Deceased: Part III

This is my third post in the series on deceased career criminal Victor Wonyetye Jr. and his ties to several missing persons cases.
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About 6 months before Tammy Belanger disappeared in Exeter, New Hampshire, police in Greenacres, Florida were also investigating a missing child.

On May 27, 1984,  eight-year-old Majorie "Christy" Luna walked from her residence to the Greenacres Grocery to buy her family's cats, Boo-Boo and Skeeter, some food.

She made her purchase around 3 pm and left the store.

She has not been seen since.

Christy lived less than 500 yards from the grocery store, and is described as having a slight speech impediment and is hearing impaired.




Over the years, authorities had been interested in at least three suspects related to the girl's disappearance; one being Victor Wonyetye, Jr.

Why was Wonyetye associated with the case?

As well as being a convicted sex offender, here are some of the reasons:

  • Just Relocated to Area: He was someone with a long criminal history and evidently an interest in children who was new to Florida. The scene of Christy's disappearance is about 6 miles from where Wonyetye was living. 

  • Arrested Weeks Before: Twenty days prior to Christy's disappearance, he was spotted hiding in the bushes near windows of a Lake Worth, FL home by an off-duty police officer. He told the officer he was looking for a lost cat, but that was unconvincing.  Considered a "peeping-tom," Wonyetye was charged with prowling. Unfortunately, local authorities did not realize he was still on parole in New Hampshire at the time of the arrest. As such, they allowed him to post bond and he was released the next day. 

  • Fled the State: Investigators had not identified Wonyetye as a person of interest in the Luna disappearance, and again, not realizing that he was on parole in another state, he was sentenced to 30 days in jail for prowling (time-served was performed weeks after Luna went missing). Not long after his release, Wonyetye would leave Florida and return to New Hampshire. It was then that Tammy Belanger vanished and authorities focused on Wonyetye in relation to both cases. 

  • Unconvincing Alibi: He told authorities that he had gone to church and went bowling with relatives when Luna went missing. Police evidently were able to confirm part of the story.

  • Witness Statements: A man fitting Wonyetye's description was seen at the Greenacre Grocery around the time of the disappearance. Also, authorities learned that after church on the day of the girl's disappearance, he had attended a party;  a party that happened to be in the same neighborhood where Christy Luna went missing. 

  • His Statements: Several years later after Wonyetye had been arrested on more burglary and peeping-related charges, authorities produced tapes of several inmates who gave statements that the man had said he had killed both Christy Luna and Tammy Belanger.  

Regarding the "His Statements" above, I tend to place little credence on "jail house snitches;" as there is just too much self-interest involved (e.g. inmate receives a reduction in punishment for providing vague information on high profile cases).

But the statements supposed to be from Wonyetye included an interesting detail.

One offender said Wonyetye boasted of knowing how chemicals could be used to dispose of a body.

Sounds familiar; like when he confidently told his coworkers in New Hampshire that he could effectively hide a corpse in such a manner that it would never be found.

And the chemicals?

Perhaps he was referring to chemicals like those used by employees to remove paint.

Chemical used in auto body work.

The kind of work that Wonyetye did and knew well.
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I'll continue next week with what authorities caught Victor Wonyetye Jr. doing six years after the disappearances of these two young girls. 

You can read my other posts in this series by going here.

26 comments:

messymimi said...

What's saddest about all of this is that the families may suspect, but will never know for certain.

Diane Estrella said...

How are you able to put all of this together and the authorities could not..... so sad for that family.

Miranda Hardy said...

This was a tragic tale here. I was close to her age then, so it was pretty scary to the families here.

Maxi said...

You have tied Wonyetye's ties to the crimes in a logical way, Slam. Hopefully the family will see justice.
Blessings ~ Maxi

Pat Hatt said...

The worst thing is they will prob never know, so much can be attributed to the sicko but then can't be proven.

Lydia Kang said...

Do you have a job in the criminal justice system? Because you should.

Bob G. said...

Slamdunk:
Good observations on Wonyetye.

I'm wodnering if he was talking about ALKALINE solutions for body removal or certain acids.
Either one can work on autos to do many things.

Technically, the PD "could" have held him for 72 hours, right?
(time to check other states for outstanding warrants).

Very interesting story.

Stay safe out there.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

He definitely sounds like he was up to no good.

Carol Kilgore said...

The good thing is he'll never hurt anyone else. The bad thing is if he did kill those two little girls, the families will never be certain of it.

Unknown said...

Oh, this is so chilling even years after the fact -- and it breaks my heart to think of those families of the little girls, never knowing for sure what became of their daughters. I wish our incredible technology was used to connect all these police departments so officers would know immediately when someone has a record in another state ... do you know if they are now able to instantly make those connections??

Jen said...

I thought snitches didn't do well in prison. Do they really gain that much?

BobKat said...

Building a valid case... thing is, I've worked as an auto tech, use of those chemicals you may be referring to. There is no way working at a place with access to those chemicals gave me access to enough to dissolve a body. In fact, even a test tube full would have raised euebrows.

I know another case where a person i found of interest boosted the same claim, that he could make a body disappear. He said this to three of Brianna Maitland's girlfriends, according to a reliable source.

This is where it becomes extremely frustrating to a civilian assisting in a potential crime. You get a lead and police won't cooperate in assisting. In the case of Brianna the police know the story. What they have done about it is a mystery.

Just saying... the chemical connection to me seems like your weakest link in the case. He had a chainsaw you said. That's a more likely tool to dispose of a body.

There must be more of a modus operandi (sp?) between the two cases... what's the similarities between FL and NH? A chainsaw? Where could he abduct and dispose of a body in FL? I believe I know the perfect place in Exeter NH. I already suggested where that might be.

Next chance I get I'll send you a Google map of the area; perhaps there is a correlation to similar places in FL.

For the record while many people think this is sad, preventable and a parent's fault, predators could care less. They also try hard to cover their crimes, but they are really quite predictable, if only the information about them is correctly assembled. Just because Wonyetye is dead doesn't mean the cases are at an end.

Sarah Ahiers said...

Ugh. How sad for those poor families

JJ.in.Phila said...

If it was him, he didn't have time to move the body very far.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

This is why there needs to be a better system so that criminals who cross state lines don't get a "clean slate", because the new state doesn't know about the criminal record in the previous state.

Anthony said...

I agree with other posters---a tragedy, and even sadder that the victims' families will not get closure.

Blond Duck said...

That's so sad! All she wanted to do was feed her kitties!

RaeAbigael said...

cool post! :)
Anyway, I hope you can drop by my blog too dear! :)

xoxo,
Rae \(^o^)/
Raellarina - The Ballerina on Fire

Momma Fargo said...

I believe you will connect all the dots on this one! Can't wait for the rest!

Candice said...

Beautiful girl. So sad.

Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

This is giving me the creeps. It seems so easy to connect the dots, but yet no one did, at least not in time...

Slamdunk said...

@ Dr. Kang: I am a has-been...

@ Bob: Yeah, that would be the right chemicals. Since it was 1983 and computer verification systems were lacking, I am sure they would have wanted to hold him more if they new he was a parolee from another state. Unfortunately, the tracking mechanisms we take for granted now were just not there back then.

@Unknown: Yes, law enforcement databases are much better now. Though oversights still happen, I'd say a parolee from NH is arrested in FL in the same manner and he has a unique name like Wonyetye, they make the connection and don't release him 10 out of 10 times.

@ Jen: That is accurate that snitches don't do well in prison, but child molesters are a hated folks behind bars so even in inmate code, telling on them about other missing children is not like telling on a regular person incarcerated.

@ JJ: Not so. Since the young girl went missing around 3 pm and was not discovered and reported until after 8 pm, that would give someone lots of time to hide a body before anyone knew anything.

@ BobKat: Thanks for the different perspective on the chemicals. Since he just started working at the one body shop, I'd think that he would have had limited access to shop supplies anyway--but it is a possibility.

Thanks for the map and yours is a reasonable guess for a body dump. I have to think that searchers focused on the same areas as well, but looking for a child who was injured or asleep is much different than a body recovery search.

Angelique said...

I was playing with her the day she went missing she was my friend and I think of her everyday its coming up on thirty years with no answers. It hurts all the time

Slamdunk said...

@ Angelique: I appreciate you taking time to leave a comment about Tammy's case.

I am always looking for unique perspectives on missing persons cases. When you get a chance, could you email me at theslamdunktrove@gmail.com so that I could ask you a few questions?

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Christy grew up 1 street over from me. I was born the year after she went missing. My children bring her mom flowers every mothers day . She will always be missed. Christy we will find you on day you will never be forgotten

Slamdunk said...

@ Anonymous 7/31/2014: Thank you for sharing the wonderful gesture that you and your children do every Mother's Day. We need more people in this world like you.