Joyce Gaines Crider

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Above Images: Joyce, circa 2002

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: October 27, 2002 from Lexington, Kentucky
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date of Birth: January 27, 1970
  • Age: 32 years old
  • Height and Weight: 5'3, 230 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Red hair, blue eyes. Joyce limps. Her previous married name is Steuart. One of her teeth is missing; another tooth has a filling and another has both a filling and a root canal.
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description: A black jacket, a white t-shirt, blue jeans and black high heels.
  • Medical Conditions: Joyce needs a knee brace to walk very far. The brace was left behind. She was taking medication for emotional problems at the time of her disappearance.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Joyce was last seen in Lexington, Kentucky at 7:15 p.m. on October 27, 2002. She she she was going to visit her estranged husband, Bill Crider Jr., at the Holiday Inn on Athens-Boonesboro Road, where he lived. She never returned. Joyce left behind all her belongings, including her knee brace and her dogs. Her car, a dark green 1993 Nissan Infiniti G20 with the Kentucky license plate number 035-DKD, disappeared with her. It was found, covered with snow, in a parking lot on Winchester Road in December 2002, six weeks after she vanished. There were indications that someone other than Joyce drove the vehicle to that location.

    Joyce was having personal problems at the time she disappeared. She and her husband were in the process of a divorce, which was finalized in 2003. Joyce's home and all its contents had been destroyed in a gas explosion the year she disappeared, her husband's truck had caught fire and was ruined, one her dogs had died suddenly, and the Criders were involved in several lawsuits. Bill said Joyce became depressed after their house was destroyed and threatened to commit suicide. She sought medical assistance and was prescribed medication. Her attorney and her loved ones stated she was in good spirits at the time of her disappearance and looking forward to getting on with her life.

    Bill was Joyce's second husband; her first marriage, in 1998, lasted only four months. A photo of him is posted below this case summary. The Criders' divorce was acrimonious and there was a court order prohibiting them from contacting each other. Joyce disappeared the day before she was scheduled to give a deposition in the divorce case; she was allegedly going to implicate her husband in insurance fraud. Bill admitted he initially lied about when he last saw Joyce. He's considered a person of interest in Joyce's disappearance. Police searched his property several times looking for her remains, but they found nothing. Bill maintained his innocence in her case and stated he had proof that Joyce was still alive. He was killed in a car accident in February 2013, over a decade after her disappearance.

    Joyce was taking a course in medical transcription at the time of her disappearance. She has previously done clerical work for various retail stores. Her hobbies include watching movies and collecting dolls and clowns. Joyce's bank accounts and cellular phone have been inactive since her disappearance. Her case remains unsolved and foul play is suspected. She was declared legally dead in November 2009.

    Bill Crider
    Above: Bill Crider

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Lexington Police Department
    859-258-3700

    OR
    Bluegrass Crimestoppers
    859-253-2020

    OR
    877-970-2020

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    Source Information
    WTVQ 36
    WYMT TV 57
    The Lexington Herald-Leader
    NamUs
    LEX 18

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    Updated 7 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated February 10, 2013; details of disappearance updated.

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