We never expect to never see our loved ones again when they to do some simple, routine, thing like going to the store. Diana Shawcroft and Jennifer Lueth did exactly that on May 24, 1996, telling Diana’s older sister, Kristina Frigoin, that they were going to the store and would be returning in a little while. They did not take anything with them that suggested they wouldn’t be returning, such as their makeup that Kristina said they never went anywhere without taking. Diana, age 20, and Jennifer, age 19, were best friends and had moved from Colorado to stay with Diana’s sister. Diana and her sister had had a spat before they left for the mini-mart.
The mini-mart was only a few blocks away but since the girls were adults and known to be adventuresome, Kristina was not immediately alarmed. The girls were seen at the min-mart around 7 p.m. where they bought cigarettes and soda and sat outside drinking it. The girls had been there for a couple of hours when a blue truck arrived. According to witnesses, the girls talked to a man in the truck for quite a while and then got into the truck with him. That was the last time anyone saw the girls alive.
Investigators concentrated on finding the man in the blue truck (see the picture). It was believed likely that the girls knew the man previously and the girls had been to a number of parties and nightclubs where they met a lot of people in the short time they had been in Glendale. The girls were known to be naïve and Lueth’s mother believed they would have been easy targets. Young people that age believe they are bullet-proof and these young ladies were not an exception.
Nothing was heard about or from the girls until three months had passed. Two men hunting in a remote desert area 100 miles north of Phoenix found the girls in an extremely isolated area 16 miles from the nearest highway. Access was possible only by pickup truck or four-wheel drive. The girls had been murdered, their cause of death withheld by police, and Diane Lynne Shawcroft lay on top of Jennifer Sue Lueth.
The police believe that due to the very isolated and hard to reach area, the killer knew the area well. Lueth’s father also stated that Jennifer was strong and a scrapper and he did not believe that one assailant would have been able to control and kill both girls.
The families erected two wooden crosses with pictures of the girls at the site where the girls were found and only the police and the families knew exactly where this was located. Police monitored the site occasionally in case the girls’ killer decided to visit their graves. The police found evidence of that four years later on September 29, 2000. The girls’ memorial pictures were stolen from their frames. Nothing else had been disturbed and it would seem like a strange thing for anyone other than the killer to take.
The families are looking for justice for their loved ones.
Witnesses can be helpful in two ways or rather at two locations. The girls talked to the man in the blue truck for an extended time and it would be unusual for people not to notice two pretty young women in a public place for an extended time. Someone may have known the man in the truck or seen him well enough to give the police a description.
People familiar with the desert area near Phoenix might know of someone with a blue truck who visits there. We know it is likely that he has returned there to take the pictures of the girls.
These women were seen by many people and likely lots of people saw them talking to the man in question. Think back to that fateful day and ask yourself if you might have seen the girls and later learned that they had been found dead and maybe your mind wandered to seeing two girls talking to a man in a blue truck. Any time the police receive information, it provides a vital link that allows them to find the entire picture.
There was one final strange twist to this case. The families erected a shrine where the bodies were found. Pictures of both girls were placed at the foot of two wood crosses. Police decided to occasionally survey the sight, hoping to find evidence of a visit from the killer. Four years later, on September 29, 2000, they found it. Both photos of the girls had been removed from their frames. Only police and the victims’ families knew the exact location where the girl’s bodies had been found. Diane’s father:
“Nothing else seemed to be disturbed and it definitely raised questions as to who would want the pictures, who would go to that much effort to go back in as far as it is, get the pictures, and take them.
killer. Four years later, on September 29, 2000, they found it. Both photos of the girls had been removed from their frames. Only police and the victims’ families knew the exact location where the girl’s bodies had been found. Diane’s father:
“Nothing else seemed to be disturbed and it definitely raised questions as to who would want the pictures, who would go to that much effort to go back in as far as it is, get the pictures, and take them. Hard to even imagine who it would be, or why they would do it, unless it was the perpetrator.”
No evidence that might identify the murderer has ever been found. Authorities would like to question the man in the blue pick up who was the last person seen with the girls.
On the day they disappeared Diana and Jennifer were seen at the mini-mart at approximately 7:00 p.m. According to the cashier, the girls bought cigarettes and soda. But instead of going home, they lingered outside the store. The cashier later saw a man pull up in a blue truck. The girls conversed with the driver and then got into the truck. The driver of the truck drove off. That is the last time the girls were seen alive. Family members believe the girls knew the driver or they would not have left with him.
Three months later two men were hunting in a remote desert 100 miles north of Phoenix. Both Diana Shawcroft and Jennifer Lueth had been found murdered. But the location of the girl’s bodies offered several clues as to who the killer or killers might be. The area is extremely isolated some sixteen miles from the nearest highway and accessible only by pick-up truck or four-wheel drive. Authorities believe that the killer has frequented the area or has some personal knowledge of the area. Authorities also believe the killer was either very strong or there was more than one person involved in the killings.
The search for Diana and Jennifer’s killer or killers continues. Authorities would especially like to question the man who was the last person seen with the girls. He may be driving a blue pick-up truck. Please complete the form below to submit a tip online.