Details of Disappearance Cheryl dropped her fifteen-year-old daughter off at Stebbins High School in Riverside, Ohio on October 2, 2018. She came back home, arriving at 7:35 a.m., and made several Facebook posts. She has never been heard from again. Her sister reported her missing that night, after Cheryl's daughter called her to say she couldn't find her mother.
Her cellular phone pinged near the Kroger grocery store in the 700 block of Spinning Road at 10:52 a.m., at the same time Cheryl's Toyota Highlander was seen pulling into the parking lot and parking on the eastside, near Clancy's Tavern. A Caucasian man dressed in black, including a hood pulled up over his head, got out of the car and walked north toward Burkhardt Road.
At 11:13 a.m., a witness called 911 to report a "suspicious person", the man in black, walking in the neighborhood near the Coker residence. The man used his hands to cover his face when the 911 caller drove past him. The witness saw him walking up Spring Garden Place at Christy Avenue, towards the back of Spinning Hills Middle School.
A second witness also saw the man in black in the vicinity at that time and also called 911. This witness noted he was wearing cold-weather clothes, even though temperatures that day were unseasonably warm. Exterior surveillance cameras at the middle school showed him walking towards the back of the Coker residence at 11:10 a.m.
Surveillance cameras in the area of Chery's house show a man dressed in black walking from a grocery store parking lot to the Coker residence on Christy Lane. A witnessed called 911 at the time and reported the man as a suspicious person. A second witness also saw the man in black, and gave the same description of him.
The night after Cheryl's disappearance, the police found her Toyota Highlander in the Kroger parking lot, where the man in black had left it. Her purse and cellular phone were in a backpack inside. The phone was still turned on.
Cheryl's husband of nineteen years, William "Bill" Coker, is the only suspect in her disappearance. The couple had a troubled relationship and William was seeing another woman, something Cheryl was aware of. She had recently filed for divorce from William and was seeking custody of their daughter and spousal support.
William was sighted on surveillance video inside the Kroger grocery store at 8:08 p.m. on the day of Cheryl's disappearance. He was wearing a black polo shirt, dark-colored shorts and dark-colored shoes, and had a visible injury on his left arm above his elbow. He made a purchase and left the store a few minutes later. Investigators haven't said whether they've identified William as the suspicious man in black seen by the witnesses that morning.
William has not cooperated with the investigation, has refused to take a polygraph, and in the four months after Cheryl's disappearance, he only contacted the police for an update one time. Authorities do not have enough evidence to charge him with any crimes, however, and he maintains his innocence. He claims his wife was engaging in unspecific "risky behavior" prior to her disappearance.
Authorities believe Cheryl was the victim of a homicide. Her case remains unsolved.
- Riverside Police Department
Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004. Last updated January 1, 2020; casefile added.