The Body of Missing Whitney Heichel Found on Larch Mountain East of Gresham … Police Arrest Jonathan Holt for Aggravated Murder
The body of missing 21 year old Whitney Heichel was found on Larch Mountain, a remote, forested area east of Gresham, OR. Whitney Heichel went missing on Tuesday moring 10/16/12 when she drove off to work and disappeared. Police have arrested 24 year old Jonathan Holt of Gresham, a neighbor of missing Whitney Heichel, for investigation of aggravated murder. Holt was arrested after a series of interviews didn’t quite add up and investigators found his fingerprints and DNA in her recovered car.
Searchers found the body of a young Oregon woman who vanished this week on her way to work and a neighbor has been arrested, Gresham police said late Friday night.
The body of Whitney Heichel, 21, was found on Larch Mountain, a remote, forested area east of Gresham, Police Chief Craig Junginger told a news conference.
After collecting DNA and fingerprints and conducting three interviews over three days, police arrested Jonathan Holt, 24, of Gresham, for investigation of aggravated murder, the chief said.
Jonathan Holt – Arrested Aggravated Murder (Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office)
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21 year old Whitney Heichel has been missing in Gresham, OR since Tuesday, October 16, 2012. Heichel did not show up to work Tuesday morning at Starbucks for her 7 am shift after leaving her home at 6:45 am. Gresham police called her disappearance “suspicious.” Six hours after Whitney Heichel went missing, her vehicle was found just 4 miles from her home in a Walmart pareking lot with the passenger side window busted out, the back seats were down.
Whitney’s husband Clint said they live only a couple of minutes away from where his wife works at Starbucks.
“She got ready, her normal thing, got up and just kissed me goodbye and I kind of woke up and said ‘bye, I’ll see you when you get home,’” said Clint Heichel. “And then about 8:15 her boss called me.”
Police said Heichel’s ATM card was used Tuesday morning at a Shell gas station at 257th and SE Stark Street.
Heichel’s Ford Explorer was found abandoned at around 11 a.m. Tuesday in the parking lot of the Wood Village Walmart at 23500 NE Sandy Boulevard. The passenger side window was smashed.
UPDATE I: A family member told KGW several transactions were made on Heichel’s debit card, including at ATM machines and 3 different gas stations.
They said that gas station attendants at one of those locations — a truck stop in Troutdale – remembered seeing her SUV and said Heichel was sitting in the passenger seat with a man driving. They said the man was acting suspicious and hurried, buying only a small amount if gas.
Police have not released any further details in the investigation.
Authorities searched a park in Clackamas County and also Larch Mountain Wednesday in connection with a Gresham woman’s Tuesday disappearance.
Police searched a heavily wooded area of Dodge Park, north of Sandy, Wednesday afternoon for 21-year-old Whitney Heichel. They also searched Larch Mountain in the Columbia River Gorge.
Investigators said Heichel’s SUV was seen in the area.
They are asking anyone who may have seen the SUV during that time to call the Gresham Police Department tip line at 503-618-2719.