Mystery as missing woman, 21, found buried inside a barn after leaving home with uncle and his girlfriend | The Sun

Mystery as missing woman, 21, found buried inside a barn after leaving home with uncle and his girlfriend | The Sun

06/24/2022

THE body of a missing woman found buried in a barn may have been dumped there by her uncle and his girlfriend, investigators believe.

Jessi Wilfong, 21, had been at the home Lawrence Schanda and his 59-year-old girlfriend Teresa Baumgartner in Millersville, Missouri, about 100 miles from St Louis.


Surveillance footage shows she was last seen alive arriving there just after 1am on May 19 and was reported missing by her mother on May 25.

Cape Girardeau County Sheriff’s Office said it then launched an investigation which led them to a barn by a home in Millersville.

Investigators noticed a patch of dirt on the ground that looked recently disturbed , then began digging and found Jessi’s remains in a hole.

Two days later, on June 20, an autopsy confirmed that Jessi was a homicide victim, the Sheriff’s office said.

Investigators believe Baumgartner and Schanda disposed of Wilfong’s body, according to court documents obtained by KFVS.

Wilfong was at a home in Fredericktown when she was picked up by her uncle and his girlfriend, they say.

When Baumgartner was interviewed she told investigators the three had spent that night “sitting around a bonfire at her residence drinking and talking”.

Jessi asked to be taken back to Fredericktown but they refused and Baumgartner said she must must have left her home after she went to sleep.

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According to a probable-cause statement written by sheriff’s detective Jaime Holloway on June 8, officers interviewed Schanda about Jessi’s disappearance, the Southeast Missourian reports.

He told officers the two had got into a verbal altercation in the early morning hours of May 19.

Jessi was providing law enforcement with information implicating him in illegal drug activity, Schanda said.

Investigators then searched his house and found parts of carpet had been removed from the living room and hallway, the statement says.

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So far murder charges have been announced and investigators have not said how Wilfong may have died or who killed her.

“The investigation remains ongoing, and additional charges are anticipated against one or more individuals,” said the Sherriff’s office.

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