June 14, 2000. Jonesboro, Arkansas. 20-year old Amanda Tusing leaves her fiancee’s apartment to drive home to her parents’ house, but never arrives. Her abandoned car is soon discovered by the side of the highway, but there is no sign of Amanda. Days later, her body is found in a waterlogged ditch over 12 miles away, but there are no signs of sexual assault and the exact cause of death cannot be determined. The identity of Amanda’s killer, as well as the motive for the crime, remain unknown.
July 25, 1989. Bella Vista, Arkansas. After driving away from a grocery store, 17-year old Dana Stidham fails to return to her parents’ house and her abandoned vehicle is found next to the highway the following morning. Less than two months later, Dana’s skeletal remains are discovered in a shallow grave in a remote wooded area. The investigation focuses on a high school classmate of Dana’s who was infatuated with her and displayed suspicious behaviour after her death, but there is not enough evidence to implicate him.
On this week’s episode of “The Trail Went Cold”, we examine two unsolved murders involving young women from Arkansas whose vehicles were found abandoned by the side of the highway. Could these crimes possibly be connected? Special thanks to listener Jamie Winn for providing the opening narration for this episode.
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The Trail Went Cold is produced and edited by Magill Foote.
All music is composed by Vince Nitro.