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Missing

Susan Robin Bender










Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021


Susan, approximately 1986; Age when reported missing: 45 (approximately 2015); Wesley Shermantine; Loren Herzog




Date reported missing : 04/25/1986

Missing location (approx) :
Modesto, California
Missing classification : Non-Family Abduction
Gender : Female
Ethnicity :
Biracial, Hispanic, Native American, White


DOB : 11/27/1970 (50)
Age at the time of disappearance: 15 years old
Height / Weight : 5'5, 130 pounds
Description, clothing, jewerly and more : A light blue skirt with multi-colored dots, a light-colored blouse, a white vest and a gold bEthnicity : let.
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos : Multiracial female. Black hair, brown eyes. Susan has freckles. Her ears are pierced. She is of Caucasian, Hispanic and Native American descent.





Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Susan left her family's home in Modesto, California on April 25, 1986 to stay with friends in Carmel, California. She was last seen at the former Greyhound bus depot on 10th Street and G Street in Modesto, making a phone call. Susan did not board a bus; instead, she was seen entering an unidentified full-sized olive-green 1977 Ford van outside of the station during the day. Susan has never been seen again.
Susan's diary, address book and some items of her clothing were located at a suspect's home after she vanished. The person was questioned by investigators, but released due to a lack of evidence.
Wesley Howard Shermantine Jr. and Loren Joseph Herzog, the so-called "Speed Freak Killers," are possible suspects in Susan's case. They were arrested in 2000 and ultimately convicted of murdering several females in the 1980s and 1990s; authorities believe they had as many as fifteen victims. Photographs of both men are posted with this case summary.
Shermantine is on death row. Herzog's sentence was reduced from 78 years to 14 years after the court ruled his confession had been coerced. He was paroled in 2010 and then took his own life in January 2012, after he found out his former partner had begun cooperating with authorities and had offered to reveal the location of victims' bodies in exchange for a payment of $33,000.
Shermantine led investigators to the skeletal remains of Chevelle Wheeler and Cyndi Vanderheiden, who'd been Date reported missing : 1985 and 1998 respectively. He also pointed out an abandoned well in Linden, California that contained some 300 human bones and personal items. Shermantine stated the well contained up to twenty victims. He blames Herzog for all the murders and says he only helped with disposing the bodies.
Shermantine and Herzog are being investigated in other missing persons' cases, including Phillip Martin, Michaela Garecht, Sylvia Standly, Gayle Marks and Ruth Leamon. The skeletal remains of victims Kimberly Billy, a 19-year-old who disappeared in 1984, and Joann Hobson, a 16-year-old who disappeared in 1985, were identified, but Susan's body was not found in the well.
Foul play is suspected in Susan's case; it remains unsolved.


Other information and links : ncy

Modesto Police Department
209-572-9551



September 2021 updates and sources

Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, NCIC. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, NCIC. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.
Child Protection Education of America
California Attorney General's Office
The Modesto Bee











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