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Press Conference Coverage by the Sandusky Register of the Harley Dilley Press Conference.
Press Comference begins at 3 min 34 seconds.
The body of Faye Swetlik was recovered in her neighborhood of Churchill Heights. Also found was the body of a deceased male. They state they believe there is no threat to the public at this time and this has been deemed a homicide investigation.
She was last seen Monday February 10, 2020 at 3:45 in her front yard, wearing the clothing seen in this image from school bus survelience video from the day she went missing. She was wearing a black shirt with neon coloring, floral skirt, and rain boots. She was reported missing at 5pm.
Police are asking people local to the area to check their doorbell and security cameras. She went missing from the Churchill Heights Subdivision in Cayce South Carolina. They are not conducting searches or allowing the public to search. The FBI has been asked to join and they have, focusing their investigation on the neighborhood she lived in. 2 cars were removed from near the home by Law Enforcement.
Tip line if you have any information about the case 803-205-4444
The footage of Faye Swetlik leaving the bus just hours before she was reported missing. She is seen in the shirt she was last known to be wearing.
Missing 6 year old Faye Swetlik from Cayce South Carolina.
Sometimes, small town silence makes a crime go unsolved for many years. Sometimes its it's small town corruption, and sometimes it's a lack of experience from small town investigators. Wherever the case, many cases go cold. It's even worse when the case is cold but the entire community knows who did it, and the evidence is there to prosecute, yet no move has been made.
This is the story of Erik Stirling Cross.
On Saturday June 25, 1983, Erik Cross, like many teenagers do attended a graduation party about a mile from his home, with his best friend at the time Bill. It was a key party and Erik was drinking. At about 1 a.m. on Sunday June 26, he left the party on foot headed for home. He was later seen stumbling down the side of the road. He was also seen that night at a gas station talking to the occupants of two different vehicles.
At about 5 a.m. Erik's father was awoken by a loud car pulling into his driveway leaving, returning a second time, and then speeding away. A man in the neighborhood out in his yard, saw a car with white makes and females and reported hearing a female scream. An interview with family later implied this scream was Amber.
At about 5:30, Erik's father went out to get the paper and he found his sons body near the end of their driveway on the street. They took him to the hospital. Returning without their much beloved son.
Initially, it was suspected it was a hit-and-run. Evidence was scattered some length down the road and it made sense. Upon further investigation it became clear to investigators this was a staged hit-and-run scene. They begun to believe that Erik had been tied, dragged, and then run over purposefully, to make it appear as a hit and run accident. An autopsy found multiple lacerations but the condition of the body prevented them from being able to nail down if the lacerations were before being run over or what exactly was the fatal injury.
Being as how this involved teenagers the talk around the area began almost right away. A person of interest began to emerge in Brenton (Brent) Spaulding, a classmate who was a known bully. It was later reported he bullied Erik and had been seen bullying him at the party. It would not stop with Brent though. This would go further out, finally encompassing several persons of interest.
A witness came forward in December of 1983, and reported that Brent Spaulding had confessed one night. He stated that he had come upon Erik near a tree, tied a rope to Erik and to the car and drove around the block. They then ran Erik over to hide what they had done. By this time Brent's car had disappeared. He had family in Florida and it is suspected that could be where the car went but there was never anything solid to back that theory up. To date the car has not been found.
It was at this time, its said that the father of Brent, Brian Spaulding Sr, knew the witness was talking and placed his son in a mental hospital. This is also where the family claims the police gave up on the case.
Near Erik's 49th birthday, local media coverage increased and a tip came in that brought enough new information for Paul Matyas, the under-sheriff at the time, to request arrest warrants on 5 people, who are commonly referred to as the "core crew". This tip to this day has not been released. Those arrest warrant requests to this day remain on the prosecutors desk. A family still waits for justice.
Why, if the evidence is there, is there no arrest in this case? Was this an accident where the teenagers panicked? Or intentional homicide? Is it a little of both?
Why does Amber Thomas continue to avoid talking to police? Why has Brent never been charged? Did Brents sister have any knowledge and was Bill Cook involved? He did spend that night at the Spauldings home. Why was the December 1983 witness account not believed, in spite of the alleged polygraph the witness passed?
Why do the warrant requests remain, un-executed? Why didn't MI Attorney General Bill Schute step in when the family asked him to? Will current MI Attorney General Dana Nessel choose to step forward for this family? Why has their campaign for justice led them nowhere the last 35 years?
There is an active Facebook page for Erik's army. It continues to follow the many legal tribulations of the prime suspect in this case, Brent Spaulding. He has continued to find himself in legal trouble and his series of mugshots would lead one to believe he has not led the best of lives, albeit by his own doing.
Will Erik See Justice?
Link to the Facebook page for Erik: https://www.facebook.com/JusticeForErik/
UPDATE: In January of 2020, the Michigan Attourney General closed their case on Erik Cross. This sends the case back to local investigators.
The family has continued to share their search for justice. One suspect, was offered an immunity deal, however turned it down and then pled the 5th when questioned about the case. The deal is now off the table.
A second suspect has now been offered the deal. He has not responded as of yet.
We will continue to update as we learn more.
In spite of everyone seeming to know who killed Erik Cross, no-one has ever been charged in his death.
36 years later, Erik's family is still fighting for justice in his case.
These are the 5 referred to as the core crew and are suspects in Erik's case.