What happened to Alissa Turney? The disappearance of Alissa Turney

When Alissa Turney vanished from Paradise Valley High School, she was a junior. According to ABC, her friends and family recall her as a lively, creative girl.

Michael Turney adopted Alissa and her elder brother after he married their mother, Barbara Farner. In addition to the three kids he had from a prior relationship, Michael Turney and Farner shared a daughter named Sarah.

Farner died when Alissa was 9, and Alissa’s relationship with her stepfather grew strained, according to an episode on the case from the true-crime podcast “Crime Junkie.”

As per the reports, Michael allegedly used binoculars to spy on Alissa at work, and he had surveillance cameras throughout their home trained on Alissa.

What happened to Alissa Turney?

Although Alissa’s body has never been located, she is thought to be dead.

Alissa Turney
Michael Turney is acquitted of Stepdaughter’s Murder

Turney filed a missing persons report on May 17, 2001, but in the immediate days following Alissa’s disappearance, police did not suspect foul play, and no police investigation took place.

In 2006, self-proclaimed serial killer Thomas Albert Hymer told a prison guard that he had killed Alissa.

He had been in prison since 2003 for an unrelated murder However, when Phoenix police questioned Hymer, they ultimately determined that Albert had not had any contact with Alissa, and he admitted he might have confused her with a different victim.

The FBI reports that when police searched the Turneys’ home in 2010, they discovered 26 pipe bombs. Investigators searched for Alissa over the years, but they never succeeded in finding her.

When Sarah Turney, Alissa’s younger sister, started speaking out about the case on social media in 2019 to call for her father’s arrest because she believed he killed Alissa, the case gained new attention.

Alissa Turney
Alissa Turney

After Sarah launched the true crime podcasts “Voices for Justice” and “Disappearances,” Michael was charged in 2020 with Alissa’s murder as a result of the increased attention.

The prosecution’s case was based solely on circumstantial evidence because they lacked DNA, blood, or crime scene evidence.

Phoenix Police cold case detectives and some of Turney’s children testified against Turney, but ultimately, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Sam Myers declared that there was not enough substantial evidence to convict Turney of second-degree murder.

As per NBC, Michael was cleared of all charges in July 2023. Alissa’s case remains open and unsolved.

Sarah said on social media that she was grateful for the “Dateline” episode but was anxious to see how her sister’s story was portrayed.

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