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How does a woman vanish from a busy Nevada casino?
Al Henderson and Jean Moore seemed like the typical couple in love. But they spent more than a typical amount of time getting to know each other. According to Al, it took him 20 years to finally propose to Jean:
However, Jean’s daughter, Connie Christie, wasn’t nearly as happy about the engagement:
Jean’s son, Joe Hamilton, said he even tried to get his mother to end the relationship:
On April 6, 1992 , a few months after the proposal, Jean and Al left Apple Valley, California, for a vacation in Laughlin, Nevada — a scaled down version of Las Vegas. A few days later, Al reported Jean missing. No one has seen or heard from her since.
According to Al, it was April 9, the morning they were going to check out of their hotel, when Jean said she wanted to play her lucky slot machine one last time. Al said that he dropped her off at a side entrance of a nearby casino, then went to find a parking place:
According to Al, he told the valet he was going to give Jean the ticket and that she would pick up the car later. Al said he went inside the casino, found Jean, and gave her the ticket:
Al claims he left Jean in the casino at around 9:30 in the morning. Once outside, he planned to take a taxi back to the hotel:
But Al said he found somebody else playing Jean’s favorite slot machine:
When Jean didn’t show up, Al said he checked out of their hotel around noon and returned to the casino to look for her:
Al says he thoroughly searched the lobby, the shops, and the gaming area, but he could not find Jean. Over the next few days, he distributed thousands of flyers in the Laughlin area. Despite a $25,000 reward, no one called. Al said he began to think that Jean must have met with foul play:
Jean’s children thought the same thing. Connie said she’s convinced that Al Henderson knows more than he’s telling:
Jean’s son, Joe, has claimed that Al’s story kept changing:
Al originally told police that he dropped Jean off in front of the casino and gave her the valet ticket there. But during his interview with Unsolved Mysteries, Al said that he left Jean at a side entrance and gave her the ticket inside the casino.
Police knew surveillance cameras monitored every square inch of the casino 24 hours a day. It was time to verify Al Henderson’s story. Al had said that a valet parked his Cadillac and that he entered the casino a little after 9:00. Surveillance tapes confirmed this. Beyond this point, Henderson’s story and the surveillance footage don’t match up.
One tape shows two views of the area where he says he gave Jean the valet ticket and where they supposedly walked around. Det. Thomas Ball with the Las Vegas Municipal Police Department, Laughlin Substation, scrutinized the tapes:
Al offered no explanation:
Al also said he had played Jean’s favorite slot machine while he waited for her. According to Det. Ball:
Al insisted that he was at the machine during the stated time:
Det. Ball said he’s sure he viewed the correct tape:
Investigators began to wonder if Jean had been in Laughlin at all. According to Det. Ball, eventually the police found a waitress who had served Al and Jean on the day they arrived:
So where was Jean Moore between the Monday sighting and Thursday, when she supposedly disappeared? A few weeks later, a witness came forward with a possible answer. A friend of Jean’s claimed she saw the couple 150 miles away from Laughlin. They were at a gas station in their hometown of Apple Valley, the day before Jean was reported missing. Det. Ball spoke to the witness:
Al claimed there are phone records to prove that both he and Jean were in Laughlin at that date and time:
Phone records verify that calls were made from Laughlin on April 8. Also, Al’s bookkeeper, Geraldine Fender, said both Al and Jean called her from Laughlin that same Wednesday evening:
Jean Moore was reported missing less than 24 hours later.
Through it all, Al Henderson has been adamant that he wants nothing more than to see his fiancé again:
Jean Moore’s disappearance has no explanation. How could a woman simply vanish from a crowded casino in broad daylight?
The family says they won’t stop searching until they find the answer.