James Francis Ehrgott

Ehrgott, circa 2006; John Wayne Thomson

  • Missing Since 07/02/2006
  • Missing From Spokane, Washington
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Male
  • Race White
  • Date of Birth 03/31/1933 (86)
  • Age 73 years old
  • Height and Weight 6'0, 190 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Gray hair, brown eyes. Ehrgott wears prescription eyeglasses.

Details of Disappearance

Ehrgott was last seen at the Sportsman Cafe in the 6400 block of north Market Street in Spokane, Washington at 5:00 p.m. on July 2, 2006. He has never been heard from again. His gold Pontiac Sunfire was located on July 12. Witnesses said it had been driven by John Wayne Thomson. Thomson was not known to Ehrgott's family and he has a prior criminal history with three rape convictions. A photo of him is posted with this case summary.

Thomson is a suspected serial killer. Later in the summer of 2006, he was charged with murdering a California man in a botched carjacking. After his arrest, he confessed to killing Ehrgott.

Thomson stated he met Ehrgott at High Bridge Park, kidnapped him, stole his car and credit cards and left his body under a bridge. He was unfamiliar with the Spokane area and could not be specific about the location of the bridge.

Authorities were unable to locate Ehrgott's body in spite of an extensive search, but they believe Thomson's confession is true. He has been charged with Ehrgott's murder and the murder of a Washington woman whose body was found in August 2006.

Thomson was convicted of the California murder and sentenced to death in 2014. The two Washington murder cases against him are still pending.

Foul play is suspected in Ehrgott's case due to the circumstances involved.

Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated December 31, 2017; details of disappearance updated.