Matt C. Abbott
Four unsolved cases
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By Matt C. Abbott
November 5, 2021

In addition to the 1998 unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz – a case I’ve been following and writing about for a number of years – I’m also intrigued by the 2001 unsolved disappearance of sisters Tionda and Diamond Bradley of Chicago; the 2017 unsolved murders of Abigail Williams and Liberty German in Delphi, Indiana; and the 2008 unsolved murders of five women at a Lane Bryant store in Tinley Park, Illinois.

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Regarding the Bradley sisters, nbcnews.com reported:

    When the girls went missing on July 6, 2001, Tionda and Diamond were living with their mother and two sisters — Victoria, then 9, and Rita, then 12 — in the Lake Grove Village Apartments complex on the South Side of Chicago….

    According to an investigation conducted by the FBI and the Chicago Police Department, the girls’ mother, Tracey Bradley, left the apartment for work around 6 a.m. She gave Tionda and Diamond strict instructions to not let anyone inside. Her other children, Victoria and Rita, had gone to their grandmother’s house the night before. When Tracey returned home around 11 a.m., the girls were gone and she said she found a note stating they had walked to the store and school playground nearby….

    Their disappearance sparked a massive search. Hundreds of Chicago police, federal law enforcement officers and civilian volunteers spent days and weeks searching the streets, sewers, abandoned factories and buildings. They interviewed dozens of people and nearly 100 registered sex offenders. But their efforts were unsuccessful….

    Anyone with information about Tionda and Diamond’s case is asked to contact the Chicago Police Department at 312-747-5789, the FBI Illinois at (312) 421-6700 or the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1 (800) THE-LOST.

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Regarding the Delphi murders, the FBI’s website has the following information:

    On February 13, 2017, Abigail Williams, age 13, and Liberty German, age 14, were hiking on the Delphi Historic Trail near the Monon High Bridge just east of Delphi in Carroll County, Indiana. Abigail and Liberty were reported missing to police after their parents were unable to locate them at the pick-up location. Volunteers subsequently discovered the girls’ bodies in the woods east of Delphi in Carroll County, Indiana, on February 14, 2017.

    Investigators have distributed a photo of a person observed on the Delphi Historic Trail. The photo appears to depict a white male wearing blue jeans, a blue coat/jacket, and a hoodie. During the course of the investigation, evidence has led investigators to believe the aforementioned person is suspected of being involved in the murders of Abigail Williams and Liberty German.

    Anyone with information is requested to contact the Delphi Homicide Tipline at 844-459-5786. All information will be taken and followed up on by investigators. All callers may remain anonymous. Tips can also be submitted online via abbyandlibbytip@cacoshrf.com.

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Regarding the Lane Bryant murders, patch.com reported:

    Another year has gone by without an arrest in Tinley Park's Lane Bryant slayings. It was on Feb. 2, 2008, when six women were shot, five fatally, inside a Lane Bryant store in the Brookside Marketplace at 191st and Harlem in Tinley Park.

    A gunman forced the six women — four shoppers, the store manager and an employee — to the back of the store and opened fire around 10:44 that Saturday morning. Killed were Connie R. Woolfolk, 37, of Flossmoor; Sarah T. Szafranski, 22, of Oak Forest; Carrie Hudek Chiuso, 33, of Frankfort; Rhoda McFarland, 42, of Joliet; and Jennifer L. Bishop, 34, of South Bend, Indiana. Only one woman, a store employee, survived after playing dead and waiting for the gunman to leave….

    Police say the suspect is a man between 6 feet and 6 feet 2 inches tall with a husky build and broad shoulders. He appeared to be 25 to 35 years old at the time of the killings, making him 38 to 48 years old today. He has a medium to dark skin complexion. The suspect was wearing a dark-colored waist-length jacket and black jeans with embroidery on the back pockets similar to a cursive ‘G.’ He also was wearing a charcoal gray skull cap.

    The Lane Bryant murders tip hotline at 708-444-5394 is still open and tips can be emailed to lanebryant.tipline@tinleypark.org. Tips can be anonymous.

© Matt C. Abbott

 

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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He also has an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management from Triton College. Abbott has been interviewed on HLN, MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 2019 ‘Unsolved’ podcast about the unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz, Alex Shuman's 'Smoke Screen: Fake Priest' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets. He’s mentioned in the 2020 Report on the Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 to 2017), which can be found on the Vatican's website. He can be reached at mattcabbott@gmail.com.

(Note: I welcome and appreciate thoughtful feedback. Insults will be ignored. Only in very select cases will I honor a request to have a telephone conversation about a topic in my column. Email is much preferred. God bless you and please keep me in your prayers!)

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