The recovery of the remains of a second Texas teen missing since 1997 was confirmed by medical examiners in the Houston area this week. Both missing girls are tied to convicted kidnapper and suspected serial-killer William Reece.
The discovery of the body of Galveston teenager Jessica Cain is the second confirmed this week of Texas teens who went missing in 1997. The identities of the bodies of Cain, and University of North Texas coed Kelli Cox, were both confirmed this week in the Houston area. The deaths of both girls are allegedly tied to William Reece, a convicted kidnapper who let police to the two different fields where the remains of the two young women were found, the Houston Chronicle reported.
Jessica Cain went missing on August 17, 1997 while driving home from a high school event at a restaurant located in Clear Lake, Texas, southeast of Houston. After she was reported missing, her truck was discovered along Interstate 45. Her purse was still inside the truck, the Houston newspaper reported.
What have now been confirmed to be her remains were located a few weeks ago in south Houston near Hobby Airport. Reece had been seen by reporters at the scene. He appeared to be pointing out locations for searchers to focus their efforts. The young girl’s remains were found about four feet under the surface.
In a similar set of circumstances, the remains of Kelli Cox were found near Rosharon, Texas in Brazoria County, south of Houston. Reece was reported by KHOU-CBS11 in Houston to have told investigators where to search for Cox’s remains. Cox’s remains were found in a field alongside Highway 288 that runs from Houston to Freeport.
Reece is currently serving a 60-year sentence in prison for aggravated kidnapping that occurred in 1998. He is considered by officials to be the prime suspect in the kidnapping and murder of 12-year-old Laura Smither who disappeared in April 1997 while jogging in Friendswood, just south of Houston. This is the same month when Cain went missing and one month after Cox disappeared.
Recently, Reece was charged in a 1997 murder of Tiffany Johnson, a Bethany Oklahoma. Johnson was also abducted in July 1197, the Daily Oklahoman reported. DNA evidence recently discovered linked Reece to the death of the 19-year-old woman.
Earlier this year, KHOU’s Laren Talarico interviewed crime novelist Kathryn Casey about William Reece. She interviewed the suspected serial-killer in 2013.
“I went into the prison and sat down to talk to Bill Reece, which was a fairly disturbing experience,” Casey told the Houston reporter. “He is a very cold, very calculating—a very manipulative man. At the same time—at other times, he was laughing and he was charming and he was very much the psychopath.”
The full interview with Casey can be seen here: