Details of Disappearance
Melinda was placed in the Bronnenberg Children’s Home, an all-girls juvenile detention facility, on September 5, 1979 after she and another teenager were caught stealing motorcycles from a dealership. Two months later, the police went there to speak to Melinda in connection to another theft, but she was gone. It's unclear when and how she left the facility.
In 1994, Melinda's mother, Shirley Creech, told her other four children that a badly decomposed body found in New Jersey had been identified as Melinda. They believed her, although no funeral service was ever conducted for the child. When Shirley died in 2003, Melinda's siblings found letters among her personal effects which stated that dental records had proved that the New Jersey body was not Melinda's.
In 2004, police re-opened Melinda's missing persons case. They are currently tracking down and interviewing her old friends to see if any of them have heard from her. They do not know why Shirley lied to her family about Melinda's supposed death. Shirley had suffered from dementia for years prior to her passing, and perhaps she was simply confused. Melinda's siblings have described her as an extremely abusive parent.
There has been no activity on Melinda's Social Security number since 1979. Her father is now also deceased.