Could There Finally Be a Break in the 1975 Case if Missing 12 Year Old Sheila Lyon & 10 Year Old Sister Kate Lyon … Looking at Convicted Sex Offender Lloyd Lee Welch Jr
Could there finally be a break in the 40 year old missing persons case of sisters Sheila and Katherine Lyon?
Twelve year old Sheila Lyon and her 10 year old sister Katherine went missing March 25, 1975 while walking home from Wheaton Plaza in Kensington, Maryland. 40 years ago, several witnesses, including the girls’ older brother, saw the two girls inside the shopping mall before their disappearance. An extensive search and investigation ensued, but the two girls were never found nor heard from and no one had ever been charged in the case. Now after all this time, the police belive they may finally have a break in the case. Authorities have identified a “person of interest in the 40 year old Lyon’s missing person’s case … he is 57 year old Lloyd Lee Welch, an already convicted sex offender.
Person of Interest, Convicted Sex Offender Lloyd Lee Welch Jr.
Pic – (Montgomery County police)
Welch traveled extensively throughout the United States from the 1970s through the mid-90s, authorities said. He worked as a ride operator for a carnival company, which often set up at malls. He has a criminal history that includes arrests in several different states for sexual offenses against young girls, according to the station.
The two little girls vanished nearly 40 years ago, their disappearance long faded from the public consciousness, their names etched in a stone marker their hope-sapped parents placed in a local cemetery.
But Maryland police have been tenacious about solving this cold case. And on Tuesday they breathed new life into it, when they announced a possible breakthrough.
Convicted sex offender Lloyd Lee Welch Jr., 57, who’s been serving a prison sentence in Delaware since 1997, was near Sheila and Katherine Lyon on that March day in 1975 when they went missing, Montgomery County Police Chief J. Thomas Manger told reporters Tuesday.
Welch was at a plaza that was among the last places that the two girls were seen alive, and he was observed paying attention to the sisters, Manger said. He declined to state how police obtained this lead.
Old case file documents show that a young girl who was with the Lyon sisters that afternoon had described a man who followed the three of them that day. Police developed a sketch partly based on that description, they said. It resembles a mug shot taken of Welch a few years later — in 1977 — when he was arrested in a burglary case in Montgomery.
Welch went on to assault girls in South Carolina and Delaware, where he is in prison, police said. The details of the Delaware case are not clear, but court papers show that he pleaded guilty in 1998 to several sex offenses. Officials said he is due to be set free in 2027 but has asked for early release. The Board of Pardons has scheduled a hearing for July.
Welch’s niece, Debbie Roe, 38, of Dover, Del., said she is the only member of the family who is in regular contact with him. She said she has written letters on and off to him for the past 13 years during his incarceration. She described him as “sweet” and said he is excited when she visits him in prison.
She said that Welch has denied involvement in the disappearance of the Lyon girls but told her that he was at Wheaton Plaza that day.
For more updates, provide your opinions and analysis and read others, go to Scared Monkeys Missing Persons Forum: Sheila and Katherine Lyon.
Authorities are seeking the public’s help to learn more about Welch. Anyone with information is asked to call investigators at 1-800-CALL-FBI, or they can submit a tip online at http://tips.fbi.gov.