This blog will mainly focus on crime in and around Southwest Missouri....Winner Of Springfield Blogger's Association: ROOKIE BLOG OF THE YEAR 2009--WINNER News or Current Events Blog Of The Year 2010
Springfield, Mo.- No one likes to be dislocated due to circumstances beyond their control and Dee Dee Blancharde wasn’t any different. -
She and her daughter Gypsy, 19, moved to the “peaceful” Ozarks in 2008 after their home in Louisiana was destroyed by hurricane Katrina. Habitat for Humanity helped the mother and daughter move into a house on North Volunteer Way in northern Greene County that was specially outfitted for Gypsy, who is mentally and physically challenged and uses a wheelchair. Neighbors say Gypsy suffers from Muscular Dystrophy. -
“It’s so easy to live here and so peaceful,” Dee Dee told KY3′s Sara Foretz in an interviewwhen they took possession of their home. The mother and daughter were well loved in their neighborhood with the pair hosting regular movie nights for neighbors.
Courtesy Springfield News-Leader
Friends of the women became concerned for their well being yesterday after someone posted a bizarre message on their shared Facebook page. “That bitch is dead,” it said. Almost immediately friends began asking if the page had been hacked and what was wrong. - Then whomever had access to the duo’s Facebook page posted, “I fucken SLASHED THAT FAT PIG AND RAPED HER SWEET INNOCENT DAUGHTER…HER SCREAM WAS SOOOO FUCKEN LOUD LOL.”
Some of the mom and daughter’s friends urged others to go to the house to check on the duo’s well being….others alerted authorities. When authorities arrived at the scene, Dee Dee Blancharde’s car was in the driveway. A neighbor, concerned about the womens well being, had entered the home through an open window and told officers that no one was inside.
“Based on the suspicious circumstances and Facebook posts on Dee Dee and Gypsy’s shared profile page, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office issued an endangered person advisory, secured the perimeter of the residence and obtained a search warrant for the home,” Arnott said. The pair was last seen four days before, according to the advisory. -
Several hours later the missing persons case became a homicide investigation after Dee Dee’s body was discovered inside the home she loved. -
Around 3:30 a.m. Sheriff Jim Arnott issued a news release. “This situation has taken a very tragic turn – Ms. Blancharde was an apparent victim of foul play and her daughter, Gypsy, is still missing.” Gypsy was located around 10 a.m. in Big Bend, Wisconsin, with a male friend who is a “person of interest” in Ms. Blacharde’s death. Arnott cautioned that a person of interest is not necessarily a suspect. -
Arnott, who says Blancharde died a violent death trying to protect her special needs child, says he withheld information from reporters that the 48 year-old woman’s remains had been found in order to notify her relatives in Louisiana. - He said he believes Blancharde had been dead at least 24 hours and maybe up to 72 hours before her body was found. He would not say what investigators believe the motive was in the woman’s death. -
At a press conference, Arnott said investigators are able to “trace” posts on social media. He would not release many details about the ongoing investigation like where Blancharde’s body was found or why her remains weren’t discovered during the initial search. - David Brolo Blanchard, the neighbor who entered the house because of his concern for the women, is beating himself up because he "didn't search the house better." "It set us back 12 hours," he wrote on Facebook. A friend responded, "I am so proud to know someone so brave and willing to take action for friends. This tragedy is NOT your fault. You and Kim did all you could and tried your best." -
"We have a person of interest in custody but this person is not necessarily a suspect," stated Sheriff Arnott. "We also extend our gratitude to the WaukeshaSheriff's Department in Wisconsin for their assistance in our investigation." Officers in that jurisdiction raided the home of Charlie Goldhammer for a well being check early this morning. There they found Gypsy with Goldhammer's 25 year-old stepson.
“All I know is the SWAT team came this morning took my wife, and I out of here something with my stepson, supposedly he did something in Missouri, which we don't believe because he wouldn't hurt a fly,” Goldammer told KISN.
“There's nothing wrong with her," Goldhammer told WISN. "She's OK. She walks and talks and does everything fine,” Goldammer said. “I don't really know anything about her except him and her were talking to each other online. It's his girlfriend, and he went down there to get her and brought her back up here. That's about all I know." Goldhammer says Gypsy didn't have her wheelchair with her.
A team of detectives are en route to Wisconsin to interview Gypsy and the person of interest in custody.
"We can say with confidence that there is no lingering threat to the citizens of Greene County as it relates to this case," Arnott said in a news release. "This appears to have been a targeted crime. Our Detectives were able to use a variety of sources including social media posts, emails and phone calls to successfully locate Gypsy." - Jeff Haskins worked on the Blanchardes home when he was with Habitat for Humanity. "While I was with Habitat, I spent a lot of my time at the subdivision...Dee Dee and Gypsy brought such life to the neighborhood, and everywhere they went," he posted on a prayer page set up for the Blancharde's on Facebook. -
“It just proves happy endings are not just in fairy tales,” Gypsy told KY3 when she moved into her new home. “They are real.” When asked if Gypsy is a suspect in her mother’s death, Sheriff Arnott replied, “We’re not ruling anything out.” -
If you have any information that can help investigators in this case you’re urged to call the Greene County Sheriff’s Tip Line at 417-829-6230 or 911. -