Sunday, July 22, 2007

Amanda Jones' parents keep hoping

Amanda Jones' parents keep hoping
By Robert Patrick

HILLSBORO — When you're the parent of a missing person, you never give up wondering, hoping or trying to find some clue that would help.

On Saturday, police and the relatives and friends of Amanda Jones, who disappeared almost two years ago, were doing their own hoping — hoping that someone had seen something that would break open the case.

"We just need that one last bit of information," said Lt. Tommy Wright, stretching out his hand as if he were grabbing for something just out of reach.

On Aug. 14, 2005, Jones was 26 and just days away from giving birth to the son she planned to name Hayden Lucas, when she disappeared. Jones had told her mother that she was going to the Hillsboro Civic Center to meet the man she believed to be the baby's father, Bryan Lee Westfall.

On Saturday, Jones' parents, Hubert and Bertha Propst, were handing out "missing" fliers inside the main entrance to the Jefferson County Fair at the civic center, just steps away from where her car was found unlocked and with her purse inside.

Investigators and family members are hoping that someone who saw something the day Jones disappeared will see their fliers or one of two large banners funded by Eagle Bank, where Jones used to work.

Wright said that thousands would be reminded about Jones or see the plea for information for the first time. Wright said 6,000 had attended the fair Friday night.

"You never know," he said.

Wright said the banners would be moved around the county in hopes of catching the right eye.

It's the latest bid to get Jones back in the public eye.

In the spring, it was a "Finding Amanda Jones" page on the website.

There's still a $100,000 reward, and anyone with information is asked to call the Jefferson County sheriff's office at 636-797-5515.

Wright, chief of detectives for the Jefferson County sheriff's office, won't comment on a particular suspect. "We've looked at a person," is all he would say. But Wright said that the person had hired a lawyer and had declined to take a lie detector or voice stress analysis test.

The response to the Propsts on Saturday was mixed.

"Oh, she's still missing?" Bertha Propst said one fairgoer had asked.

Another said he'd seen her in a mall a few weeks ago, before saying he wasn't certain.

Wright said he would check that potential sighting out, just as investigators have checked out about 500 leads in the case.

Hubert Propst was tough to ignore, hitting passers-by with the question, "Will you help me find my daughter, please?"

He got a hug, a "God bless you" and nods. | 314-621-5154

St Louis Post Dispatch

Google Bryan Lee Westfall


Missouri Lawmakers: When will we make some changes for the sake of justice? Why are the hands of Law Enforcement tied in these cases. Criminals have more rights in Missouri than the victims and the victim's families. If changes aren't made, we will see more and more sad cases such as this.


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