Richard Lawrence Atwood

Atwood, circa 1983; Atwood's 1975 Pontiac Trans Am; Roy Snell in 2020

  • Missing Since 08/23/1983
  • Missing From White Cloud, Michigan
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Male
  • Race White
  • Age 25 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'10, 175 pounds
  • Associated Vehicle(s) Brown 1975 Pontiac Trans Am with the license plate number 490CNJ (accounted for)
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Blond hair, hazel eyes.

Details of Disappearance

Atwood was last seen in White Cloud, Michigan on August 10, 1983. He was driving a brown 1975 Pontiac Trans Am with the license plate number 490CNJ; a photo of it is posted with this case summary. When his girlfriend returned to the trailer they shared, she noticed he was missing and his fishing gear was gone as well.

He was reported missing by his family on August 23, after their own attempts to locate him failed. His car was found at a service station on East Leonard Avenue in Grand Rapids, Michigan, about fifty miles away from White Cloud, on October 17. Inside was blood and human tissue, later linked to Atwood, and part of a broken shovel.

In March 2020, Roy Leando Snell was arrested in Minneapolis, Minnesota and charged with felony murder and felony firearms in Atwood's case. The two men knew each other. Authorities believe robbery was the motive for the murder.

Snell is the last person known to have been seen with Atwood before he disappeared, he made "incriminating statements" in the years after Atwood's disappearance, and his DNA was found on cigarette butts in Atwood's car. A photo of Snell is posted with this case summary. In November 2022, he was found guilty as charged. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Atwood's body has never been found. Foul play is suspected in his case due to the circumstances involved.

Investigating Agency

  • Michigan State Police 231-873-2171

Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated March 20, 2024; details of disappearance updated.