Marsilene Smith

Marsilene, circa 2007; Palmer Smith

  • Missing Since 12/06/2007
  • Missing From Murfreesboro, Tennessee
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Date of Birth 05/08/1938 (79)
  • Age 69 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'4, 139 pounds
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description A beige long-sleeved t-shirt, a blue denim jacket, faded blue jeans, black zip-up ankle boots, a yellow gold band with diamonds on her left hand, and a yellow gold band with three diamonds on her right hand.
  • Medical Conditions Marsilene is a diabetic and insulin-dependent and requires a special diet. She could become disoriented or go into diabetic shock if she is without her insulin for more than a couple of days. The last time she took it was on the morning of her disappearance.
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian female. Blonde hair, blue eyes. Some agencies spell Marsilene's first name "Marcelene" or give it as "Marcia." Her nickname is Marcie (sometimes spelled "Marsi"). She wears eyeglasses and she has a dime-sized birthmark on her forehead.

Details of Disappearance

Marsilene was last seen in Murfreesboro, Tennessee on December 6, 2007. She went Christmas shopping at 1:30 p.m. that day; she normally shops at the K-Mart, Old Time Pottery, Kroger, Stones River Mall and the Avenue Murfreesboro.

Marsilene normally returned to her home in the 400 block of Village Green by dark, by on the day of December 6 she did not and she has never been heard from again. Her husband of 51 years, Glover Palmer Smith, who goes by his middle name, reported her missing at 6:00 p.m.

A photograph of Palmer is posted with this case summary. He later told police Marislene was carrying $600 and may have had as much as $10,000 in cash with her.

The morning after her disappearance, Marsilene's champagne-colored Lincoln Navigator SUV was found in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart store on south Rutherford Boulevard, with no sign of her at the scene. The SUV's keys were in the ignition and the passenger door was open.

Surveillance camera footage of the parking lot showed a man get out of the driver's seat of the vehicle at 2:30 p.m. on the day Smith disappeared, remove a bright green bicycle from the back and ride away. He rode south, in the direction of the Applebee's restaurant. The bicycle appeared to be a girl's or a woman's bike, but it was not Marsilene's and her loved ones did not recognize it. The camera footage indicates Marsilene was not in or near the SUV when it was parked there.

Marsilene carried a cellular phone at the time of her disappearance, but did not use it after she went missing. The phone's GPS tracking device continued to transmit a signal, however. Several days later, police found the phone off Barfield Crescent Road. This is about three miles from her home, and about nine miles in the opposite direction from where her car was found. There was no evidence of Marsilene's whereabouts at the scene.

Palmer quickly stopped cooperating with police in Marsilene's disappearance and hired a lawyer. Three months after Marsilene disappeared, another woman accused Palmer of stalking her and took out a restraining order to keep him away from her. The woman said Palmer had repeatedly asked her for a date and continued to call her at work after she asked him to stop, and that he referred to Marsilene in the past tense.

Palmer also purchased a coffin and a headstone for Marsilene. He has not been charged in connection with his wife's disappearance, but, in March 2009 he was charged with two counts of evidence tampering and six counts of making false statements to the police in Marsilene's disappearance.

At Palmer's trial in April 2010, the prosecution alleged it who he who had parked Marsilene's car in the Wal-Mart and rode away on the bicycle in the back, and also that he told several lies to the police about various aspects of Marsilene's disappearance.

Palmer and Marsilene's adult son, Evan, testified against him, describing his father as physically and mentally abusive. Evan stated Marsilene was hospitalized in 2004 after she allegedly fell down the stairs, but he believed her injuries came from a beating at Palmer's hands. Palmer maintained his innocence, but he was convicted of all charges. He was sentenced to a year in jail and six years of probation.

Marsilene's loved ones describe her as a reliable person who would be unlikely to leave without warning; they fear she was abducted or had a diabetic reaction that caused her disappearance. Authorities believe foul play is possible in her case and have not ruled out the possibility that a family member or someone else she knew was involved. Her case remains unsolved.

Updated 6 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated October 26, 2017; distinguishing characteristics and clothing/jewelry description updated.