ARDMORE, Okla.– Molly Miller, 17 and Colt Haynes, 21, vanished three years ago this month.
Both families are desperate for answers.
“There are several people who know exactly what happened to Molly and Colt and I plead with you to help us. Just let us have peace,” said Miller’s cousin, Paula Fielder. “We didn’t start this but we will finish it. We’re not going to let go until Molly and Colt are home.”
Family members joined Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation officials at a press conference in Ardmore Friday morning.
“I don’t want to have to be wondering you know did he lay out there and starve to death? Did he die of dehydration? You know, I just want him home,” said Haynes’ sister, Monique Stewart. “We have suffered for three years, three years. We just want him home.”
OSBI officials announced they are offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the conclusion of this case; that’s in addition to the $35,000 reward the two families are already offering.
Investigators also asked for help.
“Unfortunately, virtually every lead that has come in has led us to a dead end,” said OSBI director, Stan Florence.
Miller and Haynes were passengers in a vehicle involved in a police pursuit back on July 7, 2013.
Police lost the car, but investigators say the pair made several calls the next day.
“Molly and Colt were calling several friends asking for a ride, asking for water; saying that they were lost somewhere near Oswald Road, which is where the pursuit actually ended,” said Florence.
From there, the trail goes cold.
The driver of that vehicle involved in the police chase, James Conn Nipp, was later arrested but told authorities he didn’t know where Miller and Haynes were.
The family believes otherwise.
“The last person she was with, that person knows. And in my mind, that person is the guilty party and withholding information,” said Miller’s grandfather, Alex Miller.
The families are also hoping the recent arrest of Love County sheriff, Joe Russell, might help the case.
Nipp is a cousin of Russell.
Russell was arrested last week for corruption, willful neglect of duty and maladministration.
“Multiple leads have come in since Joe’s arrest you know. I think when he’s actually behind bars and people don’t have to fear retaliation from Joe then I believe that hopefully the right person will come forward,” said Fielder.
“I think he tried to point us in different directions. But that’s his kinfolk you know. Blood’s thicker than water,” said Miller.
OSBI officials would not comment on whether they believe the sheriff hindered the investigation.
Russell has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him and was released on his own recognizance.
The multi-county grand jury is asking that Russell be immediately suspended.
Russell has a hearing scheduled for next week.