Details of Disappearance Cary was last seen in the playground area of the Albert Einstein Hebrew Day School in the 1600 block of east Oakley Boulevard in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 25, 1978. His classmates told authorities that he entered an unidentified vehicle on the school's property during their lunchtime recess. He has never been heard from again.
Cary's parents, Sol and Marilyn Sayegh, received a ransom call from a male individual three hours after his son disappeared. The man demanded $500,000 for Cary's return, then claimed he would call again in two days with instructions as to how the ransom should be paid. The individual never contacted the family again.
Authorities quickly ruled out all of Cary's family members as suspects in his case. They believed one of Cary's father's former employees was responsible for his son's disappearance and the ransom call.
Jerald Howard "Jerry" Burgess was eventually convicted of the sexual assault on a woman at the Albert Einstein Hebrew Day School. The attack had taken place the week before Cary vanished from the same locale. Several of Cary's classmates identified Burgess as the man driving the vehicle Cary entered the day of his disappearance. Burgess said he was there, but only to deliver a lunch to his girlfriend's son, who was a friend of Cary's.
Other witnesses identified Burgess's voice as that of the ransom caller. He told investigators the location of one of Cary's shoes off Mohave Road in Las Vegas, but claimed that the child's abductors gave him the information when he acted as a go-between with them and the Sayegh family. Burgess maintained his innocence in Cary's abduction.
In 1982, Burgess was charged with kidnapping Cary. He claimed that he believed Cary was alive and residing in Israel after his trial, but he failed to provide evidence to support his statement. A jury acquitted him of all charges, citing a lack of evidence implicating him.
Burgess was arrested in October 2000 after he sold an illegal weapon to an undercover agent. As a convicted felon, he is legally forbidden to possess any kind of firearm or ammunition. During the preceding 18-month investigation into his criminal activities, Burgess also allegedly offered to dispose of a body near the location of Cary's supposed grave.
Burgess claimed that he could weld the body into a steel drum, and reportedly said he had killed Cary and disposed of his remains in that way in 1978. He rented welding equipment several days before Cary disappeared. He has not faced additional charges in Cary's case, but he was convicted of the firearms charges and sentenced to eleven years in prison. He was released in 2013 and lives in Las Vegas today.
Authorities said that they received a tip that Cary was living in Boston, Massachusetts in the 1990s. His case was reopened in 1999. Investigators continue to believe that he was the victim of foul play and are still searching for his remains.
Burgess remains the prime suspect in Cary's disappearance. His abduction is unsolved.
- Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department
Updated 5 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated February 12, 2020; details of disappearance updated.