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Browse us for breaking news, missing person alerts, unsolved crimes and cold cases. Plus explore interviews, photos, case updates and brand new evidence in our ongoing 'Smiley Face Murder' investigation.
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Start here. New guests, are you investigating a loved one's suspicious disappearance and drowning? Begin with a look at the forensics of a true drowning and the complete Smiley Face Serial Killer case background. Then read in-depth interviews with families of other 'Smiley' victims, by author Eponymous Rox.

ABOUT KILLING KILLERS' BLOGGER: Eponymous Rox covers cops, curs and killers and has been featured in Crime Magazine and on NBC. The author is also a regular paid-contributor to CrimeMagazine.com, the Gather News agency and Yahoo's Associated Content. JUMP IN: The majority of cases presented on this site are unsolved so your opinion counts -- you don't need permission to start or join discussions, vote in crime polls or submit tips on Killing Killers, and can even do so anonymously if you prefer.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Missing Ohio Man Joey Labute Found Drowned in Scioto River

A coroner has confirmed that Joey Labute (below) -- missing from Columbus Ohio since early March -- was the victim found drowned in the Scioto River on Tuesday.

Evidently, some degloving of the 26-year-old's hands and feet, and other stages of decomposition, hampered immediate attempts to identify LaBute's remains this week through fingerprinting.

Missing Ohio man Joey Labute found drowned in the Scioto RiverDental charts and a forensic dentist had to be consulted instead, although detectives previously indicated that, otherwise, the body they retrieved a few feet offshore this week was "in pretty good condition."

The circumstances of how Joseph 'Joey' Labute suddenly vanished from a downtown Columbus restaurant where he was socializing with family and friends on March 4th still remains a mystery, however.

Police have again said that foul play hasn't been ruled out, and, because of the nature of Labute's death and where his fully-clad corpse was discovered, his missing persons case and alleged drowning are both now being treated as "suspicious."

Joey LaBute worked for Morgan Stanley and was a 2011 graduate of Ohio State University. It's not clear yet if he actually died in the water or was placed there already dead.

The Baffling Disappearance of Mike Vanzandt

The disappearance of 36yo Mike Vanzandt in Hermosa Beach California earlier this month continues to baffle investigators and his loved ones.

The veteran airman and father-of-three momentarily strayed from family and friends on the night of March 5, 2016, as the group was waiting in line at a popular waterfront restaurant to watch an Ultimate Fighting Championship match.

http://www.killingkillers.blogspot.comVery soon after that, Vanzandt's phone went dead and, weeks later, there are still no answers as to what happened to him.

Initial reports that he was filmed by surveillance cameras walking away with strangers proved false, according to police who claimed a closer inspection of the "grainy" footage showed the subject in it was a different man.

"The quality of the footage was very low ... the man in the video isn't him," Detective Josh Droz of the Hermosa Police announced during week-two of the unsuccessful Vanzandt hunt.

The 36-year-old's mysterious disappearance has even recently been featured on Dateline, but the publicity hasn't helped one iota in solving his missing persons case -- he's "simply fallen off the map" and his phone and bank accounts remain inactive.

Michael Vanzandt is a Caucasian adult male about 6-feet tall and 190 pounds with blond hair and blue eyes. The former security forces airman, expert swimmer, and scuba diver is employed at the Edwards Air Force Base and a devoted family man.

Although "there is no evidence that foul play is involved" in his unexplained disappearance -- nor PTSD -- the Hermosa Beach Police Department is urging anyone with information to contact them at (310) 318-0360.

Tips may also be submitted directly to Detective Droz at (310) 318-0334, or by emailing him at jdroz[at]hermosapolice[dot]org.

For those who would like to financially aid the family of Mike Vanzandt so they can continue to travel to California and search for their missing relative, a GoFundMe campaign has been launched as well.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Young Man Found Drowned in Ohio River Yesterday (ID Pending)

An autopsy is due today on the body of a young man found drowned in the Scioto River of Columbus Ohio on Tuesday.


The Columbus Division Police Dive Team extricated the corpse from floating debris yesterday afternoon in the vicinity of the Scioto Audubon Metro Park near Interstate-71 and Greenlawn Ave.

It was then delivered to the Franklin County Coroner's Office for medical examination.

At present the victim's identity is still unknown, but homicide detectives said they're poring over several outstanding missing persons reports for a possible connection.

A department spokesman said the unidentified young male was found fully-clothed and that his body was in "pretty good condition," suggesting that it hadn't been in the river for very long.

“We have a male in his twenties and we don’t know why he died,” he also stated. The death is therefore being treated as "suspicious" pending further investigation.

Joey LaBute mysteriously went missing from a downtown Columbus restaurant earlier this month.

The 26-year-old has not been seen or heard from ever since that night.

U.S. Student Colin Madsen, 25, Missing in Siberia

Russian police are looking for U.S. grad student Colin Madsen, 25 of Missouri (below), who went missing in Siberia on March 27th.

Madsen, who's doing his postgraduate work at Irkutsk State Linguistic University, was staying "with friends" at a remote guesthouse in Arshan when he allegedly went outdoors in subzero temperatures and vanished without a trace.

25yo Missourian Colin Madsen is #missing in SiberiaAuthorities there believe he left the building early Sunday morning between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. without an overcoat, but don't know what preceded this decision.

A colleague of the missing college student posted on Facebook this week that ‘at the moment no one can clearly explain what happened" that morning.

He also said the U.S. embassy in Moscow has been notified of Madsen's missing persons status in the mountainous tourist region of Buryatia and "are taking measures" to help locate him.

Colin Madsen is a slim Caucasian male about 5-foot-6, with blue eyes and brown hair. Anyone with information concerning his disappearance and current whereabouts should alert the Buryatian police or embassy officials without delay.

Helicopters are being deployed in today's "full scale" search for the missing young man, and his mother is said to have embarked to Russia from Jefferson City Missouri to join in the quest to find her son 'safe.'

Monday, March 28, 2016

BREAKING - Body Found in UK Stream Sparks Murder Arrest and Probe

BREAKING NEWS: UK police have arrested a suspect after a  body was found in a woodland stream today, and a homicide investigation into the unnamed man's death was launched.

http://www.killingkillers.blogspot.comThe Press Association reporting for the Guardian News said a 21-year-old male is currently in police custody on suspicion of murder, but neither his identity nor that of his alleged victim's has been released yet.

Early Monday, someone walking near the Goodwyns estate in Dorking Surrey spotted the apparent drowned corpse of an unknown male and contacted the police.

The dead man was retrieved from the water and is now awaiting autopsy and formal identification at the county Medical Examiner's Office.

In the meantime, his suspected killer is being questioned by detectives and additional charges may be pending, according to a spokesman for the Surrey UK police.

He told press gathered at the scene that “the team and I are focused on a number of inquiries to try and establish the circumstances surrounding this incident and will be carrying out various searches in the area as well as making house-to-house inquiries.”

Arrests and murder investigations are exceptionally uncommon in the Case of the Drowning Men, particularly in the U.S. where, regardless of the circumstances surrounding a missing young man's drowning, such cases are typically ruled "accidents."

This breaking news story is developing -- please check the comments section for any additional updates, and feel free to add your own there or any other observations.


Sunday, March 27, 2016

Body of Missing Man Matt Stoner Found on Riverbank

Matt Stoner below went missing from a Pennsylvania pub in early February -- his body was found this week on the banks of the Susquehanna River.

Stoner, 33, was celebrating Mardi Gras with his girlfriend and a few friends in downtown Williamsport PA when he went outside for some fresh air and bouncers refused to let him back in again.

Missing 33yo Matt Stoner found drowned in Susquehanna River
He reportedly then decided to walk back to his home some ten minutes from the bar, but went missing instead ... until Thursday morning when a fisherman spotted the body of an adult male washed up on the riverbank.

The gruesome discovery doesn't come as a surprise to police though -- they had instantly theorized that  Matt Stoner vanished without a trace on February 7th because "grainy" surveillance video showed him "falling off" the Market Street Bridge that night.

Divers and cadaver dogs were employed to search beneath the overpass and at least one K9 indicated there might be human remains in the water, but none were found during any of those recovery operations.

An autopsy and investigation is currently underway to determine precisely how Stoner died. In the meantime, anyone with information about his disappearance and apparent drowning should contact the Williamsport Bureau of Police at (570) 433-3166.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Missing Airman Keifer Huhman Found Drowned

Police have confirmed that the body of missing airman Keifer Huhman has washed ashore in Delaware.

For weeks after the 21-year-old vanished and his abandoned truck impounded, loved ones and law enforcement have been searching area waterways for his remains.

On Thursday a fisherman discovered a young male's corpse cast onto a rocky bank of the Chesapeake and Delaware canal.

It was retrieved and later positively identified at the Delaware Division of Forensic Science as Keifer Huhman.

The Senior Airman was stationed at Dover Air Force Base and reported missing by his family in February when he failed to return there for duty and they learned authorities had towed his disabled vehicle from a bridge.

No one yet knows the circumstances of Huhman's apparent drowning in the C&D canal. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause and manner of his death.

Air Force officials had already declared their missing airman dead earlier in March 2016 -- Huhman is one of several young men to disappear and purportedly drown this winter.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Smiley Face Murders (1997 - 2016)

a glance at 'Victim Zero' Patrick McNeill
Missing in NYC February 1997 - Found Drowned April 1997

NEW YORK, NY - April 17, 1997: “The Fordham University student whose body was found floating near a Brooklyn pier last week died from drowning, New York City's chief Medical Examiner ruled yesterday. He said that the level of alcohol in the body of Patrick McNeill Jr. was ‘more than a little and less than a lot.’ What remains unclear then is how Mr. McNeill, an athletic 21-year-old, wound up in the river and drowned. The manner of death was listed as undetermined in the autopsy report...”

Smiley Face Murders 'Victim Zero' Patrick McNeill 
"Stalked, abducted, held for an extended period of time, murdered and disposed."

Smiley Face Murders: "We have a body that was already dead before it was placed in the water." 
The body of the first Smiley Face Murders victim, 21yo Patrick McNeill, "was 
already dead before it was placed in the water. I would call it a homicide, yes."

"There is a pattern ... around his neck, as if to suggest some kind of binding."

"We have a young man found with a blood alcohol level of 0.16 ... a relatively low level ...
no way in the world that this man then accidentally is going to fall into a body of water."


Monday, March 21, 2016

Convicted Preppie Rapist Owen Labrie Busted (again)

St. Paul grad and convicted rapist Owen Labrie (below) has been re-booked and finally jailed, after telling a female reporter he'd repeatedly violated home-detention at his family's Vermont estate.

Labrie, now 20, stood trial in New Hampshire in 2015 on several charges of luring and raping an under-aged female student at his elite prep school during its time "honored" tradition of senior male students targeting freshman girls for exploitation.

Fellow participants of St. Paul's infamous 'Senior Salute' testified that Labrie was enthusiastically attempting to make himself the *winner* of 2014's contest, even bragging about the premeditated sexual assault he was later arrested for and convicted.


In an effort to appear younger than his child victim, Defendant Labrie showed up in court as a Harry Potter lookalike. But the silly disguise didn't work -- he was found guilty on multiple counts of statutory rape and one felony count of using a computer to entice a minor for the purposes of having unlawful relations with her.

Those convictions would have additionally required Owen Labrie to register as a sex offender for life, but at the time of his rearrest in March 2016 he was in the process of appealing and, supposedly, abiding by the strict terms of his bailed release.

But instead, Labrie informed a newswoman on a train headed for Boston in late February, he was "slowly reentering society" again and "dating" someone two states away.

Prosecutors in New Hampshire caught wind of his confession and, while investigating it, uncovered evidence that the convicted rapist had in fact already violated the conditions of home-arrest about a dozen times before then.

On the grounds that he'd clearly proven “unlikely to abide by any condition or combination of conditions of release,” they then successfully had Labrie's bond status revoked by a judge this month and Labrie was sent to jail for the original one-year sentence he was hoping soon to overturn.

Search for David Breunig Aided by Cadaver Dogs

Weeks after Maine maritime student David Breunig (shown in uniform below) disappeared, the hunt for him has narrowed, thanks to a cadaver dog named Quincy.

Yesterday's search for the missing 21-year-old saw body-recovery teams once more probing the Penobscot River, and by sunset they reported locating an "object of interest" in Devereaux Cove south of Sandy Point state park.

That area will be the main focus of today's efforts, a spokesman confirmed last night.

Is missing maritime student David Breunig in the river?David Breunig vanished from Orono Maine late in February, after leaving a party on foot around midnight.

It is now rumored that he "fell into the river" from a train trestle and drowned, although no evidence has surfaced to support the contention.

The treacherous overpass is near where the Stillwater and Penobscot rivers meet and legally barred to pedestrian traffic.

However, local law enforcement agencies have already conceded it's an extremely uncommon occurrence for anyone to actually die crossing the elevated tracks.

Whether athletic David 'DJ' Breunig was one of the few victims who did plummet to his death from the structure remains under investigation.

Anyone with info about his yet-unsolved missing persons case should contact the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office at (207) 667-7575, or the Orono Police Department at (207) 945-4636.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

ALERT for Joey LaBute, 26 and still missing in Ohio

Shown in the poster below, 26yo Joey LaBute mysteriously vanished from a Columbus Ohio restaurant on March 4, 2016.

"The assumption was he'd be right back," said a companion of Joseph 'Joe' LaBute Jr. that evening, after he rose from their table in the Union Cafe on High Street and "went to get a drink at the bar."

But LaBute was never seen or heard from again, and almost two weeks later police and family are no closer to solving his baffling missing persons case.

MISSING PERSON ALERT: Joey LaBute, 26 of Ohio

All that's known today is that there's been no activity whatsoever on LaBute's cellphone or personal accounts, and -- after his abandoned car was located -- his parents are now "frantic" to find him, hopefully alive and safe.

"We love you and we’re trying to get you back,” they said in a published appeal issued to their still-missing son this week.

Joey LaBute of Gahanna Ohio is an athletic Caucasian male standing about 6-feet tall, with brown hair and brown eyes.

Anyone who knows what happened to him earlier this month, or his present whereabouts, is urged to alert a 911 dispatcher or to contact detectives of the Columbus Division of Police at 614-645-4545.

The Gahanna Police Department is also involved in this investigation. Tips can be submitted to the GPD at 614-342-4240.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Missing 22yo Zachary Marr Found Drowned in Charles River

Boston officials are confirming that 22yo Zach Marr -- missing since mid February -- has been found drowned tonight in the Charles River.

A BPD spokesman told reporters this evening that passersby spied a body in the water near where divers had repeatedly searched for Zachary Marr when he vanished from a popular tavern last month.

Investigators have been convinced throughout the ensuing weeks that Zach Marr "fell into the river" after bouncers denied him reentry to the bar where the out-of-towner had been celebrating his birthday with  cousins.

Following his missing persons report, both representatives for the Bell In Hand and Boston Police Department claimed to have viewed surveillance video showing Marr wandering away at "closing time," although he had no coat and just texted his relatives still inside the premises.

The waterfront location searchers focused on once video allegedly emerged last month showing the missing youth "falling into the water" is almost a mile from the Bell In Hand, and, coincidentally, exactly where his corpse was found today.

None of that footage was ever released to the public, but the circumstances of Boston's latest disappeared and drowned young man is not considered suspicious. Read Killing Killers' original alert for Zach Marr here.


Monday, March 14, 2016

Robert Kovack, Missing 18 Years, Found Dead Under New River Gorge Bridge

The body of 24-year-old Robert Kovack (below) who's been missing for almost two decades was finally unearthed under the New River Gorge Bridge in West Virginia.

The Virginia Tech grad-student disappeared September 18, 1998, allegedly en route from his campus to a Maryland University football game.

Despite an intensive search for him, only Kovack's abandoned vehicle was ever recovered.

Last Thursday, though, a construction crew beginning initial repairs of the New River Gorge span discovered skeletal remains and other personal effects -- including a college ID -- hidden in an area of dense foliage near one of its pilings.

Robert Kovack, missing 18 years, found dead under New River Gorge Bridge in WVABC News is reporting that the bones were transported to the Smithsonian Institute for positive identification and possible autopsy, but a member of the Kovack family already expressed his belief that they're those of his long lost relative.

“We may never know what happened,” the decedent's older brother also acknowledged to the Associated Press, but "I find it highly unlikely he just gave up and jumped.”

No one does know for certain yet if Kovack leaped, fell or was thrown to his death, but the bridge that appears to have claimed his life has a perilous 875-foot drop from its highest point, making it the third tallest in America and a worldwide attraction.

In fact, West Virginia officials revealed this week that dozens of people have fatally plummeted from the New River Gorge Bridge during the 18 years that Robert Kovack had been gone without a trace.

Some met an end there intentionally, they said, either while engaged in recreational 'BASE' jumping or by committing suicide, and other victims fell by accident.

Search and rescue teams in 1998 had discovered Kovack's car parked, locked and out of gas in close proximity to the infamous structure, but never came across any other proof that the missing college student had himself died.

The investigation into the young man's missing persons case was also obstructed somewhat when his roommates at Virginia Tech hastily packed up all his belongings before police had a chance to examine these items for evidence of a crime...

Friday, March 11, 2016

Missing Man Matt Labounty Washes Ashore in Albany NY

The body of 21-year-old Matt Labounty, missing since Christmas, washed ashore in Albany New York this week.

Yesterday a coroner confirmed through autopsy that the remains of a Caucasian male found partially submerged in a marshy area of the Hudson River on Wednesday were those of the missing young man.

The victim's cause and manner of death hasn't been announced pending the results of a toxicology test, but police have already stated that they "don't suspect foul play."


Troy resident Matthew Labounty was last sighted alive in the predawn hours of December 25, 2015 walking toward the Menands Bridge. He was never seen or heard from again.

Divers began searching that part of the Hudson within days of Labounty's missing persons report, although Troy city police said at the time they had "no evidence he was in the water."

Two days ago, however, someone walking alongside the river in the Corning Nature Preserve spotted a fully clad corpse in the mud near a boat launch.

The site was cordoned off while a team of firefighters recovered the body.

Matt Labounty is one of many young men who vanished without a trace this winter and -- days or weeks later -- were found drowned.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Missing Airman Keifer Huhman Presumed Drowned

Air Force officials say missing 21-year-old airman Keifer Huhman (below) drowned in the Dover Delaware canal system last month, although his body has yet to be found.

Huhman has been gone without a trace since February 7th, when he reportedly phoned friends to cancel previous plans to attend their Super Bowl party.

His truck was towed from the northbound side of the Route-1 bridge spanning the C&D Canal several days later, according to police reports.

missing airman Kiefer Huhman presumed drownedInvestigators also discovered overturned furniture in Huhman's apartment, but haven't said if the disarray found there is connected to his disappearance.

He was expecting to transfer soon to the Okinawa air base in Japan where his father, Chief Master Sergeant Kenneth Huhman, was  stationed.

It was an appointment Keifer Huhman was evidently looking forward to, but this week three officers of the Dover Air Force Base notified the missing young man's mother in person that her son is now "considered deceased."

They further promised "in writing" to assist the coroner in promptly issuing a death certificate stating he died when he "fell off the bridge" so the family can finally obtain "closure," she told reporters yesterday.

"We are continuing to ask everyone located within the C&D canal area to keep a lookout in and around the water," a relative also posted on Facebook. "Due to the waterway’s temperatures and extremely dangerous conditions, Keifer may not be found until the water warms up."

However, a spokesman for the Dover Police Department has emphasized that their own probe into Keifer Huhman's unsolved disappearance remains open and active.

"It's still being investigated as a missing persons case at this time," he said.

Anyone who knows what happened to Senior Airman Huhman over a month ago, or knowledge of his current whereabouts, is urged to contact the DPD at (302) 736-7130.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

College Athlete Douglas Usseglio Found Drowned in NH

Massachusetts college athlete Douglas Usseglio (below) has been found drowned with a head injury in New Hampshire after attending a local gathering. But police "don't suspect foul play."


The 22-year-old student from Franklin Pierce University was studying accounting and finance and played for the school's ice hockey team, the Ravens.

He was last seen at a house party in Rindge, NH on Saturday night, and found dead the next day in a stream some distance away.

Although the circumstances of how Douglas Usseglio ended up in the water are yet unknown and an autopsy is still pending, investigators said his head wound was "consistent" with an "accidental fall."

They made no mention of the youth's arrest last September in Waltham Massachusetts on multiple counts of drug trafficking, or whether these facts might have a bearing on his death inquiry now.

Usseglio and his 21-year-old associate Nicholas Haczynski were both set up and snagged in 2015 by the Southern Middlesex County Drug Task Force.

Undercover cops reportedly bought significant quantities of cocaine from the pair at least twice before finally arresting them on charges related to the third sale of over an ounce.

Task Force agents also seized an undisclosed amount of drug money from Usseglio during his apprehension and arraignment last fall.

In addition to conspiracy to violate drug laws, he also faced two counts of distributing cocaine, one count of possession with intent to sell, and one count of trafficking cocaine.

It's not clear how or if that matter had been settled at the time of Doug Usseglio's death, but his case and alleged drowning last weekend appears almost identical with that of Andrew Sadek two years prior.

Sadek, 20 and a student at the North Dakota State College of Science, had also gotten himself busted by a Task Force for dealing illegal substances while at university.

He was arrested in the winter of 2013, but those charges were discreetly dropped in exchange for his *cooperation* in apprehending other similarly-enterprising college students.

Drug informant Sadek went missing in May of 2014 while still on *assignment* with the Southeast Multi-County Agency Drug Task Force. About a month later his body was retrieved from the Red River with a bullet wound to the head.

Police said he somehow shot and drowned himself, and a coroner then closed the book on Sadek's untimely death, ruling it a suicide...

Monday, March 7, 2016

Senator Tindell's Cousin BJ Brown Missing from Mississippi

Shown below, BJ Brown, 34 and the cousin of Mississippi state senator Sean Tindell, went missing from a campground concert over the weekend.


“My cousin Brody 'BJ' Brown has been missing since last night," Senator Tindell posted on his Facebook page yesterday. "He was last seen about 9:30 at Muddy Joe’s in Hancock County. This picture was taken just beforehand. If you have seen, heard, or know anything please report it to authorities.”

Brown, a career offshore-man, was camping this weekend with his family at an RV park north of Kiln. 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1477668411According to his missing persons report, he vanished en route to the restrooms while attending an outdoor concert there.

Both Sean Tindell and his missing cousin's wife say the 34-year-old family man's abrupt disappearance and continued lack of contact is highly out of character.

"It’s not like him at all to go somewhere without staying in touch," they informed reporters on Monday, noting that there was a final "ping" off Brown's cell phone which is still being investigated.

Dogs will be employed in today's search for BJ Brown and aerial searches are planned as well. In the meantime Senator Tindell says "people have been out on their four-wheelers" hoping to find the father-of-two still alive and safe.

Brody 'BJ' Brown is a full-bearded, athletic Caucasian adult male. Anyone who knows where he is or who has information about his sudden disappearance should contact the Hancock County Sheriff's Office at (228) 466-6900, or 911.