KETR

Properties Searched In Connection With Woman Missing Since 1991

May 23, 2019

Sheriffs deputies and volunteers searched a former residence of missing woman Carey Mae Parker's ex-boyfriend, a law enforcement official said Thursday.

Sgt. Jeff Haines of the Hunt Co. Sheriff’s Office said searchers used cadaver dogs and ground penetrating radar on three adjacent properties as part of the investigation into Parker's 1991 disappearance from the area of Quinlan, TX.

Haines declined to elaborate on any results of the day's efforts before notifying Parker's family about the searches. 

But the detective did confirm the search areas included land that once belonged to the family of Cody Songer, a man Parker dated before going missing in 1991. 

"It started out with the building that Trish wanted to search," Haines said referring to Patricia Gager, one of Parker's two sisters. 

In April, Gager launched a fundraiser for renting ground penetrating radar to search one of the three properties. She later cancelled it and instead donated the money to a missing person group after the landowner insisted on coordinating searches with law enforcement, something Gager opposed. 

In 2012, a woman rumored to have information about Carey's whereabouts mailed her sister Patricia a hand-drawn map of the properties searched Thursday.
Credit Courtesy of Patricia Gager

Parts of those properties searched Thursday have housed a metal recycling plant, a vehicle impound lot and a septic company since 1991.

Weeks before Parker's disappearance, the Quinlan Police Dept. arrested her on an outstanding warrant and impounded her 1980 Buick Skylark on the property that once housed the impound lot, arrest records indicate.

It is not clear if Parker ever returned for the car, which was registered in her name days later. 

Years after Parker's disappearance, friends and family members reported hearing rumors that she was buried on one of the properties searched Thursday. 

In November 2016, Haines interviewed Songer in Oklahoma and left without charging or publicly identifying him as a suspect in the case.

Songer has consistently denied involvement in Parker's disappearance. He has also offered to undergo a polygraph examination and encouraged law enforcement to search the former property to clear his name. 

Thursday was not the first time law enforcement visited the property. 

Sheriff's deputies visited the site years earlier but failed to find evidence they felt could justify a search, files obtained by KETR in 2017 indicated. 

Search Resumes For Missing Northeast Texas Woman

Mark-9, a search-and-rescue group based in Mesquite, TX, a suburb of Dallas, conducted the cadaver dog portion of Thursday's search. The organization offers free services for law enforcement seeking help with missing person cases. 

Thursday’s effort marked the fourth day of searches on properties connected to Parker in the Lake Tawakoni area.

In January, sheriff’s deputies led multiple dog search groups across land once owned by Parker’s parents and their neighbors in an area called Waco Bay Estate. A month later, they returned to one property to rule it out, Haines said at the time. 

Parker had three young children when she vanished in early 1991. Two of them were staying with her father in Waco Bay at the time.