The York Daily Record has published more details on Linda Stoltzfoos’ disappearance. Here are some excerpts.
About the day she disappeared:
Lloyd Stoltzfoos told the officer that his daughter was supposed to go to youth group after church the previous day but never made it.
She did not come home to change her clothes in between church and youth group as expected, either. The family checked her room but did not find her formal church clothing, investigators said.
Her father said he believed she never made it home after church, court papers state.
Lloyd Stoltzfoos told police that his daughter typically walked along Beechdale and Stumptown roads to get to church. She didn’t cut across fields.
Investigators noted that it would have been difficult for her to take a shortcut with Mill Creek running through the area.
Lillian Ebersole told investigators she spoke with Linda after church on Father’s Day before the young woman headed for home.
Linda stayed after church and helped with the dishes, Ebersole told investigators. The two talked in front of a barn before she departed, and Linda said she was going to walk home and change her clothes before heading to youth group.
Linda was carrying her shoes and walking barefoot the last time Ebersole saw her.
Images: WPXI-TV News Pittsburgh
Ebersole described Linda as “a very content person who was happy with her life style,” the affidavit states. She never had a phone or a boyfriend.
Investigators also spoke with three of Stoltzfoos’ good friends. They reported being with her on the Friday evening before she disappeared. She was fine and acted normally.
Linda Stoltzfoos told her friends she would see them at youth group at a farm in Leola on Sunday, but she never showed up. The friends figured she was sick, police said.
The friends told investigators they did not believe she would ever go away without telling anyone.
Investigators also learned that Linda Stoltzfoos is employed and helps to tutor students with learning disabilities in the Amish community.
“During interviews with family and friends, it was determined that Linda loved her family and would have no reason to leave unexpectedly,” the affidavit states.
On the surveillance video from Beechdale Road:
Police obtained video surveillance from the 500 block of Beechdale Road, and the FBI Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory conducted a forensic examination of it.
Investigators could see a red sedan traveling along Beechdale Road around 12:42 p.m. The driver’s side window was down and a white object could be seen on the front seat passenger side.
Authorities identified the vehicle as a red Kia Rio with a spoiler and stickers on the trunk. A records check showed that Justo Smoker, 34, of Paradise, owned a vehicle fitting that description, and he worked at a business in Gap.
Investigators drove to the business, saw the red Kia Rio in the parking lot and found that it matched the vehicle in the video. During their surveillance, police noted it left the business around 5:25 p.m. on July 8, and they later found it parked behind Smoker’s apartment along the Lincoln Highway.
Police spoke with Smoker the following day. He told investigators that he didn’t know Linda Stoltzfoos and couldn’t provide any information about her disappearance, the affidavit states.
Investigators continued to work on the case, developed a timeline and determined that Linda Stoltzfoos disappeared within a 10- to 15-minute window on Father’s Day.
While watching a slow review of the video, investigators observed a vehicle pull off along the west side of Beechdale Road around 12:36 p.m. About four minutes later, a lone individual wearing white can be seen walking along the road.
An unknown person appeared from the area where the car pulled off, crossed the road and approached the lone individual. The two walked across the street to where the car pulled off. The car pulled out from the side of the road a short time later.
Find the YDR article in full here.
Justo Smoker was arrested and charged with Linda’s kidnapping on Friday. Linda remains missing. Anyone with information is requested to contact police at 717-291-4676.
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