Cassie Compton has been missing for about a month from her family’s Stuttgart, Arkansas home. Earlier this month, 100s participated in a search for her, although nothing has been turned up yet. The case is getting some more attention because it was recently (last week, I think) featured on the Jane Velez Mitchell show — and the host tweeted it out as well:
This one is an interesting case that’s gotten some attention, but not a great deal — she did disappear around the same general time frame as Hannah Graham, which has gotten tons of attention, and Christina Morris, which has gotten almost none — and it seems like most of the theories loom in two directions, with a possible third. Let’s dive in.
1. There’s a guy based in her town named Dustin Blackwell. Here’s the last thing posted on her Facebook page prior to the disappearance:
As has been noted by a few other people — online sleuths, so take it with a grain of salt — that was essentially the last time either of them posted on Facebook. It looks suspect, but that doesn’t mean Blackwell did anything here, FYI.
2. Something could be weird with the family here — the party line on the night she disappeared is that she went out to get cigarettes, presumably by herself, and her family knew. Yet she was 15. You can’t buy cigs at 15, and even if you have a friendly local 7-11 or something, it seems like a weird dynamic. There’s also some story that the boyfriend called law enforcement and was told to wait 72 hours. (That typically doesn’t happen.)
3. The mother (Judy) and her boyfriend/fiancee (apparently named Brandon Rhodes) were heavily involved in contacting law enforcement during the early parts of this situation.
There’s been some speculation online — you saw a little of the same in the Natalee Holloway case with her stepfather — that maybe the Brandon Rhodes guy was messing with her and she ran away. Authorities in the area have said they don’t believe she was abducted, but they are involving the FBI and missing children resources.
I personally doubt the stepfather/mom’s boyfriend is involved, but … it’s always something to consider.
Here’s a bit more from Blackwell’s Facebook. Make of it what you’d like:
That could just be teenage posturing — Cassie was probably 15 or so, and Blackwell has been ID’ed as maybe 19/20 (although he does have a picture with kids in it, but they could be nephews or something). It’s possible that Dustin courted Cassie, something happened (or didn’t happen) briefly and then they moved on. It does seem a bit suspect that he stopped posting the day after she disappeared, but it could also be a coincidence. We just don’t know.
The mother is now speaking out:
And porch-light vigils are being held:
… in the local community, this is a case of note. It now has some national flair behind it too. And while it’s undoubtedly a bit of missing white woman syndrome, hopefully we can get to the bottom of this soon.