WILSON — The mysterious July 7 disappearance of a teenage girl and her 21-year-old boyfriend has prompted a massive law enforcement search that is heading into its third month.
Rumors are rampant, said Wilson Police Chief Felix Hernandez, who has been heading up the investigation into the disappearance of Molly Miller, 17, and Colt Haynes, 21, who are both from the Wilson area.
“We've heard that they were (seen alive) in Wichita Falls, Texas. We've checked Texas twice,” Hernandez said. “We've had rumors they were buried somewhere.
“We've done air searches, ground searches, pond searches,” he said, adding that officers also have searched oil wells because of rumors the couple many have been killed and their bodies dumped down an oil well.
Some of the hottest rumors have centered on a stolen car chase that occurred the night Miller and Haynes disappeared.
The chase began the night of July 7 when the stolen vehicle “did a doughnut” in front of a Wilson police officer and took off at a high rate of speed, the police chief said.
The officer pursued the car south to the Love County border, where a Love County sheriff's officer took over the pursuit before eventually losing the vehicle.
About two weeks later, the car was found abandoned in rough terrain in western Love County, said Garrett Lambert, the missing girl's brother.
The car had run through a fence and over some small trees and brush, Hernandez said. It was found not far from where the chase had ended.
No blood or other signs of foul play were found in the car, the police chief said.
Jessica Brown, spokeswoman for the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, confirmed her agency is assisting with the investigation but declined to say whether fingerprints of Miller or Haynes were found in the vehicle.
“That would be part of the investigation,” she said.
Lambert, 23, said family members have been told Miller called 911 shortly after midnight the night of her disappearance, but that she hung up and didn't say anything. When the operator tried to call back, there was no answer, Lambert said.
Telephone records show the couple also made several calls to friends, Lambert said, adding that Haynes reportedly told some friends he had broken an ankle and was coughing up blood.
“They made phone calls to some friends that morning, wanting a ride,” the police chief confirmed. “We talked to those people. They said, ‘Yeah, we got phone calls,' but they said they were busy and couldn't go pick them up.
“And then that's the last they were heard of,” he said.
Lambert said family members have given law enforcement officials the name of an individual they think may have been in the stolen car with Miller and Haynes the night of their disappearance.
Hernandez said police officers have questioned that person “more than once,” but he has denied knowing anything.
“The last one he said he was going to talk to his lawyer,” Hernandez said.
Officers don't know whether to suspect foul play, Hernandez said.
Miller has run away in the past and Haynes has been on probation for a methamphetamine offense.
“We've checked a lot of different places, but still haven't come up with anybody or anything,” Hernandez said. “We're still looking.”