Missing Springfield Three
In 1992 Susie Streeter and Stacy McCall graduated high school. This marked a huge change in their life and they were ready to thrive. Sadly, they would never get that chance because after leaving a graduation party they were never seen again, along with Cheryl Levit.
Here is the podcast episode on this case: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/26799456
If you have never heard of this case it is basically about three missing women that are most likely all missing because of the same reason or hurt by the same perpetrator. Stacy McCall was the youngest of the three at only 18. She was described as very funny and bubbly and would hang out with the odd crowd at school but loved it! Suzie Streeter was next in age at 19. She was always outgoing, fun, and happy, and really had an impact on others at her school. Lastly, we have Suzie’s mom, Cheryl Levit at age 42. She had just gotten a divorce and in February of 1992 bought her own dream home in a safe part of Springfield, MO. She was fierce and got done what she needed to get done. All three of these women were talked to or seen in the late-night hours of Saturday, June 6, 1992, but by 8 a.m. on Sunday, June 7, 1992, they were nowhere to be found.
June 6, 1992, was graduation day for Stacy and Suzie. They had attended Kickapoo High school for the last four years and were so happy to finally have graduated. Suzie wanted to follow in her mother's footsteps and become a hairdresser whereas Stacy wanted to go off to college to pursue other dreams.
After the graduation ceremony, each girl went their separate ways to have dinner with their respected families. I’m sure those dinners were full of happiness and optimistic talk for the future. However, what the girls were really waiting for were the parties that were to come that night. It was time to let go for the summer before having to really get serious about adult life.
After the dinners they met at their other friend's house, Janelle, due to one of her neighbors having the party they planned to go to. Originally the three friends and Janelle’s boyfriend were going to drive to Branson, MO after the party. There they would get a hotel and then be able to spend the day at White Water Waterpark in the city. But by 1 am no one wanted to make the drive so Stacy called her mother about the change of plans.
Right after hanging up the phone the three girls survey Janelle’s house and note that much of her out of town family was staying over. It seemed like far too many people and Stacy and Suzie didn’t feel like sleeping on the floor that night. So in a last-minute change of plans the two girls go over to Suzie’s house while Janelle stays home. Suzie had gotten a king-size waterbed as her graduation present so there would be plenty of room for the two girls on there. They would call Janelle in the morning when they woke up and then they would head off to Branson for the water park.
On Sunday, June 7, 1992, Janelle wakes up around 9 a.m., her phone has no messages from the other two girls which surprises her. But she assumes they are just waking up as well, or maybe even still asleep. So, she goes to her home phone and tries to call Suzie’s home. When there is no answer she waits a while and tries again. Now when there is no answer she starts to get worried. Calling up her boyfriend he agrees they should go check Suzie’s and Cheryl’s home. When he picks Janelle up they head over there.
As Janelle and her boyfriend start to walk up to the home things start to seem a little odder though. All over the front porch is shattered glass which looks like it came from the porchlight cover. The lightbulb is still 100% in working order but something had shattered the glass around it. They choose to knock on the door and see if anyone will come to answer, there is no answer. So, still not assuming the worst they just conclude that everyone must still be asleep.
In an effort to be nice Janelle’s boyfriend grabs a broom and they sweep up the glass and throw it away in garbage across the street. Every documentary I saw on this case or every podcast I listened to just kind of glazed over this part as if it were nothing. But I cannot help but keep getting hung up on it. Where did this broom come from? It could just have been on the side of the home but that’s not generally where people keep brooms. Why did they throw the glass away across the street? I would assume there would be some type of outdoor garbage can therefore trash day. And also why clean it up in the first place? Well everyone says these two knew how to clean Cheryl liked things and knew she would hate to see that on her front porch but it still doesn’t make 100% sense to me. Not to dig into details too much but the last confirmed sighting of the girls was when they were with Janelle; she was the last one to see them alive or at all. It just confuses me and makes me a bit suspicious.
Eventually, the couple decides to just walk in and see if anyone is home and/or asleep.
Many reports say that at this time the beds looked slept in, although it is impossible to know for sure. Other reports say that at least Cheryl’s bed looked like she had just made it or at least never slept in it. The couple was also the ones to see the rags any of the three women used the night before to get makeup off which is the main pointer to saying the girls did get home safe that night.
For a while longer, Janelle and her boyfriend wander around the home hoping to find something that leads to where one of the three women is. At this point, they are also contaminating a crime scene that could’ve led to the women’s discovery. Before the two leave the phone rings. Most reports, if not all, state that Janelle thought it was one of the three women but why would they be calling home if they were all together somewhere else? That just doesn’t make sense either. Anyways, Janelle answers and on the other end is an unknown male who is making lude sexual innuendos. Thinking it is just a prank and also disturbed Janelle hangs up, another of the same kind of call follows right after.
It wouldn’t be until 15 hours later that Janice got the number for Cheryl’s and Suzie’s home and tried to call. At that time there was no answer so she got in her car and drove over there.
When Janice got to the home no one answered so she just let herself in as well. When she moves through the home she sees all three women’s purses lined up perfectly, which would be odd anywhere. Later they would find out that Cheryl had a $900 deposit in her purse which seems to count out the idea of a robbery gone wrong. Also, she was a chain smoker and her smokes were in her purse as well which probably means she didn’t voluntarily leave. Moving to the bedroom’s Janice sees that on Cheryl’s bed is a book that looks as if it had just been set down for a quick minute and whoever left it was planning on picking it up again soon. In Suzie’s bedroom, she sees Stacy’s clothes from the night before folded on the floor. However, her underwear and t-shirt were missing. Some have theorized that maybe she had borrowed pants from Suzie but they were not the same size. So where would she have gone without pants?
After this Janice calls the police who inform her they are going to handle this case like a missing person case. By the next morning, they were asking if she would be able to get any of the women’s dental records, which made everything look very grim. If you don’t know, dental records are often how bodies are identified and this really hit Janice that there was really something wrong.
It really didn’t take long for police to get an overview of the case timeline. They knew in between 2am-8am was the time frame for something to happen. As the girls had left Janelle’s at about 2 and then people started to call the home around 8 am with no answer.
Right about this time police begin to connect another report from the early morning of June 7, 1992. A car belonging to a classmate of Suzie and Stacy reported that their car had been stolen. It was a burgundy 1987 Toyota 2-door and originally police told the public to look out for it believing it may be connected. However, the car was eventually found and seemed to have no connection to the case.
In July, a month after the three went missing another witness comes forward. She states that she was on her porch, only 2 miles away from Cheryl & Suzie’s home, between 6-7 am on June 7. While she was sitting there she saw a van that was a 1964-1970 Dodge Panel Van avocado-colored being driven by none other than Suzie. As this van drove into a driveway near her to turn around she noted that it looked as if Suzie had been crying. At this time she also heard a male voice telling Suzie to just turn around and drive if she knew what was good for her. The reason this woman waited a month to come out and say this was because she hadn’t seen the picture or Suzie until then. The police department than even purchased a van like it and put it out front with a phone number for witnesses to call.
Back in 1992 when the investigation was in full force police had quite a few suspects. First off was Bart Streeter, Suzie’s older brother, which only makes sense because he was the closest male to two of the women who were missing. It seems that Bart didn’t really get along with Cheryl. She had been in relationships with men who had drinking problems and they didn’t turn out good so she didn’t like those kinds of people around her. But Bart loved to drink and really did have a problem with it. The two would get into screaming matches over it so at 17 he moved out because he just couldn’t deal with it anymore. He lived in other places for a while but in 1991 he moved back to Springfield and got an apartment with Suzie. They thought this would help them rekindle their relationship. But one night he was drinking heavily and the two had a big falling out, so Suzie moved back in with her mother and the two cut Bart out of their lives.
Another suspect was Dustin Recla, Suzie’s new ex-boyfriend. A while back, while he was dating Suzie, he had been arrested for vandalizing a mausoleum with some friends. At first, police didn’t know who did it but then a pawn shop owner reported someone trying to sell gold tooth caps and they were found to be from the cemetery. The one who tried to sell these caps was Dustin’s close friend Michael Clay (who had also participated in the vandalism.
When the officer’s made their first visit to Clay’s home they saw from the doorway that there was somewhat of a satanic shrine on a table in the foyer. Since Clay was not home at the time they couldn’t really go in and check it out more. However, when they came back the next day it was all gone.
The nail in the coffin for Dustin and Clay was that Suzie gave police a written statement about both boys being involved in the vandalism. Court had been set for September, just a few months after she went missing. So many wonders if either of these boys were after her to shut her up. Or maybe her ex was still mad about the breakup and acted on that. Either way, these two boys were suspects.
Seemingly, the biggest break at the time came from Florida. The brother of a murdered woman in Florida had called in a tip to the Springfield Police which led them to Robert Craig Cox, who had once been named soldier of the year. The man's sister had been killed when Cox was in town years ago and her body had been found not far from the hotel that Cox had been staying in. Although there was speculation that he committed this murder DNA could not be tested due to the technology at the time, so Cox fled to California. While in California he was convicted of abducting and assaulting two women. While he was in jail for this the Zeller’s (who was the family of the murdered woman in Florida) decided to try and indict him. He was found guilty in a court of law and put on death row only to be acquitted a few years later.
While when he got out of prison in 1991 he wanted to go back to his roots which were in Springfield, MO. The police did not keep track of where he was going because they did not have that time or technology but the Zellers family did have that time. It seems he was in Springfield when the three women went missing so due to his record, he is now a suspect.
It is a theory is that it could’ve been planned. Stacy’s dad had once worked with Cox at a car dealership where she would bring her father dinner sometimes. He could’ve seen Stacy one of those times and gained a sick interest in her. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, it only takes one meeting for a killer or stalker to latch on. Many have discounted this theory since the girls were supposed to stay at Janelle’s then randomly switched their plan. However, who’s to say that Cox wasn’t following Stacy that night and just drove right behind her to Suzie’s home. But he sadly had a solid alibi.
Three years later, in 1995, Cox was again arrested in Texas for robbery. At this time his old girlfriend admits that she had told the police a story Cox had told her to, he really didn’t have an alibi for when the three women went missing. On this note, investigators traveled to Texas 3 times to interview him and see if he knew anything.
The most recent development in the case was in 2007. A journalist named Kathy Barret had picked up the case and started to investigate it. Although this podcast isn’t for me to judge people, in the Crime Watch Daily interview I became frustrated with how she agreed to do the interview and then proceeded to tell the interviewer seemingly nothing that was not known. However, she claims to know what happened in this case and who did it.
In 2007 she got a tip stating that the women were buried under the south parking garage at the hospital. Since she got this tip so many times from so many different people she decided to hire a mechanical engineer to come to do some ground-penetrating radar in the garage. This is something that detects abnormalities in soil, basically if things are buried there. Without really telling this engineer about the case he found three abnormalities under the structure that we're all similar size and relatively shallow. That is when Kathy tells him they are there looking for three bodies and explains the case.
There is a $42,000 reward for tips that lead to this case being solved. If you have any new information on this case please call 1(417)869-TIPS.
If you want to hear more details on this case check out the podcast episode here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/26799456