Nearly 40 Years Since Going Missing, California Woman’s Case Reopens

Modesto PD

If found, Susan Robin Bender would now be 51 years old.

A 36-year-old missing person’s case is being reopened by the Modesto Police Department in California, CBS News reported.

Susan Robin Bender, then-15 years old, was last seen getting into a green van at the Greyhound Bus Depot on April 25, 1986, in Modesto, according to police. Authorities are asking the public for help in order to close the case and give the family and friends piece of mind knowing what happened to their loved one.

Cops also hope that advances in technology will help them solve the 36-year-old case, CBS News reported.

"Where is she, what happened to her, and whoever did this, they be held accountable," Bender’s friend Sandie Silveria told CBS Sacramento. "The hope of her being found alive is not something you can realistically look at, but the hope of justice being done for her, the hope of this is what happened, and she deserves justice is, I think, what would make us feel a little bit better.”

Silveria added that she believes there is one person who has the answers.

"Her diary and personal belongings were found in someone else's home. Her mother truly thought that is the person who truly knows exactly what happened to Susan, and I agree," Silveria told CBS Sacramento.

Bender's mother, Patricia Chupco, spoke to CBS Sacramento in 2012. At the time, the notion of a serial killer duo known as "the speed freak killers" could be connected to her daughter's disappearance, however, the theory was never proven.

"I haven't quit after all these years. I never will," Chupco said.

Modesto Police Detective Josh Grant issued a statement to CBS News saying: "Given the circumstances of the crime, we also believe there may be individuals (previously unidentified) who may have pertinent information surrounding Susan's disappearance."

Modesto Police teamed up with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) and released an age progression photo of Bender.

An age progression of Susan Bender - Modesto PD / NCMEC

Anyone with information to the case is urged to call the Modesto Police Department at (209) 572-9500 and reference Case Number: 86-27782.

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