TROY, Mo. – The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office is asking for the public’s help in a decades-old missing child investigation. Investigators believe new information may help them piece together what happened to an 11-year-old boy who went missing over 30 years ago.
The sheriff’s office says that a murder in 2000 may be connected to the disappearance of Charles Arlin Henderson on July 25, 1991.
Arlin was last seen riding his bicycle in the Fountain N’ Lakes subdivision of Moscow Mills. The bike was found 10 weeks later, in a bean field off of North Ethlyn Road, about five miles away from his home.
The sheriff’s office believes somebody associated with Charles’s late sister, Joy Henderson-Leonard, and her late husband, Bob, knows something. Lead Investigator Capt. Wade O’Heron tells FOX 2 that Joy and Bob were married when Arlin disappeared.
“There’s a sense of urgency for us to at least reach out to known associates, just to have a conversation with them,” O’Heron said. “To see if during their time, during their relationship with Joy or Bob, if there were ever any statements made in reference to Arlin’s case.”
In 2000, Bob murdered Joy and then took his own life. Investigators believe they may have had crucial information related to Arlin’s disappearance.
“We’re, of course, digging into it again, trying to find any means possible to get the smallest clue to get some closure for the family trying to find out what really happened,” said Chief Deputy Undersheriff Randy Lambert. “We’ve exhausted all our means of talking to all of our known personnel that’s involved. Now we’d like to try to reach out and try to find additional information; additional people to talk to.”
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that in 2001, a man confessed to killing Arlin, pleaded guilty to murder, and said that two other men put him up to it. He later said that he made up the story.
“The mom, the family members, the loved ones… I mean, they’re left with a huge hole in their heart, and they’ve been suffering,” O’Heron said.
“There’s not a day goes by that I don’t think of my son,” Arlin’s mother, Deborah, told FOX 2 in July.
Law enforcement are asking the public to come forward to help solve this mystery. You can call them at 636-462-6153 or submit a tip online here. You may remain anonymous.
“We would just want to urge the public that if they believe they have any information related to this case, however small, even if they don’t think it’s significant, we’d like to hear from them,” O’Heron said.