MI PAIGE RENKOSKI: Missing from Fowlerville, MI - 24 May 1990 - Age 30


Well-known member

Paige Marie Renkoski was last seen speaking to an unknown black male on the side of I-96, near the Fowlerville exit on May 24, 1990. Her vehicle was later located abandoned on I-96 with the key still in ignition and the engine still running. The front door was unlocked and her purse and shoes were found inside.

*Click the Report button on a case if you'd like it to be moved to the general discussion area to be opened for commenting.*

edited by staff to add media link
Last edited by a moderator:


Well-known member

Paige Renkoski, 1990 Case Details

  • Paige lived in the Lansing / DeWitt area and was 30 years old at the time of her disappearance/death.
  • On 05/24/1990 Paige drove her mother to Metro Airport and then visited with a friend that lived in the Canton, MI area. She left her friends home at about 2:00 P.M.
  • At about 7:48 p.m. on the same date, Paige's silver/gray Oldsmobile 2-door was found on the Westbound side of I-96 East of Fowlerville Rd. on the shoulder. The car was running and the windshield wipers were on due to a rain storm. Paige's purse and shoes were inside of the vehicle. The discovery of the unattended vehicle and Paige being missing was reported to the LCSO.
  • Several locations have been searched using search crews, cadaver dogs, ground penetrating radar and other methods. Neither Paige or her remains have been located.
  • Over 1,000 tips have been received and investigated since her disappearance.


Well-known member
Paige was wearing this outfit Paige was wearing when she was abducted.

A white silk blouse, baggy silk pants with a multicolored flower pattern, and a long beaded necklace.


Well-known member

1585363966660.png 1585363976477.png 1585363982220.png 1585363990787.png

Missing Since: 05/24/1990
Missing From: Fowlerville, Michigan
Classification: Endangered Missing
Sex: Female
Race: White
Date of Birth: 02/02/1960 (60)
Age: 30 years old
Height and Weight: 5'6, 125 pounds
Clothing/Jewelry Description: A white silk blouse, baggy silk pants with a multicolored flower pattern, and a long beaded necklace. A photo of Renkoski in these clothes is posted with this case summary.
Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Blonde hair, blue eyes. Renkoski has surgical scars on her right arm and on her right leg. She has an additional scar on her right elbow. Renkoski has two surgical screws inserted into her left knee and her right knee has been replaced.

Details of Disappearance
Renkoski was a substitute teacher from DeWitt Township, Michigan near Okemos in 1990. She dropped her mother off at Detroit Metro Airport on May 24, 1990, then turned around to go home.

Renkoski apparently stopped on the westbound shoulder of Interstate 96 one-half mile from the Fowlerville, Michigan exit at 3:30 p.m. She was last seen speaking with two unidentified African-American males on May 24, 1990. They were standing near a maroon or burgundy minivan. A photo of a similar van is posted with this case summary. There may have been a third man in or near the van. Renkoski was seen gesturing, throwing her hands up in the air, and one of the men put his hand on her shoulder.

A motorist who saw Renkoski and the individual at approximately 3:30 p.m. became concerned when he passed Renkoski's vehicle at the same location four hours later at approximately 7:30 p.m. Investigators were summoned to the scene at that time and found Renkoski's silver 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass Calais abandoned.

The keys were in the ignition, the lights and radio were on, the doors were unlocked and the engine was idling. The driver's side door was unlocked and Renkoski's purse, wallet and shoes were found inside the vehicle, as well as an open bottle of beer. There was no damage to the vehicle. Renkoski has never been seen again.

Authorities are not sure why Renkoski was speaking to the unidentified men and they do not know if they were connected in any way to her disappearance. She had recently deposited a large sum of money in her bank account at the time she vanished, which was untouched following her disappearance. She did not have any travel plans.

Renkoski was close with her mother and was also engaged to be married in November 1990. Family members told investigators that Renkoski may have been having problems with her fiance in May 1990, but it is not believed she chose to voluntarily leave the area for that reason.

Three unsolved abduction/murders of young women occurred in the 1980s in the general area where Renkoski vanished. It is not known if these cases are related to Renkoski's disappearance.

Authorities reopened Renkoski's case in the late 1990s. An unidentified inmate in a Michigan prison was named as a suspect in Renkoski's case in May 2001. The man was in prison for carjacking; his victim was a young woman and the crime occurred only weeks after Renkoski disappeared.

Police interviewed the suspect several times and believed he had been one of the men Renkoski spoke to shortly before she went missing, but when the individual took a lie detector test, he passed and investigators eliminated him from their inquiry.

Sketches of six suspects in Renkoski's disappearance are posted with this case summary. They have never been identified. Foul play is now suspected in her case.


Well-known member

New Leads Emerge In Cold Case
Task Force Identifies Persons Of Interest In Paige Renkoski Case
POSTED: Tuesday, August 4, 2009

DETROIT -- New details on a missing persons case that has spanned decades have emerged.

After a cold case team announced it was going to open up the case of a missing 30-year-old Okemos teacher who vanished in 1990 in Livingston County, new tips came in.

Watch: 19-Year-Old Missing Person Case Cracked Open

Since then, a three-member task force reviewing the case was able to determine a new timeline, new people of interest and technology that can test new evidence.

The cold case team narrowed the time frame of when Paige Renkoski went missing. A witness saw Renkoski standing along westbound Interstate 96 near Fowlerville exit in Livingston County at 4:10 p.m. on May 24 1990.

Previously, the last sighting was believed to be at 3:30 p.m.

Renkoski was gone by 7:30 p.m., that's when a witness saw her car still running in the same location. Her purse and shoes were still inside.

"There have been things that have come up that people remember that they didn't in the initial interviews and the have substantiated some of the facts that we do have, and this makes a stronger case for us," said lead investigator Bill Lenaghan.

The task force has uncovered at least six people of interest in the case. Many of the people of interest are behind bars, but one man who owned a maroon minivan similar to the one that was seen behind Renkoski's vehicle was murdered in 1999.

Investigators said the man's name had come up as a person interest in previous investigations.

The task force said it was working one two scenarios to explain Renkoski's death.

"One scenario involves one person and the other scenario involves as many as four," said cold case investigator Michael Frayer.

One of the groups being investigated has ties to a Detroit gang while the other is believed to be a part of a group of car thieves. Investigators said the murdered man has ties to one of the groups, but they wouldnt say which one.

Never before tested finger and palm prints taken from her vehicle could also bring new answers.

"That is what we're hoping, by looking at this in a different light and bringing certain things into play that we may be able to come up with some identification into who was there," said Lenaghan.

Investigators are hoping the prints will match the prints entered in the database since Renkoski's disappearance.


Well-known member

Detectives hope a 12 year old clue could help solve a 21 year old mystery. Livingston County investigators have released a letter and map that they believe may lead them to the remains of Paige Renkoski. The Okemos woman went missing in May of 1990.

Believe it or not, it was sitting in a file. Investigators say it was hand delivered to a Lansing-based state police detective in 1999. It was analyzed for fingerprints and none were found, but then it sat for all these years.

Detectives working on the Renkoski case believe it's a legitimate lead. In fact, they're using a radar device to search the ground area indicated on the map. The map is hand drawn. It focuses in on a wooded area northwest of downtown Fowlerville. The map was drafted in pencil with red marker to show the path the author says Renkoski's abductors took. Detectives believe whoever drew it had some sort of experience in drafting. It's neatly drawn and even has a disclaimer in the bottom corner saying the map is not to scale.

The map came in a regular envelope with a two page letter. It's also handwritten in pencil. Detectives believe whoever wrote it neatly printed to disguise their handwriting, and used gloves to prevent leaving fingerprints. The author says he or she recently came into some information about Paige Renkoski which may or may not be true."

It goes on to say the author has tried to verify the information and found many details to be true. The person says they drove the route shown on the map which leads to a dead end and a path into a wooded area, an area the author believes Paige Renkoski's remains were left some nine years before the letter was written. It says, for her family's sake, I hope this story is true. The author says he or she has no idea of who the guys are that did this and has agonized about whether to send the information for fear of wasting police time.

Detectives believe this information can help crack the case. They've been out to the area, talked with the property owner and even searched using a ground radar device. They say they didn't find anything, but may go back out there next week. They're also working on several other new tips coming in.


Well-known member

Searchers come up empty in dig for Paige Renkoski

ONWAY TOWNSHIP, Mich. – FBI agents and Livingston County Sheriff's investigators conducted a four-hour dig today for the remains of Paige Renkoski. They found nothing.

Cold case detectives had thought they could be on the verge of a break in the case. Last week, cadaver dogs signaled the presence of human remains in a remote area north of Fowlerville. The location has long been of interest to those trying to solve the mystery.

According to Sheriff Bob Bezotte, an anonymous person dropped off a map and letter to his office a few months after Renkoski disappeared in 1990. The writer said he or she had information about the case, though it could be a "red herring." The person left a map detailing a route from the I-96 Fowlerville exit north to Sober Road.

The writer had no idea how far down the road to look, or on what side. Police were told to follow a narrow clearing to a dead end in the woods, and to walk to the right of a large tree. Investigators were still following those clues today.

The cadaver dogs are trained to signal only for the presence of human remains. Investigators did not say whether animal bones were unearthed at the site.

In spite of today's disappointing results, Bezotte said a "very encouraging" tip came in last Saturday. A woman with ties to the area said her stepfather may be involved,

No details were revealed.

Detectives are still looking for help from the public.


Well-known member

This photograph, which had not previously been released to the public, shows the inside of the 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass Calais that Paige Renkoski was driving when she disappeared from the shoulder of westbound Interstate 96. The car was found still running, her shoes and purse inside. (Photo: Livingston County Sheriff’s Department)


Well-known member
Investigators said this vehicle is similar to the one witnesses reported seeing on the shoulder of westbound Interstate 96 near Fowlerville exit where Okemos resident Paige Renkoski went missing May 24, 1990. (Photo: Livingston County Sheriff’s Department)


Well-known member

Just Questions, No Answers 29 Years After Woman's Disappearance
May 23, 2019


Friday will mark 29 years since a teacher went missing near Fowlerville and it’s a mystery local authorities hold out hope that one day they will solve.

30-year-old teacher Paige Renkoski of Okemos disappeared on May 24th, 1990 after last being seen near Fowlerville. She had dropped her mother off at Detroit Metro Airport at approximately 11:30 that morning and then visited a friend in Canton Township. A clerk at a store west of I-275 remembered her coming in and purchasing beer between 2:30 and 2:45pm. That beer, along with her purse and shoes, were later found inside her running car on the west side of I-96 near the Fowlerville exit.

Witnesses told police they saw Renkoski talking to a man whose maroon minivan was parked behind her car, but all attempts to positively identify that person have failed. The Livingston County Sheriff's Office Cold Case Team continues to investigate but has never found any trace of Renkoski, despite multiple searches for her remains over the years. Sheriff Mike Murphy says the county’s cold case team continues to meet once a week and this case is always a priority.

Sadly, Paige’s mother, Ardis Renkoski, passed away in December of 2017 without ever learning what happened to her daughter. Although in a 2015 interview with WHMI she said she was under no illusions about her daughter’s fate and knew almost immediately that she met a bad end. But in the event a breakthrough ever is made, DNA samples from her and Paige’s two sisters remain on file.

Anyone with information about what they may have seen that day or heard since then is encouraged to contact the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office tip line at 517-546-8477 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP. Information can be left anonymously.


Well-known member

New sketches aim for clues in Livingston County disappearance of Okemos woman in 1990
Updated Jan 21, 2019; Posted Oct 25, 2011


The Livingston County Sheriff's Department released new sketches of suspects in connection with the 1990 disappearance of an Okemos woman last seen in Livingston County.

FOWLERVILLE — A cold case team investigating the disappearance of a Lansing-area woman last seen in Livingston County 21 years ago has released three new suspect sketches.

Authorities say the sketches released Monday in the investigation into Paige Renkoski's disappearance were developed from several recent tips. They're based on tips from a now-retired Michigan State Police intelligence officer and two separate travelers.

The cold case team says it's optimistic about prospects for solving the case.

The 30-year-old Okemos woman was driving home from Detroit Metropolitan Airport when she disappeared in May 1990. Police have ruled the case a homicide even though her body hasn't been found. Searches using ground-penetrating radar took place earlier this year.


Well-known member
Updated Jan 21, 2019; Posted Oct 25, 2011

Cold case team seeking I-94 drivers in 1990 who may recall man trying to pull cars over by flashing police badge

This sketch is of one motorist's description of a man that a driver told police tried to get him to stop on I 94 near the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo exits by flashing a badge.


A cold case police team investigating the 1990 disappearance of a young Okemos woman
from the side of a highway near Fowlerville is seeking more people who may have witnessed a man attempting to pull over cars on I-94 near Kalamazoo by flashing a police badge, the Police found Paige Renkoski's 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass at around 8 p.m. in the same location she was last seen. It was unlocked, with the engine running and the headlights on. Her shoes and purse were still inside the vehicle. She has never been found.

Now a cold-case team has developed three new suspect sketches in connection to its search. The sketch linked to Kalamazoo is of a man that a driver told police tried to get him to stop on I-94 near Battle Creek and Kalamazoo exits by flashing a badge. The man did not stop.

He told police, though, that he saw the man had stopped a woman driver farther down the road.

That scenario could explain why Paige Renkoski stopped along I-96, police say.

Police ask anyone who may have information for the cold-case team to call the Livingston County Sheriff's Department at 517-546-2440.


Well-known member
Tuesday, October 25, 2011


IT'S 21years since Paige Renkoski vanished but cops are still determined to find out why she mysteriously disappeared.

Back in 1990 the 30-year-old was last seen on the Interstate near her DeWitt Township, MI, home talking to a man. But while cops found her unlocked 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass in the same location, with the engine running and the headlights on.

Her shoes and purse were still inside the vehicle, but since then there has been no sign of the substitute teacher. But a cold case team is refusing to give up and have now developed three new suspect sketches in the hope that they will jolt someone's memory and help them unlock the case.

Team member Mike Frayer told the Detroit Free Press: "Somebody out there knows something."

The first is based on a tip from a now-retired Michigan State Police intelligence officer is considered "extremely credible" and a second sketch based on a tip from a woman resembles a former truck driver serving time in New York for four murders.

Investigators are hoping to compare the truck driver's palm print, which was taken after his arrest, with palm prints found on Paige Renkoski's vehicle. Described by Frayer as "spookier," Frayer said, explaining how a saleswoman who worked for a photographer accepted a ride from a Hispanic trucker after her vehicle broke down on the same part of the Interstate 96 about six months before Renkoski went missing. She told officers that once she got into the cab of the semi, the trucker told her: "This is the biggest mistake you ever made."

But Frayer explained: "She thought fast on her feet. She clutched her purse and told him that she traveled a lot and she carried a firearm in her purse. He kicked her out. That may have saved her life."

The third tip comes from a male accountant he told police he noticed a black male with an "old, beaten car" flashing a police badge at him in an attempt to get him to stop on the expressway, investigators said.

"We feel guardedly optimistic," Frayer said about the investigation thus far. "We're establishing more of a foundation." If you have information for the cold-case team, call the Sheriff's Department at (517) 546-2440.


Staff member
Cold Case Fowlerville: The Disappearance Of Paige Renkoski
May 5, 2020

Paige Marie Renkoski was last seen on May 24, 1990. Solving her disappearance became her mother Ardis's mission in life. Sadly, Ardis died never knowing what happened to her daughter.

Authorities reopened Renkoski's case in the late 1990s. In 1999 an anonymous tip was hand-delivered to a Lansing-based Michigan State Police detective. The tip contained a letter and map that said Paige's remains were left in the wooded area. It wasn't until 2011 after cadaver dogs indicated potential human remains at on the private property that the FBI, the Livingston County Sheriff's Department, and forensic experts from Michigan State University began searching and excavating the area. The effort produced no answers.

Paige's family has never given up searching for answers and raising awareness. It was through those efforts that a witness stepped forward years after Paige's disappearance with a new suspect description. Below is the sketch produced from that description.

Though Paige's mother passed away without answers, she used the knowledge she gained to help other family's with missing loved ones. Paige's sister and niece have now stepped up to continue Ardis's mission to find Paige.

Read More: Cold Case Fowlerville: The Disappearance Of Paige Renkoski | Cold Case Fowlerville: The Disappearance Of Paige Renkoski


Forum statistics

Latest member