18 Creepy Unsolved Crimes Nobody Can Explain

We have always been intrigued by the mysterious. Some events that happened in the past are so weird, that even the most hardened conspiracy theorist denier has to scratch his head in disbelief.

As rational human beings, we tend to agree that a logical explanation exists for everything that happens.

We do have to admit however that this sometimes simply doesn’t apply, as this list will clearly prove.

Most of the unsolved crimes that nobody can explain in this list are clear murders, others are just believed to be murders as the crime itself not only remains unsolved, also what exactly happened.

We haven’t put these in a particular order, as these mysterious crimes are all equally fascinating in their own way.

1. Sodder Children Disappearance

The Sodder family lived in Fayetteville, West Virginia, and consisted out of father George, mother Jennie, and 10 children, 9 of whom lived with them.

On Christmas Eve 1945, a fire broke out in the residence. Father, George, his wife Jennie, and 4 of the 5 children managed to escape the blazing fire.

This means 5 of the 9 children still had to be in the house during the fire that destroyed the entire house. The weird thing is that their bodies have never been discovered.

The Sodder family have always believed their 5 children survived the fire and have been abducted, but clear evidence for this theory has never been found.

Via Bravegirlspodcast / Instagram

2. Case of the Black Dahlia

Elizabeth Short has been murdered in Los Angeles, California in 1947 and is also known as “The Black Dahlia.”

The reason why this murder is so infamous is not only because it has never been solved, but also because her body was severely mutilated from the waist.

Strangely enough, since the murder more than 500 men have actually confessed to it, but none of them has been deemed credible or had enough supporting evidence to start a case.

Short’s arrest photo from 1943 for underage drinking / Source: Wiki Commons

3. Who put Bella in the Wych Elm?

In 1943, 4 children found the skeletonized remains of a woman in Hagley Wood near the city of Hagley, UK. The woman is believed to have been murdered in 1941.

Up until this day, the identity of the woman is unknown, and no suspect has ever been arrested.

What’s strange about this case is that mysterious graffiti message, related to the mystery, appeared on a wall in Upper Dean Street in Birmingham, reading 

Who put Bella down the Wych Elm – Hagley

If this is the work of the killer, it confirms that he knew the identity of his victim, and even though multiple similar messages have appeared around the area where the victim was found, there hasn’t been a breakthrough in the case yet.

bella murder graffiti
Graffiti on the Wychbury Obelisk / Source: Wiki Commons

4. Kathy Hobbs

Kathy Hobbs was a 16-year old girl that was brutally murdered in 1987. Even though this murder case has been closed as a conviction was reached against the serial killer Michael Lee Lockhart, he never actually confessed to the murder so it remains unclear whether or not he actually did it.

The most interesting part about this murder though is that Kathy suffered from agoraphobia and was afraid to leave the house because of her condition.

Ever since she was a little child, she predicted that she would die at 16 and constantly had visions about this event.

Mysteriously, the moment she turned 16 she claimed that her agoraphobia disappeared, without any medical help whatsoever. The first time she left the house by herself, she never came back as she was brutally murdered.

Kathy Hobbs unsolved mystery
Source: https://unsolvedmysteries.fandom.com/wiki/Kathy_Hobbs

5. Is there a Smiley Face Killer?

Bodies being found in the water of college-aged males with athletic bodies are labeled as mysterious drownings. In fact, about 45 bodies have been found in similar circumstances in at least 11 states.

That remains the conclusion of the FBI, even after retired New York City detectives Kevin Gannon and Anthony Duarte, along with Dr. Lee Gilbertson, a criminal justice professor, and gang expert created a theory of a serial killer or a group of serial killers being responsible for the casualties.

In at least a dozen of the cases, there has been some sort of graffiti found which depicts a smiley face, hence they labeled the suspect(s) in their theory the smiley face killer(s).

Is there really a smiley face killer? As of today, occasionally mysterious drownings still occur.

Smiley face killer graffiti
Source: Pixabay

6. The Springfield Three

The Springfield Three remains an unsolved crime mystery up until this day and relates to the disappearance of friends Suzanne “Suzie” Streeter and Stacy McCall, and Streeter’s mother, Sherrill Levitt.

On June 7, 1992, the 2 girls and Suzie’s mother disappeared from their home in Springfield, Missouri. Nothing inside the house had been touched, including the car, there was no sign of a struggle and the only peculiar thing was a broken porch light outside of the house.

The only real lead as to what happened remains an inmate named Robert Craig Cox who claims he knows that the girls have been murdered, and claims the bodies will never be found.

Up until this day, their case remains filed as a “Missing Person” case, even though the victims have been proclaimed legally dead since 1997.

Springfield three
Source: Springfield PD

7. The Grimes Sisters

Two sisters named Barbara and Patricia Grimes wanted to go out on the night of December 28, 1956, to see a showing of Elvis Presley’s “Love Me Tender.” They never made it back home and their naked bodies were discovered on January 22 the following year alongside a deserted road in Willow Springs.

It’s one of the most infamous cases Chicago has ever seen, especially since the huge amount of effort that has been put into finding the killer, nobody has ever been convicted for the crime.

What makes the murder particularly strange is that numerous people have reported having seen the two girls after the night they were supposedly murdered, up until their bodies had been discovered.

Barbara and Patricia Grimes
Source: Wiki Commons

8. Hinterkaifeck murders

A farm in the small town in Bavaria, Germany, about 70 kilometers (43mi) north of Munich has been the scene of one of the most gruesome unsolved murder mysteries in German history.

On the night of March 31, 1922, the 6 people living on the farm, consisting of 4 adults and 2 small children, were brutally killed with a mattock.

STrange things reportedly happened in the months preceding the murders. The maid quit as she believed the house to be haunted, and the father of the family found tracks in the snow coming towards the house, without tracks going back.

There were also suspicious noises, a newspaper from Munich that belonged to nobody in the area, and the house keys disappearing the days before the murders.

Police suspect therefore that the killer was already on the premises before the murders occurred, and also found out he remained there for at least 2 days after slaughtering the entire family.

Hinterkaifeck murders
Source: Wiki Commons

9. Villisca axe murders

A horrific crime took place on the evening of June 10, 1912. 6 members of the Morre family, including 4 children and 2 houseguests were brutally murdered with an ax.

Many possible suspects were interrogated, and one of those suspects actually went to trial twice.

The first trial ended with a hung jury and the second trial resulted in an acquittal of the suspect.

The horrific crime remains unsolved up until this day.

Villisca axe murders
Source: Wiki Commons

10. Texarkana Moonlight Murders

In the spring of 1946, the town of Texarkana, Texas, was plagued by a serial killer who randomly attacked people over the weekend.

The attacks resulted in 5 people being killed, and 3 seriously wounded and the attacker has been dubbed “The Phantom Killer” or “The Phantom Slayer” by the media.

Even though police had a prime suspect called Youell Swinney, they never gathered enough evidence to convict him so the case remains unsolved until today.

Texarkana serial killer
Source: Wiki Commons

11. Elisa Lam

Elisa Lam was a Canadian student at the University of Vancouver, whose body was discovered inside a water tank on top of the Cecil Hotel in downtown Los Angeles.

The case is particularly disturbing and mysterious because the police have released footage of Elisa’s behavior moments before she disappeared.

In this footage, Lam can be seen inside the hotel’s elevator as it appears to be malfunctioning.

Strangely enough, she is behaving quite oddly and theories about what actually happened are still all around the internet today.

See for yourself what you make of this video of Elisa, the last time she was seen alive:

The official version as to how Elisa Lam died?

Accidental drowning.

12. Josh Maddux

For nearly 7 years, teenager Josh Maddux had been missing after going out of the house for a simple errand.

When construction workers were in the process of demolishing an old cabin, just 2 blocks away from Joh’s house, they discovered his body in a fetal position inside the cabin’s chimney.

One would suspect that he probably fell into the chimney or would try to access the cabin through that chimney, but there was a steel rebar on top to keep animals out, making this theory impossible.

So why was Josh Maddux inside the cabin? And if he was trying to climb up, why did he take off nearly all of his clothes?

One theory posted by a Reddit user claims he fell prey to a serial killer.

This is one unresolved mystery that remains a question mark up until today.

Josh maddux murder
Picture credit: Pixabay

13. Hannah Upp

Hannah Upp is a teacher who is suffering from ‘dissociative fugue, a condition that is characterized by reversible amnesia for personal identity, including the memories, personality, and other identifying characteristics of individuality.

In other words, people suffering from this very rare disorder simply forget who they are for an extended period of time, which can last several months.

Hannah disappeared in 2017 after hurricane Irma and hasn’t been found since.

The strange thing is that this isn’t the first time that Hannah disappeared, as this has happened several times before. This gives her family hopes that she will be found alive and well again someday.

Picture credit: Virginislanddailynews.com

14. Chicago Tylenol murders

In 1982, 7 people lost their lives due to poisoning after taking medication. Apparently, a deranged psychopath had been lacing Tylenol-branded acetaminophen capsules with potassium cyanide.

Not a single suspect has been charged with the poisonings, even though somebody claiming to be responsible for them, identified as James William Lewis, sent extortion letters asking for $1 million to make the attacks stop.

They never found any evidence that Lewis was responsible for the poisonings though, and he sat out 13 years of a 20-year sentence on the extortion case, officially leaving the Chicago Tylenol murders unsolved.

tylenol murders
Source: Wiki Commons

15. 1991 Austin yogurt shop murders

Another chilling unsolved murder case is the 1991 Austin yogurt shop murders in which 4 young girls were brutally slain inside the store 2 of them worked. The other 2 girls were a sister and a friend of one of the girls working at the store who was waiting for a ride home while helping to clean up the shop.

After the brutal murder, the store was set on fire.

During the initial investigation, 2 men were arrested and actually confessed to the murder, and sequentially convicted. In 2009 however, they were released again due to lack of evidence.

As of today, the police are still looking for an unidentified male using DNA samples found as one the youngest of the 4 victims.

Austin yogurt murder shop murders victims
Picture credit: Verging On / YouTube

16. Lars Mittank

During the holidays of 2014, Lars Mittank traveled with some friends from Germany to Bulgaria. On July 6, Lars, who is a Werder Bremen football fan got into a fight with fans from rival club Bayern Munich.

The fight gave him a ruptured eardrum and after being given antibiotics, the doctor advised that he wouldn’t fly so he stayed in Bulgaria while his friends made the trip back home to Germany.

The following day, after checking in at a cheap hotel, he started to behave paranoid. He sent a text to his mother claiming he was being followed by 4 men.

When he was back in the airport, security camera footage shows Mittal acting strange and finally leaving his back and storming out of the building. Apparently, he jumped over a fence straight into the woods.

Check out the footage of Lars in the airport here:

Lars vanished from the face of the earth after this incident, and nobody has seen him since.

What probably explains his behavior is that he must have suffered some brain damage during the fight, triggering a psychotic episode. This would explain his sudden paranoia

All of the answers you’ll find, including the one we are presenting, are merely guesses as nobody knows exactly what happened.

17. Brian Shaffer

An equally disturbing case is the disappearance of Brian Shaffer, a medical student at the University of Columbus, Ohio, who vanished on the night of April 1, 2006, after visiting a bar during spring break.

While he was separated from his friends, they assumed he went home, but never arrived there.

Security cameras filmed him talking to 2 women around 2 am and showing him re-entering the bar shortly after.

The strange thing is that cameras never filmed him coming out, and there was only one entry to the bar at that time.

Extensive research of the video footage also makes it 100% percent certain that Brian didn’t leave the bar through the only other possible way out, the fire escalator.

How did Brian Shaffer leave the bar? Nobody knows up until today.

Brian Shaffer and father
Picture credit: Findbrianshaffer / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode

18. Theo Hayez

In May 2019, the Belgian tourist Theo Hayez was seen leaving the Cheeky Monkey’s bar in Byron Bay, a coastal town in Eastern Australia.

He is seen on footage walking on the sidewalk as he has just been kicked out of the bar, apparently because he was too drunk.

Data from his phone records show that he was walking in the opposite direction as to where he was supposed to go to get back to his hotel. His phone also disconnects near Cape Byron, near a cliff with a lighthouse.

As of now, there hasn’t been any sign of Theo and detectives assume he fell off the cliff and drowned in the water.-, even though his hat has been found on a completely different location in the bushland around Byron bay.

What happened to Theo Hayez? Did he just fell off a cliff or did something else happen to him?

As of now, all theories remain open until further evidence is discovered.

Picture credit: https://www.facebook.com/Looking.for.Theo

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