Darlene Messer was working the night shift at the Suwannee Swifty convenience store in Lake City, Florida on September 18th, 1989. Shortly after a group of correctional officers departed the store around 12:55am, she was abducted. She put up a hell of a fight, as the store was cluttered and things were knocked down. A trail of money led to the parking lot. It was as if the motive was not robbery; however a few items from the store was noted to be missing (cigarette lighters, etc.).
Though the Columbia County Sheriffs Office made heavy efforts to locate Darlene, her remains were located on September 20th, 1989 in Swift Creek, Union County; about 15 minutes SE of the Suwannee Swifty Store she worked at. Her remains were discovered by a passing railroad conductor who waved down a Florida Highway Patrol Officer when he realized what was in the water. A publicly unidentified male was held for questioning in relation to the case; however, the evidence investigators had was not strong enough to hold him. A number of other suspects came to light in the case; however no arrest has been made, nor has a motive clearly been identified. Her case was briefly mentioned in an episode of "Unsolved Mysteries" in 1991 when Deborah Poe's case was featured.
Crimestoppers of Columbia County is offering a $1000 reward for information that could lead to an arrest. Should you have information, call Crimestoppers at 386-754-7099. You will remain anonymous. A former native of Calgary, Alberta Canada, she left behind a 16-year old daughter named Angela, who lives near Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She was also married to Charles Messer, a death row inmate who was convicted--ironically--of murdering a convenience store clerk in West Florida. He has been ruled out regarding this case. She moved to Florida in 1987 to be closer to him.
staff added media link: DARLENE MESSER was abducted & murdered from the convenience store where she worked in 1989. #FLORIDA #UNSOLVED
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