Details of Disappearance Jennifer was last seen at approximately 5:30 a.m. on May 5, 2005, at the Reno Sparks Cab Company, her mother's place of work, in the vicinity of the 400 block of Gentry Way in Reno, Nevada. She stopped by there to visit her mother, but her mother was not working at the time.
Jennifer was intoxicated and didn't have enough money to pay her cab fare. She ran from the taxi, climbed over a fence at the back of the establishment and disappeared. She has never been heard from again.
The night before her disappearance, Jennifer's husband, Sean Ross, came home and found her drunk and saying she needed to leave. She had her belongings and family photos packed. Sean initially tried to change her mind, but he let her go after Jennifer insisted. She went to the Peppermill Hotel and Casino with a friend early on the morning of her disappearance. Witnesses reported she had self-inflicted cuts on her arms and wrists.
Jennifer was unemployed at the time of her disappearance; she had worked as an exotic dancer, but had been terminated from several jobs due to her substance abuse. She was fired from her last job a week before her disappearance. She had previously been a professional ballerina. That career ended due to a tailbone injury, but she still gave ballet lessons.
Jennifer was deep in debt at the time of her disappearance, and her credit cards were maxed out. She left her broken high heels behind and two notes, one stained with her own blood. The notes directed who should be permitted to have contact with her young son if anything should happen to her, and stated her possessions should go to Sean.
Jennifer was raised in Pocatello, Idaho and graduated Highland High School there; she moved to Reno in 1995. She attended Truckee Meadows Community College and then transferred to the University of Nevada at Reno. She was a Dean's List student and majored in veterinary medicine before switching to biomedical engineering. She also tutored in physics and mathematics. She was one year away from completing her degree at the time of her disappearance, and had dreamed of finding a cure for autism or cancer.
Sean stated Jennifer suffered from postpartum depression after their son's birth and became addicted to drugs and alcohol. She has previously attempted suicide and had gone missing before for several days at a time, though never for this long.
Sean has cooperated with authorities in the investigation and is not considered a suspect in Jennifer's disappearance. He filed for divorce three months after her disappearance and is raising their son.
A few minutes before she vanished, Jennifer called her father in Las Vegas, Nevada and said she needed to go to that city, but she apparently never arrived there.
It is uncharacteristic of Jennifer to leave without warning and her mother believes she met with foul play, but the circumstances surrounding her disappearance are unclear.
- Reno Police Department
Updated 7 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated May 18, 2010; distinguishing characteristics and details of disappearance updated.