Kent County Sheriff to update case of Deanie Peters, missing since 1981

By The Grand Rapids Press

KENT COUNTY -- Cold-case investigators attempting to solve the 1981 disappearance of Deanie Peters have scheduled a news conference for Thursday to update their efforts, but authorities said they will not announce an arrest.

The team of five detectives set its eyes on solving the Peters case about 20 months ago, pledging to revisit all aspects of the 14-year-old's vanishing Feb. 5, 1981.

Kent County Sheriff Larry Stelma will address the probe but is not expected to declare any major developments toward an arrest or resolution.

As recently as May, the investigators used a backhoe to excavate a 30-foot-by-50-foot area behind an Ionia County schoolhouse while searching for Peters' remains. It was one of many areas authorities said they were taking another look at during the renewed focus.

Peters went missing from a wrestling practice at Forest Hills Middle School gymnasium after her mother said she left to use the bathroom. She hasn't been seen since, a case that has baffled investigators then and now.

Through the years, police have searched fields, looked into a school incinerator, sent divers into a shallow pond and searched a mound of rocks with cadaver dogs.

They have jailed a school janitor for a night, and questioned suspects in Lowell. Officers have traveled to other states including Kentucky and a visit to Florida's death row for an interview with a potential suspect.

No comments: