The Humboldt Five: “So Many Missing From Such a Small Area”

Humboldt missing five

To raise awareness of local women who’ve disappeared under suspicious circumstances, a new graphic was recently released.

Today, hoping to get answers for the families of five Humboldt women that disappeared under suspicious circumstances, missing person activists launched a social media campaign. The campaign includes a Facebook page for the five missing women, share-able graphics (see image above,) a hashtag (#‎HumboldtMissingFive‬) and an interactive map (see photo below) of where the women disappeared. So-Cal Advocates For The Missing and their partners urge community members to share these images and this story in hopes that clues to the whereabouts of the women might emerge.

Heather Miller, a family advocate for NorCal Alliance for the Missing, designed the map. She said she was asked by a colleague to create it and was surprised by how much she learned in the process. “I was already familiar with the cases from research I had done on …Humboldt and the surrounding counties….I think [this] gives a new perspective, by combining their information and photos with a map showing you the locations that they are missing from.”

“As I was making it,” she said, “I feel it gave me a bigger picture…[The women] are more than just a name and photo on a missing person flyer. These are real people, who are missing from real places….Someone loves them and is searching for them.”

Humboldt 5

For the interactive map, click this link.

Who Are the Missing Women:

A spokesperson for the Humboldt Missing Five page said she found it curious that “so many were missing from such a small area.” She had recently formed a successful campaign around five men who had vanished in the Bay Area and has hopes that grouping the women together will help the community think about the disappearances in new ways–ways which might lead to uncovering what happened to them.


Christine Walters: A week before she vanished on November 14th, 2008, a naked, scratched and bleeding Christine asked for help at a home on Tompkins Hill Road. She said she was being followed. After being taken to the hospital, Christine made plans to return to her Wisconsin family. She never made it.She was last seen at a copy store in Eureka. A recent post about her on Facebook was shared over 7000 times. Consequently there has been a renewed excitement about the case. A spokesperson for So-Cal Advocates for the Missing said several people have called in with possible sightings this last week in the Eureka area.

Last seen: Nov 14, 2008

Where: Eureka, CA

Description when last seen: White female, 5’1″, a little over 100 pounds. Red hair, green eyes. A tattoo on her neck and another on her hip.

sheilaSheila Franks- Sheila Franks and Danielle Bertolini disappeared within a week of each other. Family members claim they were both last seen with the same man. Learn more about Sheila here.

Last seen: 2 Feb 2014

Where: Rio Dell

Description when last seen:  White female, 37 years old, 5’5” tall and approximately 120 lbs., strawberry blond hair, blue eyes. 


Danielle Bertolini– The disappearance of Danielle Bertolini and Sheila Franks has received extensive coverage locally and nationally. The two women knew each other. Family members are convinced their cases are connected. See more information on Danielle here.

Last seen:  February 9, 2014

Where: Swain’s Flat

Description when last seen: White female, 23 years old, 5’2″, 105 pounds, blond hair, blue eyes.


Karen Mitchell- Karen’s case received national attention this month when her disappearance was linked to millionaire and multiple murder suspect Robert Durst. Durst lived in Trinidad at the time.

Last seen: November 25, 1997

Where: Karen was last seen on Broadway in Eureka

Description when last seen: White female,16 years old, 5’5″, 130 pounds, sandy hair, blue/green eyes.


Jennifer “Jade” Wilmer: Technically, Jade was living in Trinity County when she disappeared but she was last seen hitchhiking to Willow Creek and had previously lived in Eureka.

After her daughter’s disappearance, Jade’s mother, Susan, helped push through Jennifer’s Law which required states “to report information concerning unidentified bodies into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database. This procedure provides easier cross-referencing of missing persons and unidentified victims in the US.” (Information from here.)

Last seen: September 13, 1993

Where: hitchhiking between Hawkins Bar and Willow Creek.

Description when last seen: Brown hair, blue eyes. 5’2″ 100 pounds. Dreads. Left eyebrow has faint scar.

More on the Missing:

Jeff JosephHeather Miller says that there are several missing men in the area, too. One, Jeff Joseph, disappeared last June. There is a $10,000 reward in his case. Miller urges people to share the information about the women and Joseph. “He is deeply missed and his family is actively searching everyday,” she said. “For families like these support from the local communities is so important! I believe that when people come together and help one another, amazing things can happen!”

If you have any information on any of these missing person cases, please contact Humboldt Sheriff’s Office at 707-445-7251. Or report information anonymously on the Sheriff’s Tipline 707-268-2539.



  • Kym,

    Is there a way to share this post? My aunty was head of the missing persons department for SF PD and is recently retired….I would like to see if she has any advice/insight.

  • Kehala Williams

    What about sumi juan missing from hoopa? This is the third article that has focused on missing persons of Humboldt county but not one has mentioned her. I really hope it isn’t because she is native American?

  • My niece, Charlene Rosser, was missing since 1998. Her remains were found in 2012 around the Turlock area, however, she went missing from Eureka.

    I wonder how many more there are that aren’t mentioned on here.

  • Thank you Kym!

    • I so hope someone remembers something.

      • First off so good to see your still working locally as reporter!! Thanks so much for this new article. We just simply CAN NOT let these people be forgotten and swept under the rug as way to much stuff in Humboldt usually is. Sadly the saying “if you want to murder someone and get away with it,do it in Humboldt”,just keeps proving to be true

        • The work the activists are doing to get out the word helps tremendously. Then every time someone shares the information, there is a chance that the right person will see it and remember something helpful.

  • Hello,
    I am Shawn Dickerson`s mom ~ He is one of the California 5 .. I `m glad to see and think its a good idea to group these you women together. There`s power in numbers and prayer .
    God bless your heart

  • thank you for sharing ..

  • friend of Eric Day!

    Eric Day isn’t mentioned!! Hes been missing since 96-97 please add him to it!

  • Tabetha Connell

    I’m happy to see that people take this sort of time. But, as it has been over 20 years now since the disappearance of my mother (Hannah Jane Rowell missing since 1993) I wonder what my family has done wrong. It is a cold case with no new evidence and no recognition.

    • Tabetha, I’d never heard of her. I goggled her and now I’m going to share her information with the folks that run the missing persons’ pages.

  • Anastasia Conlin

    You are doing a good thing. Keep looking. Talk, talk, talk to the people who knew the missing women and men. Someone always knows something.

  • Call me over paranoid, but I noticed a pattern in all the missing females you shared; they are all white, 5’5 to 5’1, 100-120 lbs, and light brown to blonde in hair color. This is either the creepiest Redwood Curtain coincidence, or there might be a serial killer in Humboldt.

    • I noticed the same thing, and sadly I don’t think it’s a coincidence. I had a friend who was going to school for criminology focused on profiling serial killers. What she told me she learned from her professor was there is a staggering number of these killers out there. The problem though is they can’t tell the public for fear of more murders due to the publicity, as well as copycats, and mass public fear. It’s very scary to think. My thoughts and prayers are with all who are affected by the disappearance of they’re loved ones.

    • I noticed the same thing right away. Robert Durst may have been living in Trinidad, but there are planes that go both ways back and forth from Trinidad. I sure am hopeful that the police prove he wasn’t only just living in Trinidad, but can prove he was in Trinidad the day these woman went missing. If you look at pictures of Robert Durst’s wife who is also “missing”, they all look so similar in all characteristics.

      Christine Walters, Karen Mitchell, and Jennifer Wilmer similarities are so close; Height, weight, complexion and hair color.

      Christine Walters is a Wisconsinite and I pray for her family always. Christine Walters also shares both of my daughters middle name Christine and Lindsey.

    • I’ve noticed the same thing

    • That would be ANOTHER serial killer…there have been several in the 45 years I have been here. It is devastating how much damage all of us suffer at the hands of a few.

  • Kym,

    Another female is missing and should be added to this group. Her name is Sumi Juan and she was from Hoopa CA. I can’t give you the dates that she went missing but that would be easy to find for whomever is tracking these girls.

    I can give you the following information. She was someone who mattered a great deal to many people including me. She was sweet, kind, thoughtful and smart. She also trusted people. She has three daughters who would love to know what happened to their mother. She was young when she went missing, around 30 years old.

    Most of the folks who know her believe that she was murdered. I remember talking with her daughter who was about 5 years old a few days after she was missing. When I asked when she had last seen her mother, she said, “She is gone now Pamlyn. She had on white pants, a pink sweatshirt and white tennis shoes. Can you find her for me?” She then handed me a post it note that says “Charlene Love Pamlyn” that I have hanging in my kitchen and will cherish forever. It wasn’t that she “loved me” it was that she loved that I cared that her mother was missing and that I would try to look for her.

    I got a search party together that included folks from the Valley and the Coast. We walked and walked that river. I told everyone the clothing description that Charlene had given me so they could be on the lookout for pink and white clothing. Lynne Soderberg, the Chief at HSU PD turned to me and said, ” We are looking for bones Pamlyn” I think that was when I got that Sumi might not be coming home to her three girls.

    We didn’t find her and there have been stories about who did what to her. She is missing to this day. I was hopeful last week when they found bones up in the Valley that it would be Sumi so we could have closure for her kids and some sort of remembrance for Sumi Jaun. She mattered to many of us and she should be one of the missing. Make that six Kym. Thank you- Pamlyn

    • Pamlyn, that is such a heartfelt remembrance. Thank you.
      Yesterday someone pointed out Sumi to me and I have passed her information to the missing persons’ advocates. The story you told of her little girl really brings home to me how important finding our missing women (and men) is.

    • Pamlyn , We have a Facebook page set up where we started with the five and we are adding the other women we find that are missing in Humboldt County . We added her information yesterday on the page . This is so incredible for all of us to hear your story . Please like the page and send us photos of her .

  • Thank you Kym. I probably have photo’s of her somewhere if they are needed.

  • Wow. It is stories like yours, Pamlyn, that will keep the light shining on these missing girls/women and men.

  • April Bertolini

    Thank you for all you’ve done Kym. We pray that people will come forward that have some knowledge of where our missing loved ones are – and what happened to them! Think about the hearts that are breaking and need closure on this part of their loved one’s life. Put yourself in their position for a minute and do the right thing.

  • Great work Kym, but it might be needful to alter the campaign to cover more ground and less gender. #humboldtdisappeared

  • I hope these women et the justce they deserve

  • It sounds like it might be someone everyone trusted possibly a cop and that could be why no one is looking. I’m just saying, who’s the person in charge in that county. Wouldn’t you be looking for these people if you where in charge of everyone’s saftey. I know i would. It Looks a little Suspicious to me.

  • It sounds like it might be someone everyone trusted possibly a cop and that could be why no one is looking. I’m just saying, who’s the person in charge in that county. Wouldn’t you be looking for these people if you where in charge of everyone’s saftey. I know i would. It Looks a little Suspicious to me. Possibly chp

  • every one should check into the missing and found women and men in Shasta county

  • There are two beautiful young women from Hoopa who should be on that list.
    Sumi Juan and Chick White……Please add there information. Both of their cases are listed as suspicious and they too are from Humboldt County.

  • Mendocino Co. Sheriff’s web page has a section just for missing people. They list 11 men and 5 women as missing. One goes back to 1976, the most recent missing one year ago this month.

    I am wondering why Humboldt Co. Sheriff doesn’t offer this information. Why do Humboldt Co. and Shasta Co. families have to create web pages for their missing? Trinity Co. Sheriff’s web page list one person missing.

  • My brother Louie Taylor should be put on here he was murdered in 08 in Xenia can..and no one will do anything

  • Stephen Wilmer

    Thank you for including my sister and not allowing this very real problem, of missing persons, to be ignored. Good bless you!

    • Stephen, of course. If you think of any detail that you wish would have been included let me know. A missing persons group is working on a map of the missing in Humboldt. I can ask them to include more information.

  • Pingback: In a Press Release Today, Family States Missing Woman’s Skull Positively Identified, Urges Search for Second Woman Continue | Redheaded Blackbelt

  • Sumi Juan is still missing. Missing since September. I hope the organizers and your readers see this and add her. Thanks!

  • I'd rather not say

    Charlene Rosser went missing on Mother’s Day in 1998. Her body was found a few years later in some brush on the side of the road near Truckee.

    Her disappearance and murder has never been solved. She went missing from Eureka.

  • Kym,
    My 27yr old daughter Jessalyn Dean has been missing since the end of September 2015. She was last known to be in the Humboldt County area.
    I would like to know how I can get her added to this list as well as help with finding her. Please contact me.

  • Concerned Citizen

    Have you made progress on the list of missing persons?

  • Danielle Bertolini was identified when a skull was found on the banks of the Van Duzen around the Grizzly Creek area in the past year or two.

  • This sounds a lot like the Ohio missing women….

  • What ever happened with that skeleton found next to the Eel River on Halloween? Down by Piercy. Any identification on that yet?

  • Omg, I’m reading all the missing in Humboldt and the surrounding area; Where is the FBI? This list goes on and on and why isn’t their more news coverage. This is why I watch Crime watch daily, they just don’t report high profile cases. They give a voice for the low proflie cases all over.

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