Randy Leach Disappearance
Randy Leach disappearance
- 20 years gone: Mystery, bizarre events surround missing teen case (04-16-08)
- KU play explores teen's disappearance (10-01-06)
- Still searching (01-28-05)
- Missing person case still unsolved (05-05-03)
- What happened to Randy Leach? (06-26-1988)
- Search for teen continues (04-26-1988)
- The Disappearance of Randy Leach Â»
During the past 20 years, there have been a number of oddities and bizarre coincidences surrounding the missing person case of Randy Leach including:
¢ Rumors of satanic activity in southern Leavenworth County already were circulating among locals before Randy's disappearance on April 16, 1988, at a bonfire party at the home of Annie Erwin. Word that the party site had quickly been cleaned fueled rumors, including speculation that Randy had been slaughtered there by devil worshippers.
¢ The Erwin house burned to the ground "not that long after" Randy disappeared, according to Leavenworth County Sheriff Herb Nye.
¢ In 1988, a man told police he had been abducted by satanists and held captive for two weeks in a cave not far from Linwood. The man said his abductors threatened to cut off his left arm and had shown him the corpse of a man hanging in the cave. The corpse perhaps was Randy. Police searched the cave but no bodies were found. They concluded the man was a drug user who hallucinated the experience. The cave has since been bulldozed at the entrances.
¢ Steve Daugherty, one of the last people seen with Randy the night he disappeared, showed police in March 1989 a severed foot in a tennis shoe on the banks of the Kansas River. Daughtery said he found it while strolling. Police searched the area for other remains but couldn't find any. They concluded the foot was not Randy's. Harold Leach said at one time, Daugherty lived in the back of an old store in Linwood and the part he lived in caught on fire and burned. Daugherty, in his 30s when Randy disappeared, has since died.
¢ The Leaches replaced a Dodge 500 that Randy took to the party and was never recovered with a Chrysler Lebaron that had about 40,000 miles on it. Just after they bought the car, it caught fire and burned in their backyard. An inspector said a gas line had deteriorated and ruptured. The Leaches believe it was arson.
¢ Randy's blonde German Shepherd, Crackers, went missing about four months after he did. The dog, that he had for about four years, was never found.
¢ Internal police reports about the Randy Leach case began showing up in the Leaches' mailbox. Harold Leach said he doesn't know the source of the documents but believes they were from sympathetic officers who were convinced the investigation was being botched.
¢ In 1993, a man purporting to be a "research journalist" offered his assistance to the Leaches and spent several months without pay interviewing partygoers and others who might have known something about the case. The man went by the names of Terry Martin and Lee Harper. Martin/Harper pooled information with Leavenworth County Sheriff's Detective Dawn Weston, whom Nye had assigned to review the case.
Executing warrants issued by the assistant Leavenworth County attorney, Weston arrested three men for the alleged murder and kidnapping of Randy Leach. The men were quickly released. "She was a new investigator and overzealous, so to speak," said Sheriff Nye. "It didn't pan out when the evidence was double-checked by the county attorney."
After the trio was freed, Weston and Martin/Harper left the state together for several days, reportedly fearful of their safety.
¢ A Topeka man who volunteered to help the Leaches search for their son subsequently was found shot to death along with his wife. Topeka police ruled it a murder-suicide.