Amy Mihaljevic was 10 years old when she disappeared from Bay Village, Ohio, on October 27, 1989, launching a massive, high-profile investigation. Several months after she vanished, her body was found in Ashland County in Northeast Ohio in a rural farm field. Authorities determined that the young girl had been stabbed to death, News 5 Cleveland reported.
For more than three decades, authorities have continued to investigate the case, combing through physical evidence, witness statements and more in an attempt to find Mihaljevic’s killer, according to the outlet. NBC’s Dateline is shedding light on the latest in the investigation in an hour-long special airing Friday, September 17.
What are the latest developments in Mihaljevic’s case today? Has her killer been caught?
The Case Is Still Unsolved But Authorities Indicated They Had Leads as Recently as 2021
Mihaljevic’s murder is still unsolved to this day although the case has remained opened as investigators continue to explore avenues of inquiry.
Some of the latest public developments in the case came in January 2019 when a woman told investigators that her ex-boyfriend could be a suspect in the kidnapping and murder, according to court documents accessed by News 5 Cleveland. The man’s identity was not shared with the public and no charges have been filed at this time, however.
According to News 5 Cleveland, an affadavit stated that the woman told investigators she lived her the man, her boyfriend at the time, less than a mile and a half from the shopping center where Mihaljevic was last seen and he had a niece in the same grade as the young girl. She told authorities her former boyfriend, who is now in his 60s, did not come home the night of the abduction which was “unlike” him. She also said he called her on the night of the disappearance and asked if she’d seen the news about the missing girl.
Investigators also stated that in 1989, the man’s appearance was “consistent with one of two major suspect composites obtained via witness interviews,” the outlet reported. Additionally, a vehicle registered to him drove near where Mihaljevic’s body was found on the same day even though the “investigation has not been able to show any reason(s) why [the man] should have been near Amy Mihaljevic’s body recovery site on 2/8/1990.”
In addition to the latest development, a statement from the Bay Village Police Department from June 2016 indicated that a case review and new forensic analysis discovered that a blanket and curtain found at the scene may have been used by Mihaljevic’s killer to wrap or transport her body. The curtain appeared to be handmade and details and photographs were shared with the public in the hopes of gaining more information.
Law enforcement told Fox8 in May 2021 that they have been taking and testing DNA samples from individuals in the past few months to help eliminate possible suspects and DNA advancements might permit some of their untested DNA to be tested.
Anyone with information about Mihaljevic’s death is asked to contact investigators at 1-877-FBI-OHIO or the Bay Village Police Department at 440-871-1234.
Mihaljevic Was Last Seen by Witnesses Speaking to a Man at a Shopping Center in Bay Village
Mihaljevic was at home by herself when she received a phone call in which she was convinced to meet someone at a nearby shopping mall to buy a gift for her mother, a statement from the Bay Village Police Department indicated. Authorities still do not know exactly what was said and who made the call but they said the young girl was seen by witnesses speaking to a man at Bay Village Square the afternoon she disappeared.
She was then seen walking through the parking lot with him but no vehicle was spotted by witnesses, police said. The suspect was described in the police statement as “a White Male, 30 to 40 years of age, 5’7” to 5’10” tall, medium build, dark hair, and possibly wearing glasses.”
Mihaljevic’s body was found months later, on February 8, 1990, in a farm field around 50 miles southwest of Bay Village, where she was abducted. According to the police statement of events, “Amy’s body was re-dressed in the same clothing that she was last known to be wearing, except for missing shoes and earrings. The partially skeletonized body exhibited stabbing wounds to the throat and blunt trauma to the rear head area.”
Authorities believed that Mihaljevic’s body was likely dumped at the scene soon after she was abducted and the location where she was killed is not known. “The boots Amy was wearing, a denim backpack she was carrying, a binder with ‘Buick, Best in Class’ written on same in her backpack, and turquoise earrings in the shape of horse heads were all missing and have never been located,” police revealed.
Mihaljevic’s father, Mark Mihaljevic, told Fox8 he is still hopeful that police will solve the case: “I have always had that in my heart, that it is going to be solved,” he said. “I think this modern technology we have right now, things are going to happen.”