Stephen E. Smith

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Above: Smith, circa 1982

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: July 12, 1982 from Cashmere, Washington
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Age: 30 years old
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian male.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Smith was last seen at his home in Cashmere, Washington on July 12, 1982. His sister reported him missing on July 18. Several days later, his 1966 Pontiac Tempest was found abandoned on Dead Man's Hill Road near Dryden, Washington. He has never been heard from again. On July 31, when Smith's family members were cleaning his home, they found large amounts of blood on a mattress, towel, sofa and an ax handle, as well as a broken tooth, later determined to be Smith's.

    In March 2017, Bernard Swaim was charged with Smith's murder. Later that month, Dawn Soles, Swaim's ex-wife, was also charged with murder. Smith had previously been married to Soles and they had a two-year-old daughter together, but they were divorced by the time of his disappearance. He had full custody of their child and Soles had supervised visitation once a month. Authorities believe she and Swaim conspired to murder Smith so she could get custody of their daughter. In an interview with police, Soles implicated both Swaim and herself in Smith's death.

    A photo of Swaim is posted below this case summary. He and Soles are awaiting trial. Authorities hope to recover Smith's remains.

    Swaim
    Above: Bernard Swaim

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Chelan County Sheriff's Office
    509-667-6842

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    Source Information
    KXLY
    The Yakima Herald
    The Sky Valley Chronicle

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    Updated 1 time since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated March 19, 2017; casefile added.

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