In 1989, 18-year-old Mandy Stavik vanished while taking her dog for a run in her rural hometown of Clipper, Washington. Three days later, her body was found in the Nooksack River.
Tonight, “20/20” will investigate Mandy Stavik’s death, zeroing in on the decades-long search for her killer. It wasn’t until nearly thirty years after Mandy’s body was found that Timothy Forrest Bass was tried and found guilty for her murder.
Tonight’s segment will feature interviews with Mandy’s mother, Mary Stavik, the former local prosecutor David McEachran, Mandy’s then-boyfriend, Rick Zender and lead detective Kevin Bowhay.
What do we know about Timothy Forrest Bass? Read on.
1. He Refused DNA Testing When He Was First Contacted by Investigators
When he was first contacted by investigators in 2013, and then again in 2015, Bass refused voluntary DNA testing.
In 2017, a coworker of Bass’s named Kim Wagner supplied the police with a drinking cup and a pop can that Bass had drunk from. According to the Lynden Tribune, “Lab testing returned a match on Bass to the semen of 1989 to a statistical probability of 1 in 11 quadrillion — more than a million times the Earth’s population — and he was arrested and charged with first-degree murder.”
Inside Edition notes that Wagner was a mother and “emphasized with a mother’s anguish over losing a child.” Her bosses refused to help the authorities, but she believed it was the right thing to do.
On December 12, 2017, Bass was arrested and charged with rape and first-degree murder.
2. He Will Spend Nearly Three Decades in Prison
Shortly after Mandy’s body was found, Bass married and moved away.
Now, he will spend almost three decades in prison for kidnapping, murdering, and raping Mandy Stavik nearly 30 years ago. Bass’s trial lasted three weeks in Whatcom County Superior Court. According to the Bellingham Herald, Bass was also found guilty of special verdicts for first-degree rape, attempted first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping and attempted first-degree kidnapping.
At the time of the trial, the sentencing law that governs the case declared that someone convicted of first-degree felony murder, the minimum standard range is 20 years with a maximum of nearly 27.
3. Special Prosecuting Attorney David McEachran Came out of Retirement to Handle the Case
According to the Bellingham Herald, special prosecuting attorney David McEachran came out of retirement early to handle the case.
In court, he shared, “I’ve never seen (a case) that had an impact like this one did. People felt that they didn’t have a sense of safety. It was the realization that we’re not all that safe and that there was a monster who was really living among us.”
4. Bass Told Investigators He Was Having an Affair with Mandy
According to Inside Edition, Bass initially told investigators that he was having an affair with Stavik, who was a freshman at Central Washington University at the time of her disappearance.
Mandy was extremely active and social in high school. She dabbled in varsity basketball and softball, along with clarinet and saxophone. An honor student and cheerleader, Mandy also spoke Japanese and knew sign language.
Speaking to the Associated Press in 2017, Inside Edition quotes Mandy’s teacher as saying, “She had it all going for her… She had a bright future ahead of her.”
5. The Family Has Said That the Trial Was ‘like Experiencing Stavik’s Death Twice’
Mandy’s older sister, Molly Brighton, tells the Bellingham Herald that sitting through Bass’s trial was “like experiencing Stavik’s death twice.”
She continued, “We waited 28 years and it was bittersweet. It’s like a wound that just won’t heal. It’s starting to heal and it’s got all this scar tissue — you can see it every day. And then all of a sudden, they literally rip the scar tissue off the wound and reopen it and so it’s this raw pain that we had to deal with all over again.”
“But I think now we can slowly start healing, growing.”
Be sure to tune in to tonight’s episode of ABC News’ 20/20 at 9pm ET/PT to learn more about Mandy Stavik’s case.