The Texas Cadet Murder Case
"I'll be able to remember my daughter with pride and joy for the rest of my life because she soars free in the atmosphere above me, coming to me in dreams, coming to me in vision and coming to give me in warmth. I'm grateful that I can have that memory."
-Linda Jones, Adrianne's mother.
The alarm clock rang insistently at 2:00 a.m. from a room down the hall, awakening one of Adrianne Jones's younger brothers from a deep sleep. Eventually, he got up, padded down the hall to his sister's bedroom, and turned off the timepiece. Adrianne was not in her bedroom, apparently out on one of her after-hours excursions. Unbeknownst to her parents, sometimes she would slip out of the house late at night, setting her alarm to wake herself up just a few hours after going to bed. Looking out the bedroom window into the night, the child watched a dark-colored pickup truck speeding away from the curb. Assuming that his sister had just left, he went back to bed. He was no tattletale.
At five o'clock or so, Linda Jones got up to make lunch for her husband. During their morning routine, they both heard the familiar sound of Adrianne's alarm clock ringing at 6:00 a.m. Bill went to work while Linda went back to bed for a few more hours of sleep.
It may have been because of the small-town feeling of Mansfield that helped Bill Jones decide to move his family from the Dallas area. He and Linda, and their three children---Adrianne and two younger sons---moved to a modest neighborhood, homes clustered together and small postage type green lawns. It certainly appeared to be a secure family area.
Linda, a 39-year-old massage therapist, and Bill, a heavy equipment mechanic, cherished their children. Protective parents, they tended to be strict with their only daughter, Adrianne, nicknamed A.J. They took great pride in her achievements and in her reputation.
Adrianne Jessica Jones, a bubbly 16-year-old, was a very pretty girl with her sun-kissed blond, moderately long wavy hair, and green eyes. A mere 5 ft. 3 in., 116 lbs., one boy described her as the kind of girl that was "not just good looking, but I mean good lookin.' " With a combination of good looks, outgoing personality, and her love of sports, Adrianne was also popular. A sophomore attending Mansfield High School, Adrianne was an honor student, taking her schooling seriously. On a typical school day, she attended classes and enjoyed hanging out with her friends. When she went anywhere important, she spent a lot of time putting on makeup and taking full advantage of her good looks. According to one of her best friends, Adrianne was a bit of a flirt. Also, she was a school socialite and was remembered by her friends and classmates as having great school spirit.
At seven o'clock, Linda noticed that her daughter wasn't there. Linda had assumed that after setting her alarm clock for an early morning wake-up that Adrianne had gone running. But she should have returned by then. Since Adrianne had injured her knee during soccer, her mother wondered if she might have been lying somewhere injured. Then Linda noticed that Adrianne's bed was still made and her books were still on her desk. She began to worry.
Linda drove her son to school and then came back home, anxiously looking for any clue about where Adrianne might be. She found Adrianne's little telephone book and began calling the various phone numbers. Then, when she noticed that Adrianne's running shoes were still in her bedroom, she knew that something was terribly wrong.