Unsolved Mysteries Wiki

Real Name: Unrevealed
Aliases: None known
Wanted For: Murder
Missing Since: May 7, 1992


Details: Interstate 70 runs from Baltimore, Maryland, to Cove Fort, Utah. Since April 1992, it has lent its name to a serial killer known as the "I-70 Killer," who has committed a string of murders within a few miles of it in several Midwestern states.
Twenty-six-year-old Robin Fuldauer of Indianapolis, Indiana, was the Salutatorian of Lawrence Central High School and a 1988 graduate of Indiana University. She wanted more than anything to marry and start a family. On April 8, 1992, she was working alone at the Payless ShoeSource store at 7325 Pendleton Pike in Indianapolis. The store was less than a quarter mile from Interstate 465, which intersects with Interstate 70. She was not supposed to work that day, but a coworker had called in sick. That afternoon, an employee at the store across the street noticed a strange man loitering around his building. The man sat on the curb for about a half hour, rifling through his bag and staring at the Payless store. He was later seen trying to hitch a ride back to Interstate 465.
Around that same time, the Payless store owner began calling Robin; she did not answer. At around 2pm, the owner called the gas station next door. The gas station worker, a friend of Robin's, went to the Payless store to check on her. She noticed the register was open, but no one was around. She called the police. At 2:20pm, the police arrived and found Robin dead in the store's back office. She had been shot twice in the back of the head. There were no signs of a struggle. About $90 had been taken from the cash register. The back door was open, leading authorities to believe that the killer escaped through there.
Twenty-three-year-old Patricia Smith and thirty-two-year-old Patricia Magers were both happily married. They worked side by side at "La' Bride d'Elegance", a bridal shop in Wichita, Kansas. The shop was located two miles from Interstate 35. Magers and her husband, Mark, had bought the shop a year earlier. Smith studied nursing at Wichita State University, planning to work in pediatrics. At around 6:30pm on April 11, just three days after Robin was murdered, both women were taken at gunpoint to the back storeroom of the shop, where they were each shot once in the back of the head. Magers died instantly; Smith died a few hours later. They were discovered by police at 7:30pm. The front door was open, and the key was in the lock. A small amount of money was taken from the register. Some of their personal belongings were also stolen.
Twenty-four-year-old Nancy Kitzmiller of St. Charles, Missouri, graduated from Oklahoma State University with a degree in geography. She loved playing soccer, line dancing, western gear, and country music. She had just recently qualified to join a government mapmaking team and was awaiting assignment. In the meantime, she worked as a manager at Boot Village, a Western footwear store in Bogey Hills shopping plaza on Zumbehl Road. It was only yards away from Interstate 70. At noon on May 3, she opened up the store. She was supposed to be off that day; however, she agreed to come in so that a coworker could have the day off. That afternoon, she was working alone; the stores on both sides of her were closed.
At 2:30pm, customers found Nancy's body in the back office; she had been shot in the back of the head. Some money was taken from the cash register. Although no one heard the shot, a witness did see her with her last customer (and suspected killer) just minutes before her death. The witness helped police create a composite drawing.
Four murders in three different states, separated by more than 1,200 miles. At first glance, they seemed to be random killings. Yet each took place at a shopping mall, just off Interstate 70 or a connecting highway. Indeed, there was a pattern after all.
Raytown, Missouri - another link in the deadly chain. On May 7, four days after Nancy's murder, thirty-seven-year-old Sarah Blessing, an herbalist and reflexologist with two stepsons, was working alone in a boutique called "The Store of Many Colors" at the Woodson Village Shopping Center. The shopping center was near an access road to Interstate 70. She had earned a communications degree from Emporia State College and had recently opened the boutique with several friends. On that day, she opened the store around noon. At 6:15pm, a local auctioneer noticed a stranger walking into his auction house. The man was wearing a gray sport coat, slacks, and dress shoes. He was heard mumbling to himself. He looked around briefly, then walked out again.
Tim Hickman, who owned a video store next to the shop where Sarah worked, took notice as the stranger crossed the parking lot and passed by his store. At one point, the man stopped and looked directly at Tim. Minutes later, at around 6:30pm, Tim heard a loud pop that sounded like a gunshot. He reached his front door just as the man was exiting Sarah's store and disappearing around the corner. Right away, it registered with Tim that this was the man he had just seen in front of his store. A grocery clerk collecting shopping carts also noticed the man. She watched as he climbed the embankment to Woodson Road, an Interstate 70 access road. Another witness saw him walking down a nearby street at 6:45pm.
Meanwhile, Tim grabbed a portable phone and went next door to the gift shop. He first looked through the door but could not see anything. As he went inside, he called out "Ma’am, ma’am," but received no response. As he continued to walk through the shop, he saw Sarah’s legs sticking out of the back room. She had been shot in the head and was laying lifeless in a pool of blood. He immediately called the police.
In no time, Sarah's murder was connected to the earlier shopping mall killings. A multistate task force was formed. Police discovered that sketches of the killer based on eyewitnesses in Indianapolis and St. Charles were "remarkably similar." Ballistics tests completed by the FBI confirmed that all five women had been killed with the same gun, most likely a semi-automatic .22-caliber pistol. That gun was also linked to the murder of another victim, this one a man.
Forty-year-old Michael "Mick" McCown of Terre Haute, Indiana, was a bass player who had previously toured the country. In 1987, he bought "Sylvia's Ceramics", a shopping mall ceramics store at 2615 South 3rd Street near Interstate 70, from his mother. On the morning of April 27, 1992, he had a doctor's appointment. He considered taking the day off work, but decided to go in. That afternoon, while stocking shelves in the store, he was shot twice in the back of the head and killed. His body was found by a customer at 4:15pm. His wallet was also stolen; however, other money in his pocket and in the register was left untouched. Police believe that the killer may have mistaken Mick for a woman, as he wore an earring and had his long hair in a ponytail. His murder took place just two weeks after the Wichita ones, and just six days before Nancy's. There were now six victims.
The most promising lead came from Wichita. The bridal shop normally closed at 6pm; however, on that day, a customer called, saying that he had forgotten the cummerbund for his tuxedo. Smith and Magers agreed to stay open late so that he could come pick it up. At around 6:30pm, the killer arrived; one of the women let him in, apparently believing he was the customer. Police believe the killer had chosen the shop there because he thought only a single female clerk was in the store. He was probably surprised to find two women on duty. Moments after the women were taken into the back room and shot, the actual customer arrived. He had no idea what had just happened inside.
Shortly after the customer entered the store, the killer emerged from the back room, gun drawn. The customer started backing towards the front door, saying that he did not know "what's going on here." The killer asked him to come into the back room with him. However, in fear, he continued backing up towards the front door, saying that he could not come with him. He told him that he just wanted to leave, saying "I didn’t see nothing, I don’t know nothing that’s going on here." Inexplicably, the killer, after telling the customer not to go to the police, let him go free.
About an hour later at 7:30pm, the customer called the police. Using his description, as well as those of the Raytown eyewitnesses, a police artist came up with a composite drawing of the I-70 Killer (shown above). Authorities have searched hotel registrations from every hotel along Interstate 70. They have checked tool booths, license plates, and traffic stops. All of this information has been compiled into a large computer database. However, they have been unable to identify the killer. Detective Rich Plummer of the St. Charles Police Department says that it is important to know that a serial killer never stops; they may stop for a period of time, but they never stop completely. He says they will always start up again. He says that police want to find the killer before there are six more victims.
Suspect: The I-70 Killer is a White male between 5'5" and 6'0" (most likely 5'7" to 5'9"); he has a slender to medium build, weighs between 140 to 180 pounds and was thought to be in his late twenties or thirties (in 1994). He has short, tinted, reddish or sandy (or possibly strawberry blond) hair, beard stubble, thin lips, a high forehead, and what witnesses describe as "lazy" or "droopy" eyelids. According to each of the witnesses, he was neatly dressed and clean-cut. In the Wichita case, he was seen wearing a brown waist-to-thigh-length jacket, dark slacks, and black shoes. He appeared to be almost in a trance, as if he were thinking of something else. He may be "comfortable" with the Indianapolis area. He may have lived in an area along Interstate 70. He might be a collector of antique or unique firearms.
Although the killer took small amounts of money from each of the victims, robbery is not believed to be his motive. The stores he targeted were generally not the type that would have large amounts of cash on hand. In at least one case, the victim's purse was untouched. None of the victims were sexually assaulted. Some investigators believe that he committed these murders simply because he enjoys killing. They have described him as an "organized, coldblooded psychopath." They have also speculated that he is a "thrill killer."
FBI agents created a psychological profile of the killer. They believe that in the months prior to the murders, he fantasized about killing. He "savored the sense" of being superior to his victims because he was able to end their lives. He also enjoyed being able to elude the authorities. They also suggested he may have chosen a specific type of victim based on a person who had "wronged" him earlier in life (such as a relative or former girlfriend).
Police believe that the killer stalked at least some of his victims, watching them as they worked and "casing" the area. He primarily targeted young, petite, brunette women working alone in small stores located in strip shopping malls along Interstate 70 or Interstate 35. All of the stores were close to the interstates, with some being just a block from an off-ramp. All of the victims were shot point blank at least once in the temple and/or back of the head, execution style. All of the victims (except Mick) were shot in the back rooms of the stores. All of the shootings occurred in the afternoon.
Police believe the killer may be a traveling salesman, hitchhiker, or truck driver, based on his ability to quickly travel from each crime scene. He may have connections to the military, as several of the murders have taken place near military bases. It was also speculated that the killer was suffering from PTSD after being in the military.
Jeff Meyrose, who worked across the street from Robin, reported seeing a strange man in the area shortly before her murder. The man was wearing a green jacket and carrying a three-feet long bag. He looked like he had been sleeping in his clothes. Jeff assumed he was a hitchhiker; he came from the direction of Interstate 465, which intersects with Interstate 70. The man stopped in front of Jeff's store, then circled the building repeatedly before sitting on a nearby curb for about a half hour.
While sitting there, the man stared at the Payless store and rifled through his bag. He also talked to himself and was "giggling." He was not nervous and did not seem to be in a hurry. Jeff believes that the man was either on drugs or had mental problems. At around 2pm, the man left the curb. A few minutes later, Jeff witnessed him calmly trying to hitch a ride going north, back toward Interstate 465. Robin was found dead less than an hour later.
Suspected serial killer Herb Baumeister from Westfield, Indiana, was considered a suspect in the I-70 Killer case. He physically resembled the killer (lazy eyelids, reddish hair, similar build). However, he was never questioned in this case; in July 1996, he fled to Canada and committed suicide after several sets of skeletal remains were discovered on his Westfield estate. The bones belonged to eleven men, eight of whom have been identified. All were believed to have been picked up by Baumeister in gay bars during the early 1990s. He is also suspected of dumping several victims along Interstate 70. However, the fact that all of his victims were men, and nearly all of the I-70 Killer's victims were women, leads police to believe he was not involved in the latter cases.
Donald Waterhouse was also considered a suspect in the case. On February 29, 1992, one month before the murders began, he shot and killed his mother and stepfather in their Dyersburg, Tennessee home. Like the I-70 victims, they were shot in the head with a .22-caliber weapon. Waterhouse vanished; his truck was later found abandoned near Interstate 70 in East St. Louis, Illinois. In October, a few months after the murders stopped, he was arrested in Oklahoma. Along with being at large during the murder spree, he also fit the physical description of the killer and resembled the composite. However, he was later ruled out as a suspect.
Extra Notes:

  • This case first aired on the May 4, 1994 episode.
  • It was also profiled on America's Most Wanted and Dark Minds.
  • It is not to be confused with I-65 Killer or I-70 Strangler.
  • Some sources state that Sarah was shot at 6:15pm, that the auctioneer saw the killer at 6pm, and that Mick was killed at 4:30pm.

Results: Wanted. After Unsolved Mysteries filmed this story, the killer apparently struck again. On November 1, 1993, twenty-two-year-old Amy Vess was working alone at Dancer's Closet, a dancewear shop in Arlington, Texas. The shop was located just off of Interstate 35. Although she had the day off, she agreed to come in. That afternoon, a man entered the store and shot her twice in the head. After he left, she was able to crawl to the phone and call 911. She was barely able to speak because of her injuries; 911 operators were unable to understand her.
Once paramedics arrived, Amy was able to let them know that she had been robbed and shot by an unidentified man. She was rushed to the hospital; sadly, she died the next day. Only a small amount of money was missing from the shop. Although a different gun was used in this murder (also a .22), the MO was so similar that police were virtually sure it was the same killer. Soon after, police linked the killer to another murder and an attempted murder along Interstate 35 and 45 in Texas.
Fifty-one-year-old Mary Ann Glasscock ran a store called Emporium Antiques Etc. at 4708 Bryce Avenue in Fort Worth. The store was in a strip mall area, about six blocks from Interstate 35. On September 25, 1993, a year after Sarah's murder (and a month before Amy's), Mary Ann was killed while she worked alone in the store. A friend came to visit that afternoon and found her body on the floor between the kitchen and another back room; she had been shot once in the back of the head, execution style. Only a small amount of money was missing.
Thirty-five-year-old Vicki Webb owned the "Alternate Gift Shop", a small store in the Rice Village shopping district in Houston. It was located less than a mile south of Interstate 69, which intersects with Interstate 45. At 10am on January 15, 1994, she opened her store; she was working alone. Shortly after opening, a man entered. The two talked for about twenty minutes; they discussed merchandise, business patterns, and customer traffic. When another customer entered, the man left, promising to come back. When the other customer left, the man returned. He told her that he was supposed to meet his niece there and said that she would like the store. He repeatedly looked out the window; Vicki assumed that he was looking for his niece. He also walked around the store, looking at different items.
A few minutes later, the man asked to see a copper frame. Vicki came out from behind her counter, picked up the frame, and turned to go back behind the counter. As she turned, he shot her in the head. She fell to the floor, conscious but not moving. The man jumped over her and went through the cash register, taking about $100. He also went into a back room of the store. She played dead, hoping he would leave. He did, only to return shortly afterwards. He rolled her over, dragged her behind the counter, and pulled her pants down. He put the gun to her forehead; however, it jammed and he laughed. After hearing sounds next door, he left. About fifteen minutes later, a couple entered the store. They found Vicki and called for help.
Vicki was paralyzed from the neck down and was having trouble breathing. She was rushed to the hospital; the bullet had lodged between the second and third vertebrae at the bottom of her head. Miraculously, she was saved by an anatomical fluke she did not know she had: an abnormally large spinal column. After three months of rehabilitation and surgeries, she was able to walk again. She described her assailant as in his mid-thirties, about 5'8", thin (almost gaunt), and tan, with a "weathered" look. Based on his appearance, she believed he "worked somewhere outside." He had long, shaggy blonde hair. He was wearing a beige, old time cardigan sweater and brown cowboy roper boots. He walked bow-legged. She thought he looked "like a jockey." When she was shown a sketch of the I-70 Killer, she saw a likeness to the man who shot her.
Authorities have yet to determine whether or not the Texas shootings were committed by the I-70 Killer. No physical evidence links the crimes. Texas authorities do not believe they are related. Authorities investigating the I-70 cases, on the other hand, believe they are linked. They note that, like in the I-70 cases, all of the Texas victims were clerks shot in the head. Overall, there were many similarities between the two sets of crimes. They also suspect that the killer may have switched to a different weapon due to the publicity surrounding the case.
Authorities have continued to investigate the case over the years. Hairs and fibers, among other evidence, have been analyzed by the FBI using new technology. In May 2012, the St. Charles Police Department released information about the gun used in the I-70 murders. It was most likely an Erma Werke ET22, an antique German handgun. However, an Intratec Tec22 (also known as a Scorpion) has not been ruled out. The ammunition was CCI brand .22-caliber long rifle with copper-clad lead bullets. The bullet casings had been rubbed with corundum and jeweler's rouge. Jeweler's rouge is used to polish the feed ramp on a semi-automatic weapon so that the bullet will slide easily into the chamber. It is also possible that the killer lived or worked somewhere where grinding or polishing was performed.
In October 2021, the St. Charles Police Department released age-progressed composites of the killer (shown above). Around that same time, Terre Haute police announced that they were looking at the killer as a suspect in the murder of Billy Brossman. At around 6:30pm on November 30, 2001, a man entered the 7th & 70 Liquor Store on Prairieton Road in Terre Haute and shot Billy to death. A security camera video showed that the killer entered the store, grabbed some beer, and then approached the counter. Once there, he pulled out a gun; Billy gave him the cash register, which he took some money from. He forced Billy into the back of the store, where he shot him once in the back of the head. He then ran from the store, leaving the beer and most of the money behind.
Interestingly, the store was located close to Interstate 70. It was also located less than a mile from Sylvia's Ceramics, where Mick was killed. Police noticed several similarities between Billy's murder and the others. They also noted that his killer resembled the composite sketch of the I-70 Killer. Police believe that the killer most likely lived and worked in the Terre Haute area around the time of the murder.
Tips led Terre Haute police to a suspect in Billy's case. Several people who knew the suspect said that he matched the man in the video. The suspect was questioned by police; he said he worked for a large department store and traveled the country doing remodeling jobs for them. He also said he had been in Terre Haute in 2001, when Billy's murder took place. However, authorities felt that they did not have enough evidence to connect him to Billy's murder or the I-70 cases. Also, they have yet to confirm that his murder is connected to the others. His killer is described as a White male, about 5'8" to 6'0" tall, with a medium build and thinning hair. He may have been wearing a wedding ring.
In November 2021, authorities from Indianapolis, Wichita, Terre Haute, St. Charles, and Raytown met together in St. Charles to review the cases. Federal authorities were also involved in the meeting. In February 2022, all of the agencies involved in the investigation sent away pieces of evidence for DNA testing. In Mick's case, they sent the pants he was wearing when he was killed; it is believed that the killer touched his pants pocket when he grabbed his wallet. In the Magers/Smith case, they sent a wedding veil, which the killer apparently used to hold his gun.
Today, the killer would most likely be in his fifties or sixties. His hair may now be gray. A $25,000 reward is being offered in this case.
Sadly, several relatives of the victims have passed away without seeing the case solved, including: Sarah's husband, Sonny; Patricia Smith's father, Bob Trendal; and both of Mick's parents.