A Pampa News Article in December 1999
This is an Article that ran in the Pampa News in Early August 2000
This is an Article that ran in the Amarillo Globe NewsPaper in September 2000 after the phone call.
Telephone call spurs latest search efforts for missing Pampan
By GREG CUNNINGHAM
Globe-News Staff Writer
PAMPA - A mysterious phone call to a Pampa family has opened old wounds and spurred relatives to redouble their efforts to find out what happened to Monica Lynn Appleton.
Appleton, 30, has been missing since October, but her brother, Donny Brown, said a call from an anonymous man claiming to have witnessed Appleton's murder has brought new urgency to his quest to learn his sister's fate.
"To be honest, I think she met foul play," said Brown, who is a 12-year veteran of the Pampa Police Department. "I'm 99 percent sure of that, but there's still some hope that she can be found alive."
In an effort to develop leads, Appleton's family has set up the Monica Appleton fund at the Pampa branch of the First State Bank of Miami at 120 W. Kingsmill St. Brown said he hopes donations from the public will help create a fund large enough to motivate anyone with information on Appleton's fate to provide the family with some answers.
"We're hoping to get enough money together that somebody will come forward and tell us what happened to her," Brown said. "As big as this thing is, it's got to be a substantial amount. I've talked to several people who said they are afraid to come forward, so we need to have enough money that we can overcome that fear."
The phone call that led to the renewed search for answers came to Appleton's mother Aug. 20, Brown said. A man who refused to identify himself said he was involved with a gang and had seen Appleton killed by one of the gang's members. He said Appleton's killer dismembered her and disposed of her body by feeding it to "the hogs."
"He told her that we would never find the body and that we should stop looking," Brown said. "My mother and the rest of the family were just devastated by that call,"
Brown said the call seemed plausible because he knew through his own inquiries that his sister had fallen in with a bad crowd and perhaps become involved with the drug gang culture. Until her disappearance, Appleton had lived in Pampa with her two children, ages 7 and 10, and her mother but made frequent trips to Amarillo.
Appleton's mother was the last person known to have seen Appleton when she tried to convince her to come home to Pampa from a north-west Amarillo neighborhood Oct. 18.
The mysterious phone call not only spurred the family to action, but local law enforcement as well. Brown said that despite his position as a police officer, law-enforcement agencies had not been terribly cooperative prior to the call. Officers might have been unwilling to dedicate time to the case because they assumed that Appleton was a drug-addicted runaway, Brown said.
"But that just doesn't make sense. She would never do something like this," Brown said. "She loved her two children, and she would never willingly leave them behind."
Although Brown is hoping that law enforcement will be able to generate some leads, he said he thought the best chance would come if someone were willing to talk in exchange for the reward.
Brown is a former coordinator of Crime Stoppers in Pampa, so he is familiar with the program's system for maintaining the anonymity of informants, and he will use a similar method. Anyone with information will be able to use a code name and need never reveal their true identity, Brown said.
The reward will be paid to anyone who provides information leading to the location of Appleton if she is alive. If she is dead, the reward will be paid if her killer is arrested and convicted.
"It's so heartbreaking when you see her (Appleton's 7-year-old daughter) say she wants her mommy," Brown said. "We just want to find some answers. We want to know what happened."
Pampa News Article From December 2004
December 18, 2004
Pampa Web Connections announces that they are giving free service to those family's of missing loved ones. For more information click here.
This is an article that was printed by the Pampa News on December 21, 2004
December 27, 2004
Pampa News Article
| Vigil signals vigilance for justice
Posted: Monday, Dec 27, 2004 - 11:41:10 am CST
By DAVID BOWSER
Light blue balloons lifted from the hands of those gathered to remember a missing Pampa woman on a clear, cold Christmas night, rising toward the full moon in the eastern sky.
Almost two dozen people, family and friends, gathered about 8 p.m. on Christmas at Purviance and Francis, to remember Monica Appleton who disappeared Oct. 13, 1999. Her mother, Alice Appleton, last saw her daughter that night at the intersection of 17th and Hughes in Amarillo.
Monica Appleton's brother, Donny Brown, said his sister seemed to be deeply troubled by something.
Brown, a Pampa police officer, said the Christmas candlelight gathering wasn't the first to be held in memory of his sister and it won't be the last.
He expects to organize another one at 17th and Hughes in Amarillo in the new year, perhaps in May, on his sister's birthday.
Speaking to the gathering Christmas night here in Pampa, Brown said this was the sixth Christmas without his sister. In the past, he said he has stood back while others took the lead in the search for her, but that will change.
"I can't do that anymore," Brown said.
Alice Appleton, surrounded by her grandchildren, Lexton and Lesleigh LaRue and her daughter-in-law Connie Brown, sits huddled against the cold during a candlelight gathering regarding her missing daughter, and Lexton and Lesleigh's mother.
He said that he's talked to Pampa Police Chief Trevlyn Pitner, and Brown will renew efforts to find his sister.
"We will try harder this year than we ever have," Brown said, "to try to find her."
He said he misses her smile, laugh and joke.
Brown said it has been rough on his mother and his sister's two children, Lexton and Lesleigh LaRue.
"It's one of the toughest things in the world to watch these two kids without their mother," Brown said. "Nobody knows how it feels unless they've lived it. We've lived it. It's been pure hell."
The group released 29 light blue, helium-filled balloons into the night sky. Each balloon had a photo of Monica Appleton along with her description and telephone number to call if anyone finding the balloon had any information concerning her whereabouts.
"There's 29 balloons there," Brown said. "That's how old she was when she disappeared."
A new website dedicated to finding his sister, www.FindMonicaAppleton.com, was established Dec. 23.
"My vigilance for justice will not end here tonight," Brown said. "I have stayed in the shadows in the past. I won't be doing that any longer. I will be out in the forefront to make sure all is done to find Monica."
The $1,000 reward for information leading to his sister, Brown said, has been increased to $6,000.
"She's out there somewhere," Brown said. "We've got to bring her home."
January 25, 2005
Article done by KFDA Television of Amarillo
Missing Woman Billboard
A new billboard goes up in north Amarillo today, one an area family hopes will help them find a missing loved one. Monica Appleton disappeared in October 1999. On October 13, 1999 Monica's mother met her in Amarillo. It was that meeting Monica told her mother she was fearful and told her to get out of town. That was the last time anyone saw Monica Appleton. Monica, a mother of two was 29 years old the day she disappeared. Today, her family is reaching out to the community to help bring their daughter, sister and mother home.
Billboard seeks help finding woman
Posted: Friday, Feb 11, 2005 - 01:20:42 pm CST
By MARILYN POWERS (Pampa News)
A new billboard notice concerning the 1999 disappearance of Monica Lynn Appleton of Pampa was posted yesterday morning on South Hobart Street.
"The billboard put up yesterday morning is exactly the same as one put up in Amarillo, at Amarillo Boulevard and Madison streets, on Jan. 25," said Donny Brown of Pampa, who is Appleton's brother.
The billboard includes Appleton's photo, a $6,000 reward offer for information about her disappearance, and who to contact with information.
Appleton was last seen on Oct. 13, 1999 by her mother, who also lives in Pampa. She was seen in Northwest Amarillo, at 17th and Hughes streets.
"At the time she was last seen by our mother, she appeared to be scared about something but would not go with our mother. She told our mother to get out of the area. Monica kept looking over her shoulder. Our mother asked her what was wrong, and Monica would not say at the time," Brown said in information posted on an Internet website about Appleton.
The last person Appleton is known to have been with is a man named Ivory Tealer, also known as "T" or "T baby", of Amarillo, Brown said.
"Tealer was interviewed but stated that he did not know where Monica was. After being interviewed more, he advised the investigators that he would not talk anymore unless his attorney was present. The interview was terminated and there has been no further questioning of Mr. Tealer," Brown said.
Appleton was born May 21, 1970 in Pampa. At the time of her disappearance, she was 5'5", 120 pounds, with blond hair and hazel eyes. She had two children.
"Throughout the five years since Monica went missing, leads and/or rumors have been followed up on with no luck. There are some who say Monica was killed, and others think she is in hiding. She never had before stayed away from her family, so why start now?" Brown said.
Anyone who wishes to share information on Appleton may call Pampa/Gray County Crime Stoppers at 669-2222 or visit the website at www.findmonicaappleton.com, according to the billboard notice.
Monica Appleton to appear on NASCAR, Southwest Series in Anderson, California
On Saturday September 10, 2005 in Anderson, California at the Shasta Raceway Park Monica will appear larger then life on the hood of Jim Pettit II Ford in the NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division Southwest Series event. We will have professional photographers on site www.motorshooters.com to shoot the action and once they've developed the images of Monica and Jim's effort together we will provide them for the family and friends.
See the NASCAR Southwest Series Photos here