• Lori Zimmerman
  • Sandra Volneck with a picture of her daughter, Lori

Real Name: Lorraine Zimmerman
Nicknames: Lori, Blondie
Location: Hagerstown, Maryland
Date: April 6, 1984


Details: Fifteen-year-old Lori Zimmerman was a high school student living in Hagerstown, Maryland. She vanished on April 6, 1984, after she left her aunt's house. Eight days later on April 14, her partially naked body was discovered in the forest off Reno Monument Road, twelve miles from where she was last seen. She had been beaten, suffocated, and a foreign object was lodged in her throat. Her body was covered with cardboard which had been weighed down with rocks. Police believe that she was killed elsewhere.
After the police had no details to go on, psychic Dorothy Allison was brought in to try and give her impressions on the case without any clues about the murder, not even Lori's name. Dorothy wrote down several clues about the case and then talked about them with a Maryland state police detective named Keith Wattenschaidt. Dorothy said a janitor at Lori's school should be a suspect in this case. Dorothy stated that the suspect had suicidal tendencies, the numbers "71" or "17" were related and the suspect wore glasses and sometimes a wig and beard, possibly a police officer in disguise. Dorothy went to Hagerstown, and immediately after she met with Keith, she gave him the name of a man, Chuck Bernstein or Goldstein.
Dorothy believed that on the day she was killed, Lori met with two friends at a library. She believed that the friends were brothers, possibly twins. Although she had a name of a possible suspect, due to the ongoing investigation, Unsolved Mysteries had to bleep the name out. After Dorothy left the airport, she saw an image of Lori being raped. She also stated that she saw Lori get hit in the head and was then suffocated to death. The description was identical to what had actually happened to Lori. Dorothy also knew about Lori choking on an object that was shoved in her throat; this detail was not made public by the police. As they drove down a street, Dorothy claimed that Lori had walked down that street and was picked up next to the library by an old yellow car driven by the killer.
By the end of the day, Dorothy came up with many clues in the case. However, some did not seem to be related, and others seemed to be misdirected. For example, the clue about a police officer in disguise with a wig and beard was actually about Keith. The janitor clue probably didn't pertain to the suspect, but instead was Lori's stepfather's job. Also, according to Dorothy, "Chuck Bernstein/Goldstein" is not a suspect, although he may have information on the case.
However, some clues apparently were related to the case. For example, the numbers 1 and 7, were related because Lori was buried in plot 17. Also, Dorothy mentioned the name "Cleveland" which is one street away from the crime scene. Dorothy also mentioned an old church, which was a half mile from where Lori's body was found.
When Dorothy was at the crime scene, she experienced the strongest sensation that she had felt during the entire investigation. Dorothy also felt the suspect's name (that was bleeped out) at the crime scene. She felt that Lori did not want to do what the killer wanted to do, so she screamed. The killer panicked and hit her on the head and then killed her. She also felt that her named suspect was the one who killed Lori. However, detectives ran the name through police computers and found no suspect with that name.
Overall, Dorothy came up with fifty different clues regarding the case. Despite her help, Lori's murder remains unsolved.
Suspects: Investigators believe that Lori's killer lived in Hagerstown and was known to her. However, no suspects have been identified.
According to Dorothy, the killer might have known Lori, had suicidal tendencies, dressed in a disguise and drove an old yellow car. There was a suspect who was privately named by Dorothy, but was bleeped out. She believed that this suspect was the killer. However, police could not find anyone in their database with that name.
Extra Notes: This case first aired as a part of a segment involving psychic Dorothy Allison on the May 6, 1988 episode.
Results: Unsolved. In 1999, police re-opened Lori's case. It is not known if any new leads surfaced as a result. Recently, investigators have stated that they hope new forensic techniques and DNA testing will help solve the case.
Investigators looked into the possibility that Jeffrey Eldon Miles Sr. was responsible for Lori's murder. He was convicted of killing seventeen-year-old Angie Lynn Daley, who was murdered in 1995 in Pennsylvania. In both cases, the victim was killed elsewhere and their body was moved to a different location. However, no charges were filed against Miles in Lori's case.

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