Kelsie Schelling was 21 years old and eight weeks pregnant when she disappeared on February 4, 2013, in Pueblo, south of Denver, Colorado. She had just discovered that she was pregnant with her boyfriend Donthe Lucas’ child and had driven down from Denver to Pueblo after he said he had a “surprise” for her. Her car was found a few days later at St. Mary-Corwin Hospital in Pueblo and surveillance video showed Lucas moving the car to that location.
After several years of speculation that Lucas was involved in Schelling’s disappearance, he was arrested in November 2017 and charged with first-degree murder, the Denver Channel reported. In August 2018, he pleaded not guilty and denied being involved. Several delays meant that Lucas’ trial wouldn’t begin until years later, on February 3, 2021, ABC News wrote. Prosecutors said Lucas didn’t want Schelling to have his baby so he lured her to Pueblo and killed her.
Has the missing Kelsie Schelling’s body ever been found?
Schelling’s Body Has Never Been Found Despite Lucas Being Charged With 1st-Degree Murder
Schelling’s body has never been found and there is no DNA evidence of her murder either, with the only trace left behind of the young woman being her abandoned car. Video footage of Lucas showed him using her bank card and moving her vehicle in the days after her disappearance in Pueblo, the Denver Channel wrote.
Colorado Bureau of Investigation investigators said they believe Schelling was strangled to death by Lucas after he lured her to the town. Cellphone records show that Schelling had just found out she was pregnant and told her family and Donthe and also that Donthe told Schelling to “come to Pueblo when she got off of work that night because he needed to speak with her in person,” her mother said, according to Westword.
During Lucas’ trial, his defense lawyers argued that neither her body nor any DNA had ever been found and it was the “biggest stretch in Colorado history” to charge Lucas with first-degree murder, however, the jury found him guilty after less than three hours’ deliberation, the Denver Channel reported.
Authorities Have Some Ideas About Where Her Remains Could Be But Don’t Know for Certain
Investigators shared information about the possible whereabouts of Schelling’s body during Lucas’ trial, specifically the Pueblo landfill. According to ABC News, Pueblo police captain Eric Bravo said, “We received the information from the Pueblo landfill that there was some video evidence of a vehicle being there. You couldn’t see what kind of vehicle, you couldn’t tell who was in the car. Their lock to their front gate into the dump had been tampered with.”
Authorities also said that Lucas’ cellphone data from that night shows he may have been at the landfill but they said it’s not feasible to conduct a search of the landfill for her remains. Schelling’s family said more should be done to try to find her body at the landfill.
Her mother said Schelling’s body not being recovered from the landfill is “just the worst possibility to me, because he discarded her like garbage. I mean, who wants that for their child to be the final resting place? No one.” Her brother added, “We wanna bring her home with us, her and Cadry both. Cadry — that was the name she was going to give the child.”