As people try to piece together what happened to Mollie Tibbetts, the missing Iowa college student, one clue is particularly ominous: She left her glasses and contact lenses behind, reports contend.
This is a critical clue that is dissected on platforms like Reddit because those who need such items to see can’t imagine a scenario in which Mollie would purposely leave both behind. That points to the possibility that she was abducted from her home.
Is it true, though? Did Mollie Tibbetts leave her glasses behind? Tibbetts vanished on July 18, 2018 from Brooklyn, Iowa, and she hasn’t been seen since. A reward fund for information leading to her whereabouts now tops $260,000, and the FBI has joined in the search. Tibbetts was dog sitting at a home by herself on the night she was last seen jogging in rural Iowa.
However, the clue about the glasses and contacts indicates it’s possible that Mollie disappeared after the jog. A Snapchat that she sent to her boyfriend later that night and reports that she may have also done some homework on the evening of July 18, 2018 also point in that direction.
Her father, Robert Tibbetts, said on August 6, 2018 that he thinks Mollie is alive and with someone she knows. “It’s totally speculation on my part, but I think Mollie is with someone that she knows, that is in over their head,” Robert said, according to Fox News. “That there was some kind of misunderstanding about the nature of their relationship and at this point they don’t know how to get out from under this.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Reports Say Mollie’s Glasses, Contact Lenses & Identification Were Found in the Home
Mollie’s phone and Fitbit, which authorities are trying to access, were missing from her home, according to The San Jose Mercury News.
According to The San Jose Mercury News, Mollie’s “phone and the Fitbit were not in the home, but her wallet, identification, laptop, glasses and contact lenses were. The dogs were in the basement, where they were kept when nobody was home.”
Authorities obviously know more about the timeline of Mollie’s disappearance than they have released.
Cynthia Brodie-Jack, the mother of Mollie’s boyfriend, Dalton Jack, wrote on Facebook that Mollie can not see without the glasses or contacts. “This is Mollie Tibbetts, she is my son’s long time girlfriend. She disappeared from Brooklyn, Iowa on Weds night 7/18 or early Thurs morning 7/19. She only has her phone (which is off or dead) and her fitbit with her. All of her identification and wallet is at my sons house. Along with both her glasses and contacts, she cannot see without them,” she wrote.
One Reddit user pointed out that a lot is still not known because authorities have not spoken out about this or other evidence, writing, “She did not have her glasses or contacts, though we have no confirmation she didn’t have multiple pairs of contacts.”
Dalton Jack says he opened a Snapchat post from Mollie around 10 p.m. on July 18, 2018 which he thinks showed she was inside.
Brodie-Jack also wrote: “She was staying at his place that he shares with my other son & my other son’s fiance to take care of their dogs while everyone was out of town for work. She is home for summer break from college. The last contact anyone has had with her was a Snapchat photo she sent to my son at around 10pm on Weds night. Her brother had her car (as they share it) and she did not respond to the text message he sent to her on Thurs morning asking if she needed it for work. She did not show up for work on Thurs. She is the most beautiful, kind, sweet woman and we all miss her and want her back home.”
A Neighbor Reports Seeking a Mysterious Black SUV in the Neighborhood
Another possible clue has emerged in the disappearance of college student Mollie Tibbetts: A neighbor says she saw a mysterious black SUV in Mollie’s neighborhood the night that Tibbetts was last seen.
The neighbor, who was not named, revealed the detail to Fox News on August 5, 2018 as efforts to find Tibbetts continued in full force in Brooklyn, Iowa, and the surrounding area. The report of the SUV comes after authorities said a female body they found in Lee County, Iowa, was not Mollie Tibbetts.
Fox News reported that the neighbor says a “black SUV was seen circling the Iowa neighborhood where Mollie Tibbetts was staying.” The neighbor lives only a block away from the home where Tibbetts was dog sitting alone, according to Fox, which alleged the SUV “went very slowly around the neighborhood.” The neighbor reported the account to authorities, Fox reported, and said she spotted the SUV between 11 p.m. and 1:30 a.m. on the night in question.
Other Possible Clues Have Emerged in the Disappearance
Other possible clues have also emerged, although authorities have revealed very little about any evidence they might have. A red shirt was previously found by a person mowing a lawn in rural Iowa, and it’s being investigated for a possible connection to missing Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts, Fox News also reported.
Authorities have not confirmed the account, however, and it’s not clear whether the shirt was Mollie’s. That possible clue in the case was revealed on August 3, 2018.
According to The Washington Post, “Authorities said Tibbetts may have been wearing denim shorts and a red T-shirt when she disappeared.”
A person mowing the lawn near the Lincoln Wildfire Reserve found a red shirt, Fox News reported. Although it’s not clear whether the shirt belonged to Mollie Tibbetts, according to Fox News, employees at the daycare center where she worked wear red shirts.
Previous reports indicated Mollie’s red work shirt might have been missing, leading some to theorize she was taken in the morning not at night. However, Kevin Winkler of the Iowa Department of Public Safety, said at a press conference that he was unable to confirm any items of Mollie’s had been found and her mother told UK Daily Mail that she found two of Mollie’s red work shirts in her house but is not sure if there ever was a third.
“Her last known article of clothing is believed to be dark colored running shorts, a pink sports top and running shoes (color unknown),” the Iowa Department of Public Safety said in a news release.
According to Who Radio, authorities have taken a general stance of declining to release any evidence they might have, with Winkler saying, “We recognize that it’s frustrating for everyone involved, but we believe it gives us the best opportunity to resolve this investigation.” The radio station said Winkler simply wouldn’t confirm or deny the report about the red shirt.
The shirt was found near a pig farm authorities had already searched, and they reignited the search in the area around the farm after the shirt’s discovery, Fox reported.
A Local Pig Farmer, Wayne Cheney, Has Been Questioned by Authorities
Wayne Cheney, an Iowa man with a history of stalking and harassment arrests, has told the news media that authorities interviewed him about missing college student Mollie Tibbetts. News reports indicated he may have been interviewed more than once.
Cheney lives in walking distance of pig farms searched by authorities in the disappearance of Tibbetts.
Cheney told WHO-TV that he was questioned for two hours and didn’t remember what he was asked.
“I just thought it was a waste of time but oh well,” he told the television station, adding, “I don’t know who those two were but they took me down to the fire station Tuesday and questioned me for two hours. I don`t remember what they asked me.”
According to Crime Online, Cheney denied knowing Mollie or having anything to do with her disappearance.
Authorities have not called Wayne Cheney a suspect. However, his past criminal history may have helped draw their attention to him.
According to WHO-TV’s exclusive by reporter Justin Surrency, Cheney pleaded guilty in two previous stalking cases. The cases were from 2009 and 2014 and span two counties – Poweshiek and Marion, the television station reported.
One of those cases resulted in a protective order being filed against Cheney, Crime Online reported.
Cheney lives in Deep River, Iowa. He has declined to take a polygraph, Fox News also reported.
You can read more about Wayne Cheney below, including his previous criminal history: