The disappearance of April Beth Pitzer is nearing its ninth year -- a cold case for almost a decade -- and her mother is just as devoted today in finding her as she was nine years ago. That's why she sought my help in profiling the young woman's case, and her devotion has led to a possible new lead. As of March 6, 2013 this is breaking news being first shared here on Examiner News. Registered sex offenders were never a focus in the investigation behind April's disappearance due to the heavy focus on two main players in this case -- who are now deceased. This revelation is stunning in that there are so many other avenues that could have been considered. What's even more disturbing is the fact that a large number of registered sex offenders are concentrated in the area where April was last seen.
April Beth Pitzer was last seen around the 30000 block of Caspian Road in Newberry Springs, California -- near Barstow. This desolate location is a rugged desert environment with primarily trailer and shack residences on dusty dirt roads. This isn't a large city, nor is it a cozy town by any standards -- and it seems as though it's a community mostly inhabited by the remnants of a mining industry that is all but obsolete in this particular region.
Her story has been featured on Investigation Discovery's "Disappeared," which can be watched here in three parts. It's a mysterious disappearance that's never been solved, and even though April was declared legally dead in recent years, no body has been found. Furthermore, police officials have also been known to state that there is no solid evidence that April was killed. In this whirlwind of details, the prominent pieces of evidence still stick out and point toward foul play regardless of what officials have said -- and that is what her mother believes. Gloria Denton has long believed that her daughter's final resting place is somewhere in the desert between Nevada and California -- possibly near the abandoned Red Dog mine, as rumors and other pieces of evidence have led her there.
After doing some research, it was apparent that more than two violent registered sex offenders have been in the area as residents where April vanished nearly a decade ago. When this information was presented to Gloria Denton, she was receptive to it. She even told me that detectives never pursued sex offenders because of the various information on Chuck Hollister and "DanDan" Dansbury. Both of these men are dead, and even though there are plenty of rumors, April still hasn't been found.
Is it possible that a registered sex offender could have gone these past nine years without even sparking a lick of suspicion in this high profile disappearance? It most certainly is, and knowing that this avenue of investigation wasn't considered makes the possibility even more possible. Gloria Denton agrees, and her devotion to the search for her missing daughter may help in garnering attention to this very interesting new detail. With the rural atmosphere of Newberry Springs, especially the block where April Pitzer lived and was last seen, it's not far fetched at all to imagine that someone acquainted with her in the area preyed upon her and then blended right back into the background presumably never to be caught. It could be theorized that even Chuck Hollister and "DanDan" Dansbury were too aware of this possibility and took it to their graves. Keep in mind that in very rural and desolate areas like this, people tend to know one another and secrets can sometimes span across entire neighborhoods.
Hopefully it's not another decade before Gloria Denton can bring her missing daughter home to be laid to rest properly. This is a heartbreaking case, but it is also a heartwarming display of a mother's tenacity in Gloria's search for answers. Here's to hoping she gets those answers with the help of anyone who is touched by this case.