roof of the van.
The person then walked to the driver’s door, got into the van and began driving westbound on the service drive.
The manager said the store’s rear security light was not on and the store’s rear door did not open at any time. She never saw a struggle or heard anyone yell for help. She did not see Heeringa outside of the store.
As the van drove closer to their location in the parking lot, the manager and her husband started their motorcycles and pulled up to the service drive. As the van passed, she looked at the driver, a male subject wearing a red or orange sweatshirt. Her husband stated that he did not see the subject well, but did see that he had “crazy” or wavy hair. Neither of them saw Heeringa or anyone else in the van.
The manager and her husband pulled onto the service drive and followed the van until it stopped at Grand Haven Road. The manager’s husband stated that he was positive the van was a Chrysler Town and Country van, silver in color, as it was the same type a relative owned (Note: This vehicle was located and was in Traverse City at the time of the abduction). He clearly remembered the Town and Country logo on the rear hatch door. Neither obtained the license plate number, as they had no reason to believe a crime had occurred.
The van turned northbound on Grand Haven Road, while the manager and her husband turned southbound on Grand Haven Road and went home.
11:02 p.m: Surveillance video from inside of a closed store in the Pointes Mall captured a silver minivan turning northbound onto Grand Haven Road.
11:03 p.m: Surveillance video from the Homestead Tavern captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
11:05 p.m: Surveillance video from the Coin Zone captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
11:10 p.m: A male customer arrived at the gas station, pulled up to the pump and attempted to purchase gasoline. He was unable to do so as the pump would not activate. When the pump did not activate, he entered the store believing that the clerk may have been in the back room and not aware of his presence at the pump. He was unable to locate Heeringa. Upon exiting the store, he spoke with a female customer and called 911.
11:15 p.m.: Patrol units are dispatched to Exxon, 1196 E Sternberg Road, Norton Shores, regarding a suspicious situation.
11:25 p.m.: The first officer arrives and begins investigation. Officers searched the store but did not locate Heeringa. Officers located Heeringa’s purse and jacket in the back room. The purse contained $420 in cash. Officers noted that nothing inside the store indicated a struggle. There was nothing that appeared to be disturbed. Officers exited the rear door and noted that the door did not have a handle on the outside.
Officers located items of possible evidence outside the rear door, including what appeared to be a 2-inch by 3-inch blood stain on the concrete, later determined to be Heeringa’s. Officers photographed the interior and exterior of the store and evidence items prior to collection. Officers collected a sample of the possible blood stain and packaged the other evidence items.
11.38 p.m.: Exxon owner was contacted regarding the open store. He in turn contacted the day-shift manager to respond as she lives closer to the store.
11:50 p.m.: The day-shift manager arrives at the Exxon station and provides officers with her observations of the silver minivan and its driver.
The manager advised that the cash drawer was “counted down” for the next shift, indicating Heeringa was preparing to close the store. While talking to officers, the manager observed the man claiming to be Heeringa’s boyfriend drive past the store in a work vehicle. He was contacted to come to the Exxon station and was questioned by officers.
Points that stand out from all this:
The bloodstain that was later identified to be Heeringa’s. Clearly a sign of a struggle.
The person who took her very likely knew that she would step out behind the station to smoke and that is when they ambushed her.
One of the Exxon’s managers and her husband happened to be riding their motorcycles around the area near the time that Heeringa went missing. They saw the suspect’s van with it’s lights off parked in the back of the store and believed Heeringa might be working with an accomplice to steal stuff from the station. They decided to follow the van for a while as it left the gas station. Clearly they thought the person in this van was up to something, and yet “Neither obtained the license plate number, as they had no reason to believe a crime had occurred.” Why follow him then?
She might have been seeing another man behind her fiance’s back. What was their conversation that evening about that caused her to appear upset? The man that alleged himself to be her boyfriend is later identified by the store’s manager as he is driving past the scene while all the officers are there.

 

Fiance and Father of Jessica Heeringa’s child arrested for drug charges | MLive.com

 

The fiancé of Jessica Heeringa, the Muskegon woman who has been missing for over a year, has been charged with three felony drug charges.

Dakotah Wakan Quail-Dyer, 30, was arraigned in Muskegon County 60th District Court Thursday, June 19, on three counts of controlled substance delivery/manufacturing, marijuana, a felony.

What a lowlife!  What kind of human would put his child’s future and security in jeopardy after already having already gone through the pain of a mother who is most likely dead..  How could he do this to his own kid??  Usually you hear stories of single parents taking 2 jobs, and night classes and finding a way to get more education; not this idiot!  He’s slingin’ drugs and now going before the judge saying he needs to be their for his kid.. lol.  Yeah, that’s what you should have said to yourself before you did what you did… again, he’s an IDIOT!

via Father of Jessica Heeringa’s child arrested for drug charges | MLive.com.

The fiancé of Jessica Heeringa, the Muskegon woman who has been missing for over a year, has been charged with three felony drug charges.

Dakotah Wakan Quail-Dyer, 30, was arraigned in Muskegon County 60th District Court Thursday, June 19, on three counts of controlled substance delivery/manufacturing, marijuana, a felony.

via Father of Jessica Heeringa’s child arrested for drug charges | MLive.com.

 

Stranger abductions are not as common as people may think. This is why when Jessica Heeringa disappeared from her job as a gas station clerk in Michigan on April 26, 2013 – the public took notice and so did the national media. I can confirm a witness says there was a suspicious man in the area at the time Jessica vanished, police released a sketch of this man in hopes to identify him.

Police continue to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a young woman who went missing 11 months ago.
Jessica Heeringa, who was 25 years old at the time, went missing on April 26, 2013. She was allegedly abducted while working as a clerk at an Exxon gas station in Norton Shores, Michigan, around 11pm, according to mlive.com.
Norton Shores Police Chief Dan Shaw told the website no one has yet come forward saying they witnessed an abduction. A suspicious vehicle, however, was described by one witness.

Jessica Heeringa Muskegon Michigan

‘The witness who observed the silver mini-van and its driver did not see Jessica at any time,’ Shaw said. ‘The witness was not aware of Jessica’s abduction until officers began their initial investigation, therefore, had no reason to believe the van was involved in a crime or to take additional actions, like call 911.’
Shaw also said that investigators believe the silver Chrysler Town and Country mini-van spotted may still be involved.
‘Based on the fact the driver has not been identified and the van’s departure from the Exxon store is within the timeline of Jessica’s disappearance, investigators still believe it may be involved,’ he said.
The driver is reportedly a 6-foot-tall white man, who may be between 30 and 40 years old. He has a medium to heavy build with broad shoulders and light brown or blond wavy hair with a center part, the website reports.

Heeringa is mother to son Zeven, 4, but he is no longer in contact with her family, Fox17 reported.
Heeringa is also unlikely to have faked an abduction, Shaw said — since her blood was found at the scene as well as hundreds of dollars.

‘Based on evidence obtained at the scene, including Jessica’s blood from the pavement outside of the store, the fact that hundreds of dollars in cash [both Jessica’s and the store’s] was left behind and based on behavioral information we have developed during the investigation, it is highly unlikely that she is intentionally missing,’ Shaw told mlive.com.
Shaw also said the case is the department’s ‘top priority.’

More…
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Former members of a task force that was formed to pursue the case after Heeringa vanished continue to work together, Shaw said. The task force included police in Muskegon, the Muskegon County sheriff’s department, state police and federal officials.
‘Members of the former task force have met on several occasions to review information received and the investigative reports compiled since it was disbanded to help ensure a comprehensive review has been conducted,’ Shaw said.
The reward for information is up to $15,160. Anyone with tips is asked to contact either Silent Observer at 231-722-7463 or the Norton Shores Police Department at 231-733-269

Jessica Heeringa Missing person poster
Jessica Heeringa Missing person poster

When I spoke with Norton Shores Police Chief Daniel Shaw, he says it’s possible a silver Chrysler mini-van was also seen in the area around the same time Jessica vanished. The witness who described the van specifically as a Chrysler Town and Country is important to this case because the witness says their relative has the same one.

Suspect Sketch
Norton Shores Police Department

Jessica was last seen at the Exxon Mobile gas station on Sternberg Road in Norton Shores between 10:50 – 11:00 p.m. on the 26th. A customer called 911 to say they thought it was odd no one was at the gas station when he pulled up and he couldn’t find anyone to turn the pump on. Jessica has been working at the gas station for about a year. The police chief says, from all accounts, Jessica loved her job and would not have walked away on her own — not to mention, she left some important items behind.

Cops still searching for missing Michigan mom 11 months after she was ‘abducted’

  • Jessica Heeringa went missing on April 26, 2013
  • Allegedly abducted while working night shift as a clerk at Exxon gas station
  • Witness reported seeing ‘suspicious van’ around the time of her disappearance
  • Driver is 6-foot-tall white man who looks to be in his 30s or 40s with light-coloured sandy hair and broad shoulders
  • Heeringa’s blood was found outside the store and hundreds of dollars were left behind at the scene
  • Heeringa is mother to Zeven,

These are the five things you need to know about the Jessica Heeringa case.

1) Chief Shaw told me Jessica is very sociable, outgoing and very kind. There is a lack of evidence of a struggle from inside the building. Also, Jessica’s purse was left inside the station, along with $420, her jacket, keys to her car and her vehicle was still in the parking lot. The chief believes based on her personality, Jessica may know her abductor in one way or another – the suspect could possibly be a customer or acquaintance from visiting the store. Jessica could have been lured outside the building because she recognized the man.

2) Chief Shaw also said numerous people have been cleared, or are “no longer the focus of the investigation” – those people include, but are not limited to, Jessica’s current fiancé, a former boyfriend, two acquaintances, the owner of the gas station and a person who was driving a sliver van resembling the one last seen in the area before Jessica went missing.

3) I have confirmed there are 35,000 silver/gray Chrysler mini-vans in the area, and investigators are doing their best to work through those vehicles along with tracking down numerous other leads. Many searches are taking place, including some of those at a nearby state park.

4) Two pieces of surveillance from the area have been released. One is from a bar, half mile north from the crime scene. At 11:03 p.m. you can briefly see a silver-minivan driving down the road, this piece of video is poor quality. Only one minute later, at 11:04 p.m., one full mile from where Jessica went missing, there is another piece of video of the same mini-van the vehicle is seen passing a coin shop. The vehicle was driving northbound and its quality is a little better.

5) Chief Shaw says since January 1, 2009 to the date Jessica went missing, there have been 34 calls for incidents at that gas station. He confirms about half are from accident reports and a few others are from “suspicious activity” (one incident involved a possible heroin overdose and medics were called). Chief says he does not think in any of the calls anyone called to report anything suspicious with a gray mini-van or that any of them could have ties to Jessica’s disappearance.

6) Jessica is a mom, she has a 3-year-old son and a fiancé. Her family is devastated and there have been candlelight vigils and searches to find her. I can confirm investigators currently have Jessica’s hairbrush and toothbrush, along with her parents DNA in their system. Chief Shaw says from what he has learned, there is no way Jessica would leave her family behind — that combined with the other evidence is why he is treating this as an abduction.

About 24,000 residents live in the Norton Shores area and there are many local investigative agencies, including the Michigan State police who are assisting in this investigation. Chief Shaw says about 40-50 investigators at any point and time, especially for the first week, are assigned to tracking down information, interviewing possible witnesses or people with information and working hard on this case.

Jessica is known to have a “lazy eye” and wears glasses, she was last seen wearing a black tank top under her Exxon mobile shirt, along with boots. She has a number of tattoos.

If you know anything, please give investigators a call: 231-733-2691

via Missing Michigan Mom: 5 Things You Need To Know : Investigation Discovery.

Jessica Heeringa Timeline

NORTON SHORES, MI — As the one-year anniversary of the disappearance of Jessica Heeringa approaches, authorities are sharing never-before-released details of the hours prior to her final shift at the Exxon gas station where authorities say she was abducted.

Heeringa, 26, has been missing since April 26, 2013. The one-year anniversary is Saturday.

Police also released crime-scene photos showing that there was likely no struggle inside the station in the moments before she was taken.

Here’s the timeline, released by the Norton Shores Police Department:

back room at exxon.jpg
This is the backroom inside the Exxon station on Sternberg Road. This photo was taken by police the night she was allegedly abducted. Nothing seemed to be out of place, police said.
Norton Shores Police Department

April 26, 2013:

2:44 p.m.: Heeringa purchased groceries at Aldi, 2715 Henry St.
4:35 p.m.: Heeringa begins her shift at the Exxon store. She was aware the store did not have video cameras, as she had advised customers of this and the fact she was working alone. She was not worried about the lack of cameras. It was not uncommon for Heeringa to prop open the rear door and turn off the store’s rear security light so she could smoke cigarettes behind the store or allow friends to enter via the rear door, according to police.
7:30 – 8:15 p.m.: A man who told police he was Heeringa’s boyfriend at the time (*Not to be confused with her fiance, Dakotah Quail-Dyer) arrived at the Exxon station in a work vehicle, a silver full-size van. The two reportedly had a discussion regarding their alleged relationship.
A customer advised that Heeringa appeared to be upset after the conversation with the male subject.
7:40 – 8:50 p.m.: A female friend entered the store through the front door to visit Heeringa. Nothing suspicious was noticed at that time.
Both the female friend and a male customer observed a bluish silver van pull up to Heeringa while she was changing the receipt paper in one of the pumps. It appeared that the male driver and Heeringa were having a friendly conversation.
10:55 p.m.: A female customer entered the store and purchased a lighter. She advised that Heeringa was alone in the store and did not appear to be nervous or distressed. The customer did not see anyone in the store or in the parking lot.
11 p.m.: An Exxon manager and her husband were riding their motorcycles eastbound on Sternberg Road.
She saw a silver minivan slowly enter the north drive of the Exxon station from the service drive of the Pointes Mall.
The van drove behind the Exxon station, did a u-turn and extinguished its headlights as it pulled behind the store facing west.
The manager suspected Heeringa may be in the process of stealing from Exxon, so she turned around on Harvey Street to return to the store.
The manager and her husband drove to the Pointes Mall, west of the Exxon station, and parked in the lot with a view of the north and west sides of the Exxon station. The minivan was parked on the north side of the Exxon station.
There were no other vehicles in the lot except for Heeringa’s.
The manager saw a figure standing at the rear of the van and noticed the van’s rear hatch was open. The figure shut the rear hatch and quickly opened it again. It appeared as though the figure was adjusting something in the rear of the van, and then closed the hatch again. She noted that the person’s head was just above the roof of the van.
The person then walked to the driver’s door, got into the van and began driving westbound on the service drive.
The manager said the store’s rear security light was not on and the store’s rear door did not open at any time. She never saw a struggle or heard anyone yell for help. She did not see Heeringa outside of the store.
As the van drove closer to their location in the parking lot, the manager and her husband started their motorcycles and pulled up to the service drive. As the van passed, she looked at the driver, a male subject wearing a red or orange sweatshirt. Her husband stated that he did not see the subject well, but did see that he had “crazy” or wavy hair. Neither of them saw Heeringa or anyone else in the van.
The manager and her husband pulled onto the service drive and followed the van until it stopped at Grand Haven Road. The manager’s husband stated that he was positive the van was a Chrysler Town and Country van, silver in color, as it was the same type a relative owned (Note: This vehicle was located and was in Traverse City at the time of the abduction). He clearly remembered the Town and Country logo on the rear hatch door. Neither obtained the license plate number, as they had no reason to believe a crime had occurred.
The van turned northbound on Grand Haven Road, while the manager and her husband turned southbound on Grand Haven Road and went home.
11:02 p.m: Surveillance video from inside of a closed store in the Pointes Mall captured a silver minivan turning northbound onto Grand Haven Road.
11:03 p.m: Surveillance video from the Homestead Tavern captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
11:05 p.m: Surveillance video from the Coin Zone captured a silver minivan driving northbound on Grand Haven Road.
11:10 p.m: A male customer arrived at the gas station, pulled up to the pump and attempted to purchase gasoline. He was unable to do so as the pump would not activate. When the pump did not activate, he entered the store believing that the clerk may have been in the back room and not aware of his presence at the pump. He was unable to locate Heeringa. Upon exiting the store, he spoke with a female customer and called 911.
11:15 p.m.: Patrol units are dispatched to Exxon, 1196 E Sternberg Road, Norton Shores, regarding a suspicious situation.
11:25 p.m.: The first officer arrives and begins investigation. Officers searched the store but did not locate Heeringa. Officers located Heeringa’s purse and jacket in the back room. The purse contained $420 in cash. Officers noted that nothing inside the store indicated a struggle. There was nothing that appeared to be disturbed. Officers exited the rear door and noted that the door did not have a handle on the outside.
Officers located items of possible evidence outside the rear door, including what appeared to be a 2-inch by 3-inch blood stain on the concrete, later determined to be Heeringa’s. Officers photographed the interior and exterior of the store and evidence items prior to collection. Officers collected a sample of the possible blood stain and packaged the other evidence items.
11.38 p.m.: Exxon owner was contacted regarding the open store. He in turn contacted the day-shift manager to respond as she lives closer to the store.
11:50 p.m.: The day-shift manager arrives at the Exxon station and provides officers with her observations of the silver minivan and its driver.
The manager advised that the cash drawer was “counted down” for the next shift, indicating Heeringa was preparing to close the store. While talking to officers, the manager observed the man claiming to be Heeringa’s boyfriend drive past the store in a work vehicle. He was contacted to come to the Exxon station and was questioned by officers.
12:38 a.m.: A K-9 team requested to search area. A search of the area north and east of the store was conducted with no results.
According to the Norton Shores Police Department, the investigation hasn’t turned up anything significant in connection to her disappearance. A suspect or suspects haven’t yet been identified. But police say it’s not because of a lack of effort on their part.

Here’s a breakdown of the resources involved in the case as of Thursday, April 24:

“The subsequent investigation involved a large investigative task force, comprised of 15 federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and 14 separate specialized units (aviation, behavioral science, technical services, intelligence analysis, etc.),” according to a Norton Shores Police Department press release.

“At its peak, the investigative task force was staffed by 75 investigators. In all, investigators have devoted over 12,000 staff hours while conducting approximately 1,400 follow-up investigations based on tips and information received.”

In addition, several people were spoken to about the case, some considered persons of interest.

“A total of 33 search warrants and a minimum of 20 consensual searches have been executed. The searches were primarily conducted to recover cellular, telephone, computer and social media data; however, there were several searches of residential property for other physical evidence. The investigation included a minimum of 12 ground searches and two underwater searches.”

Heather Lynn Peters covers police and fire, and writes a statewide food column, The Spunky Kitchen, for MLive/Muskegon Chronicle. Email her at hpeters@mlive.com and follow her on Twitter @HLPNEWS.

back door at exxon.jpg

Jessica Heeringa Updates

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — The boyfriend of missing Norton Shores woman Jessica Heeringa has admitted to three felony drug charges.

Dakotah Quail-Dyer pleaded guilty Friday to one count of possession of a controlled substance and two counts of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, all as a second-time habitual offender, according to Muskegon County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Tim Maat.

Quail-Dyer was arrested on the charges in June. Authorities say he sold marijuana to an undercover officer on March 5, May 5 and May 29.

Jessica Heeringa, the mother of Quail-Dyer’s 4-year-old son, was abducted in April 2013 from the Norton Shores gas station where she worked.

Quail-Dyer has been fighting to keep custody of his son Zevyn. In court records, he said he has kept his son from Heeringa’s family, in part, because they have falsely accused him of abuse and neglect and threatened to take the boy away.

The status of that case was not immediately available Tuesday evening.

Quail-Dyer is scheduled to be sentenced for the drug crimes in September.

via Heeringa’s boyfriend pleads to drug charges | WOODTV.com.

Similar story to Morgan Harrington abduction in some regards.

11 Responses

  1. Its nice to get her case on your site but this looks like it is just OLD information thrown together in order to do so … lots of things wrong but most importantly the reward is up to $26,000 and the family has set up an ANONYMOUS Tipline that is run by them, it is completely confidential any information please call 231-222-0278 or you can E mail Tips4Jessica@gmail.com

    • Hey Teresa, I will try to get the information updated… I actually didn’t plan on that getting posted yet, at the time I was making a draft post and optimistically scheduled it to go live thinking that I would have time to get back to it before hand and clean it all up.

      By the way, this is a somewhat personal case for me since this is from my hometown of Muskegon. I do want to get all the information on here updated and correct. I will get that updated tonight and I apologize for being so busy that it took so long to comment back. Hope you still check back on this; let me know any information that I missed or that is inaccurate..

  2. A man who could get away with this would have to be cunning. maybe somebody who took an intrest and not from the area at all. a phycopath isn’t always in bloody clothing caring a knife. most are smart, clever, calculating individuals. To me this was a opportunity

    • I don’t know if I responded to your comment before and it didn’t post, or if I’m just not seeing it right now. Either way, you could very well be right on that. I seem to think the opposite though; I think it was someone she knew, possibly someone jealous (I read a MLive article about how one of the first people the police saw by the scene was a man that wasn’t that Dakota character, but claimed to be her boyfriend. If there’s 2, could there be 3? Don’t know either way, but its plausible that one of those 2 could have been jealous..

      The fact that the video shows them going down Grand Haven Road from the Homestead bar video; when getting back on the highway would have been the easiest and smartest route out of the area.. seems to point to someone who knows the area, and wasn’t looking to get out of town etc.

      But looking at both sides of it; some factors that point to the direction of the person from being out of town would be the fact that the vehicle wasn’t positively identified as far as we know. In other words, to put it a different way.. with all the attention that the case got, and the fact that there are two or three video captures of the getaway vehicle; the fact that it was never identified would be hard to believe if it was a person from the area.. You’d think people would call and say so and so has that kind of vehicle and might have been in that area on that day… Or the police checking up on all registered make and models of that vehicle in the area, and eliminate that..

      But really, and this is just my opinion, but I think the police probably know who it is; but can’t do anything if there’s not enough evidence. Maybe they are saying person x and person y aren’t suspects, maybe to get them to feel more comfortable talking to them.. Or maybe its someone from out of town and if that’s the case, they really could have nothing to go on.

      I always thought that they would be able to find out who it was just by checking cell phone records in the area and see if a cell phone was pinging towers at the same time as the SUV was passing by those spots on Grand Haven Road.. But its been long enough now, so I guess we can assume either the person didn’t have a cell phone with him..
      Hopefully there’s a new lead or break in the case in the future, that’s gotta be hell for the family and especially her son.

      • Thanks for the informative email. I wish you would go out there and ask some tough questions to shake things up. One of the locals did it and is lieing. Separate them all at once, and ask them tough questions when they can’t hear what the others are saying. Tell them after the separation that someone gave the truth and the investigators want their side of the story. Someone will break. This police chief must be connected to who did this because he keeps trying to bury it and get it off of everyone’s minds.

        • Hey Jeff, if I was able to I would. Its strange that there isn’t more information released. The fact that there is a video out there, and that they haven’t been able to match that vehicle to any suspects (or if they have, they aren’t releasing that info and putting pressure on them); my best guess is that they are worried of being sued by the suspect(s). I really don’t know. If I was running the investigation; I would see if anybody in her life had that type of vehicle, and ratchet up the pressure, get them to make as many statements as possible, find any inconsistency, and pounce once they f**k up. This while searching for all sex offenders with that type vehicle in the ENTIRE STATE; then pulling up and talking to anyone with that type of vehicle registered within a 10 mile radius.

          One thing that is worth noting, that vehicle in the video from the bar; it looks like its in fairly good condition (I mean its not some old beat up vehicle from the 1980s, etc.) Each time I saw that video clip, I was thinking to myself that this wasn’t someone barely getting by, either his parents are a regular income middle-class family or he is. Its possible he borrowed a car, but I don’t think someone would let someone borrow a car and then find out a day or two later that a vehicle matching their vehicle was used in a kidnapping; I would think any innocent person would want to clear their name by saying they loaned out the car and that if it was involved in a kidnapping it must have been so-and-so who borrowed the vehicle.

          Anyway, sorry for the long rant again and sorry for getting back to you months late. I run 6 websites and its been hard for me to keep up with them all. I’ll try to keep up better in the future.

  3. It seems to me that NS police chief Shaw, is being really easy on the cast of characters that are still person’s of interest. Did anyone follow up the claim by the owner of buying a bike for her son? Was he expecting something in return? I thought I heard that the owner liked hiring “pretty girls” to bring customers in, and that Jessica looked a lot like his ex-wife, that either died or divorced him. And he didn’t find it important to come in when the police called him about doing that a couple of times? Was he hiding her at the time? That owner has anger issues too, as seen by how he treated the news crews in his parking lot also. I’d lean really heavy on him and do an extensive investigation of him.

    • Well, I don’t want to bad mouth the investigation or the police chief, but I think they are doing this to keep communication lines open with suspects.. If you are going to catch someone in a lie, they have to be talking to you, right?
      Plus, usually there’s a lot that the public doesn’t know until after there’s enough evidence. A lot of times they know more than they can let known, because the problem that happens when they do release information, is that if they do, they can no longer use it as a connection to the crime if a suspect accidently brings up information that only the perpetrator would know.
      I’m thinking they probably know or at least have a very good idea who it is, but not enough evidence to do anything yet.

      A couple points on your points..
      “Did anyone follow up the claim by the owner of buying a bike for her son? Was he expecting something in return?”
      I don’t know about that one and don’t remember hearing about that either. Maybe its true he was going to get a bike for him.. but if that is true, there’s no way anyone but him would know if he was expecting something in return. So it would just be specculation unless he said something to someone.
      And I don’t know about the owner being involved with hiring pretty girls, but it was a horrible mistake on his part for not having a camera there. In this day and age, with cell phones and computers, you got no excuse for not having a video camera looking after your employees safety; and not just that, you could prevent your store from getting robbed if you had cameras in it..

      But my gut feeling tells me it was one of her boyfriends; just the fact that there was two, was a red flag, and the fact that I read one or both of them had access to a vehicle that match the getaway vehicle really sealed it in my mind.. Think police know who it is, but just don’t have enough to charge him yet.

  4. in answer to you asking about the boss buying Jess’s son a bike … it was found out that he did not guy him one but he gave his own son’s old bike to Jessica.

    • Thanks Teresa,
      And sorry for the very late reply. I’ve been running multiple blogs as well as work orders that have really taken away a lot of my time; as well as time for friends and family… so I have been really struggling with finding time. But I’m going to try to do better on updating things and cleaning up this site hopefully within a week or two.

      • Wow dude you duped and are a pathetic loser. It’s also fraud to assume another person’s life. Hope you rot in jail.

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