Unsolved Mysteries Wiki

Marvin and Sandra Maple

Real Names: Marvin Leroy and Sandra Kuykendal Maple
Aliases: Ray and Sandra Farmer
Wanted For: Abduction
Missing Since: March 1989


Details: Marvin and Sandra Maple were the grandparents of Michael, Christi and Bobby Baskin. Their daughter, Debbie, and her husband, Mark, are Michael, Christi, and Bobby's parents. In 1987, Mark decided that he wanted to go back to school to pursue his master's degree. As the Baskins planned to move from Murfreesboro, Tennessee to Louisville, Kentucky, they realized that they would face financial problems. Marvin and Sandra agreed to watch Christi and Bobby until they had settled and found jobs. Mark and Debbie moved to Louisville with Michael.
Despite the separation, the Baskins and Maples kept in touch as much as possible. Mark and Debbie planned to only have Christi and Bobby stay with Marvin and Bobby through the summer. However, it became difficult to find jobs in Louisville, so they stayed through Christmas. According to Debbie, she and Sandra got into an argument when she told her that she wanted them back. According to her, she and Marvin loved them a bit too much and believed they could be better parents for them than Mark and Debbie. By April, the feud between the Baskins and Maples had reached the point where Mark and Debbie were not allowed to stay in the Maples' home when they visited Christi and Bobby.
On April 10, 1988, Mark and Debbie stayed in a motel so that they could have all of the children together. A month later on May 5, Marvin and Sandra petitioned for custody of Christi and Bobby before Judge Robert Corlew in his chambers. They claimed that Mark and Debbie had abandoned them and were members of a Satanic cult. They also claimed that Bobby had been molested by Mark and Debbie during the motel visit. The judge gave Marvin and Sandra temporary custody of them. Mark and Debbie were shocked and claimed that the allegations against them were false.
On May 23, a court hearing was held and Christi and Bobby were again placed in Marvin and Sandra's custody. They, Mark, and Debbie were ordered to undergo complete psychological evaluations. Meanwhile, a thirty-day investigation into the abuse allegations was conducted. During this time, Marvin and Sandra's custody of Christi and Bobby was extended. However, Mark and Debbie retained custody of Michael.
As part of the investigation, Murfreesboro detective Anita Flagg was tasked to determine if Bobby's claims of being sexually abused by Mark and Debbie were true. He confirmed what Marvin and Sandra said, but she believed that he may have been coached. In further interviews, his stories allegedly became more bizarre. He allegedly claimed that social workers, attorneys, and mental health officials were involved in the rituals. At the conclusion of her investigation, she believed that charges were not warranted. She did not find evidence to support the claims of abuse.
Flagg and the other investigators recommended that Christi and Bobby be returned to Mark and Debbie. However, a court order was required to make this possible. Unfortunately, Christmas was approaching and the court dockets were full. Once again, Mark and Debbie were only allowed intermittent visits with them. A final hearing was scheduled for March 29, 1989, almost a full year after the initial proceedings began. By then, there was little doubt that they would be returned to Mark and Debbie.
Nineteen days before the hearing, court guardian Karen Hornsby called Marvin and Sandra to confirm a scheduled visitation for Christi and Bobby with Mark and Debbie. After she failed to reach them several times, she became suspicious. She went to visit them at their home, only to find that it was for sale and they had all disappeared. According to Mark and Debbie, they had gone as far as threatening to kill Christi and Bobby to keep them from their parents.
Mark and Debbie still hope to find Christi and Bobby and reunite with them and Michael.
Extra Notes: This case first aired on the February 7, 1990 episode.
Results: Captured. After the broadcast, viewers reported that Christi and Bobby were with Marvin and Sandra in Santa Clara, California. Photographs of them were taken on August 13, 1989, at a pool party there. While there, Marvin and Sandra were living under the names "Ray and Sandra Farmer". They told neighbors that they were Christi and Bobby's parents, whom they called "Robin" and "Robby". However, they all vanished before police could investigate.
Christi and Bobby were later reportedly seen in Washington, Mississippi, Florida, and Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In February 2009, Marvin was finally arrested. It was discovered that Sandra had passed away three years earlier. Christi and Bobby, who now go by Jon and Jennifer Bunting, are alive and and well-adjusted adults now, but with little emotional attachment to Mark and Debbie due to the abduction. They have refused all efforts to reunite with them. Whether this is due to some form of brainwashing by Marvin and Debbie remains to be seen.
Marvin pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation. He passed away in 2016.
Jon has since spoken out and is adamant that he and Jennifer were abused and that Marvin and Sandra took them and hid them for their own safety. He also remembers the abuse and has claimed there was no brainwashing involved at all. He did a TV interview in May 2017.