Johanna Young ~ 1992
Johanna Young, 14, disappeared on a cold and foggy night from her family home in Watton on 23 December 1992. She was found murdered the afternoon of Saturday, December 26, 1992 after a passerby found her shoe and called police.
She was found face down in a water filled gravel pit, her jeans and underwear were missing. Johanna was covered in scratches, she had a skull fracture and her cause of death was ruled as a drowning.
Detectives speculated that whomever killed Johanna was local to the area and his identity has been hidden by family and/or friends. Detectives believe that gravel pit Johanna was found it was only known to the locals at the time.
It is remarkable that police questioned and arrested a number of men who were local to that area in the days after Johanna’s death, yet no one has been tried for her murder.
The police get new leads often enough yet each hits a dead, some of the leads that come in are brought in through arrests that are unrelated to the murder of Johanna. All of this is frustrating to both the family and the police.
Originally, very early into the investigation police thought that Johanna’s killer was a local whose identity was being hidden by friends and/or family. They are correct in that. It’s the same story that has played out in many murders that have gone unsolved. Police know someone close to the murderer holds the key but refuses to unlock the gate so that an arrest can be made.
Sometimes a killing is accidental, it stops being entirely accidental when steps are taken to hide a body, conceal evidence and withhold the truth from the police. In Johanna’s case, her killer never meant to kill her. It was an accident, the killer panicked after her death. It is more than likely that the killer was under the age of 21 at the time of her murder.
The murderer was not a serial killer which means that his identity is actually easier to figure out by looking at behaviors. That also means that people other than this person’s family saw behavioral changes and for whatever reason did not report anything to the police.
Johanna’s parents suffered so long without the truth, yet we all have the ability to help ease the pain and suffering of another human being. It is never too late to come forward.
Cristal M Clark
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