Lost Bride Research Day 17!

Wednesday
I called Det. Johnson at 4 p.m. He said he left a message for the mother last night and again this morning but she has not called him back as yet. As it might be possible that Valerie Abbott never returns Detective Johnson’s call, I asked him to confirm some basic information. He confirmed the decedents name as “Shayna Swann.” She died in Kalamazoo County on March 20th of an accidental overdose of prescription drugs. She had been in a car accident several years ago and suffered a closed head injury. Her prescription meds were to deal with the fall out from the accident. This was not the first time she had accidentally overdosed.

I asked Det. Johnson if he knew where she worked or went to high school. He hesitated and said that even before this incident and other accidental overdoses, Shayna “was not unknown to them.” Det. Johnson said since this was a closed case, if I wanted a copy of the report I could just come in to their offices on Lake St. and request a copy. I’m sure I’ll need to submit a FOIA form for any reports.

I checked the Kalamazoo Public Library Local History Room records on-line. They index the Kalamazoo Gazette. I figured with a date of death I might find a notice. When I searched Shayna Swann this is what I found:

Title: Public Notice: neglect petition
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 12/12/1988 D,011:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Wow. Named in a neglect petition when she was 5 years old. That is a tough start to life.

Title: 17-year-old sought in alleged scam
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 04/17/2002 B, 004:5 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Alleged scammer turns herself in
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 04/19/2002 B, 004:5 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Girl gets five-month jail term for health-care scam
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 05/29/2002 B, 003:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Birth of a daughter
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 09/30/2002 D, 008:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

So, if a 17 year old gets a five-month jail term while pregnant, not likely that she actually finished high school. Incarcerated and pregnant . . . It’s like a bad reality show.

Title: Circuit Court Sentence
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 01/14/2003 B, 002:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Birth of a daughter
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 04/19/2004 E, 008:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Circuit Court Sentence
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 11/23/2004 B, 002:1 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Driver critical after car strikes I-94 guardrail
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 03/13/2006 A,004:3 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Wanted
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 04/30/2007 A, 006:5 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

Title: Birth of a son
LOCAL_INDX CALL NUMBER COPY MATERIAL LOCATION
1)KG 10/28/2009 B, 012:5 NEWS 1 MICROFORM TECHCENTER

I’ll go get copies of these articles from the local history room and swing by the Sheriff for a copy of the police report. Hopefully there will be a picture of her from police records or the newspaper articles. Maybe a mug shot will have to do instead of a yearbook picture.

I wonder if the local history records are up to date. They showed no mention of any notice of her death. If she had 3 kids, where are they now?

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