Mindy Lou Arnett

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Above: Mindy, circa 2002

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: August 14, 2002 from St. Ignace, Michigan
  • Classification: Lost/Injured Missing
  • Age: 20 years old
  • Height and Weight: 5'3, 125 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Brown hair, hazel eyes.
  • Medical Conditions: Mindy has a history of drug abuse and psychiatric problems, and was taking medication for her conditions at the time of her disappearance.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Mindy was last seen in St. Ignace, Michigan on August 14, 2002. Her daughter, Jersey Arnett, had been removed from her care by the state shortly after birth because child protective services received reports from family members that Mindy was mentally unstable, abused drugs, and neglected her. In the summer of 2002, Mindy's sister in Flint, Michigan received temporary custody of the baby. Mindy was living with her parents in Stockbridge, Michigan during this time period. She was taking psychiatric medication, attending weekly parenting classes, and making progress towards the goals she needed to reach in order to regain custody of her daughter. She visited Jersey frequently.

    At 6:30 p.m. on August 14, Mindy's sister and her husband left Mindy alone with Jersey at their home while the couple went out to dinner. When they returned, both Mindy and Jersey were missing. At 2:00 a.m. on August 15, Mindy's 1992 Honda Civic Del Sol was found parked midspan on the Mackinac Bridge, about 200 feet above the Straits of Mackinac. Investigators determined Mindy had driven across the bridge to the toll booth area, turned around and went back the other way, briefly got onto Interstate 75, then returned and drove north on the bridge. A motorist reported seeing a vehicle matching Mindy's car parked in the northbound passing lane. A woman was standing outside the vehicle reaching inside the rear door. An hour later, Mindy's car was found abandoned at that spot. Jersey's car seat was in the backseat. Mindy's purse, her keys, a diaper bag and a half-empty baby bottle were also in the car. There was no sign of either of them at the scene.

    Authorities believe Mindy jumped off the Mackinac Bridge with Jersey. She had attempted suicide earlier in 2002, and had previously threatened to kill herself and her daughter. An extensive search of the Straits of Mackinac turned up no sign of them; their bodies have never been found.

    Photographs and vital statistics for Jersey are unavailable. She was six months old at the time of her disappearance.

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Michigan State Police
    906-643-7582

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    Source Information
    NamUs
    The South Florida Sun-Sentinel
    Missing Mindy Arnett
    The Travis City Record-Eagle
    The Grand Rapids Press

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    Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated May 2, 2016; casefile added.

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