Gail Lorraine Joiner

Gail, circa 1972; Gerald Stano in 1981

  • Missing Since 09/22/1972
  • Missing From Thonotosassa, Florida
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Female
  • Race White
  • Date of Birth 07/22/1959 (64)
  • Age 13 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'0, 100 pounds
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description A navy blue and white striped pullover shirt, Levi's jeans and no shoes.
  • Associated Vehicle(s) White car
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian female. Blonde/brown hair, brown eyes. Gail has a scar on her cheek. She has facial freckles.

Details of Disappearance

Gail was last seen in her hometown of Thonotosassa, Florida on September 22, 1972. She came home from school, ate a sandwich, then left home to walk her pet raccoon, Bandit, on a leash. Witnesses saw her standing near a white car parked on the edge of a wooded area, but nobody saw her get in the vehicle.

Gail has never been heard from again. Bandit never returned to the house either. Gail's parents thought they could identify the raccoon by a burn on its foot and a scrape on its nose. The police brought them 17 raccoon carcasses, but they didn't recognize any of them.

Gail's parents stated they did not believe their daughter had left of her own free will, because she was close to her older brother and wasn't having trouble at home. They theorized she had been abducted, and stated someone could have gained her trust by taking an interest in Bandit, whom she enjoyed showing to people.

Three people have confessed to Gail's murder but none of the accounts have been verified. The serial killer Gerald Stano was one of the those who claimed to have caused her death; he confessed to the murders of 41 women, including Susan Basile, whose body was never found. A photograph of Stano is posted with this case summary. He was executed in 1998.

Gail moved to Florida from Romulus, Michigan a few months before her disappearance, and enrolled in Greco Junior High School three weeks before she vanished. She has six siblings. Her case remains unsolved.

Updated 4 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated March 25, 2020; clothing/jewelry description updated.