Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Police Release Sketch of the Suspect in Jessica Heeringa Abduction

Missing poster for Jessica posted on the Find Jessica Heering Facebook Page.

Missing poster for Jessica posted on the Find Jessica Heering Facebook Page.

More details have emerged in the case of missing Michigan mom Jessica Heeringa, who is believed to have been abducted from her job at a North Shores Exxon station on Friday April 26, 2013, possibly by someone she knew.

There were no security cameras at the gas station where Jessica worked, but surveillance cameras at a nearby business showed a silver or gray Chevrolet van leaving the area at about the time police believe that Jessica was abducted. The footage was released to the public and is shown below.

Also witness emerged, Christian VanAntwerpen, who in the store adjacent to the Exxon station and was buying gas at there about three hours before Jessica was reported missing. VanAntwerpen told investigators that he saw a van pull into the station whose driver engaged Jessica in casual banter, “He was just like, ‘Hey, what are you doing over here? Aren’t you supposed to be inside?’ Just kind of being real flirty, weird about it,” VanAntwerpen told ABC News.

He didn’t realize just how weird until he found out that Jessica had been abducted, “It just seemed to me that this was just another guy hitting on her, or whatever, because she was an attractive girl, … It was just bizarre that he seemed to be actively looking for her, like he knew her and then had this attitude that he wanted to have a conversation with her and then conduct business, and that is what seemed really out of place to me.” He concluded saying that though it was tantamount to an afterthought, he thought it was his responsibility to say something to police.

Sketch of a suspect released by North Shores PD.

Sketch of a suspect released by North Shores PD.

On April 30 police released this sketch of the suspect based on witness descriptions, and also released the 911 call alerting police to Jessica’s disappearance. The audio for the 911 call is overlaid on the surveillance video shown below.

Police are still searching for a gray or silver minivan shown in the surveillance footage below. The driver is described as a white male, 30 to 40 years old, six-feet tall, with a medium-to-heavy build and broad shoulders. He has light brown or dark blond, wavy hair and was seen wearing a bright red or orange sweatshirt.

Jessica Heeringa is a white female, 5-feet 1-inch tall, weighing about 110 pounds, with blond, shoulder-length hair and blue eyes. She may be wearing wire-rim glasses and may be wearing a blue collared shirt with “Sternberg Exxon” on it.

Anyone with any information or who may have tips is urged to call Silent Observer at 231-72-CRIME (231-722-7463) or call 911.

Her family is still posting updates on the Find Jessica Heeringa Facebook page.

Update: Missing Mother Jessica Heeringa


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