The Disappearance of Deborah McCall

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DISAPPEARANCE:

Deborah A. McCall was born on March, 30, 1963. She was a student at Downers Grove North High School in the village of Downers Grove, Illinois. She was last seen leaving the school on November 5, 1979.

PRIME SUSPECT:

The prime suspect in Deborah’s case is serial killer Bruce Lindahl. He operated in the Chicago area from the mid-1970s until his death in April 1981. He is currently a suspect in 12 murders and nine rapes, but is possibly involved in many more cases.

Lindahl had previously had run-ins with police for minor crimes, but didn’t really come onto their radar until the kidnapping and rape of 25-year-old Debra Colliander in 1980. He was arrested for the crime, but later released on bail, after which Debra mysteriously vanished. With her missing, the charges against Lindahl were dropped in 1981.

In 1982, Debra’s body was found by a farmer in rural Oswego Township, Illinois. She’d been buried in a shallow grave, and while an autopsy was unable to determine her cause of death, it was ruled a homicide. It’s currently the belief of investigators that Lindahl is responsible, having either committed the murder himself or hired someone to do it for him.

Unfortunately, Lindahl would never be charged with Debra’s murder. Several months before her remains were found, in 1981, Lindahl died after accidentally slashing an artery in his leg with a knife. He’d been at 18-year-old Charles Huber’s apartment and had been stabbing the teenager when he accidentally injured himself. He ultimately bled to death, and both bodies were found together.

After Lindahl’s death, numerous photos of young women were found inside his home. One was of Deborah. If she was one of his victims, she’s the only one who remains missing.

In 2020, DNA evidence proved Lindahl was responsible for the 1976 murder of 16-year-old Pamela Maurer of Chicago. Pamela’s body had been found by the side of the road and posed to look like she’d been the victim of a hit-and-run.

Forensic evidence gave investigators a DNA profile of her killer in 2001, but it would be another 19 years before they got a break. Police teamed up with Parabon NanoLabs to create a description of their suspect, based on his DNA, after which they created a genealogical family tree. From there, they were able to match the killer’s DNA to Lindahl, whose DNA had been obtained during an exhumation of his remains.

CASE CONTACT INFORMATION:

Deborah “Debbie” A. McCall went missing from Downers Grove, DuPage County, Illinois on November 5, 1979. She was 16 years old, and was last seen wearing a sweater, a beige hooded zip-up jacket, blue jeans, light brown suede shoes, and a yellow gold necklace. At the time of her disappearance, she stood at 5’2″ and weighed 105 pounds. She had long brown hair and grey eyes. Her upper teeth were crocked, and she had freckles. She may have been wearing contacts.

Deborah’s dentals and DNA are available for comparison, should her body be located. She has been compared to numerous Jane Does from across the United States, including the Walker County Jane Doe, the Fond du Lac Jane Doe and Jane Arroyo Grande Doe.

Currently, her case is classified as endangered missing, with foul play suspected. If alive, she would be 58 years old.

Those with information regarding the case are asked to contact the Downers Grove Police Department at 630-434-5600.

Image Credit: Unidentified Wiki

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