During the early morning hours of October 13, 2018, 16-year-old Karlie Gusé disappeared from her home in Chalfant, California, where she lived with her dad and stepmother. Nobody heard her get out of bed and nobody heard her go out the front door, which was left ajar. She has not been seen since. For up-to-date information, read this Karlie Gusé wiki.
Karlie Gusé was last seen outside her home on Ponderosa Street, near White Mountain Estate Road in Chalfant, California, in the predawn hours of Saturday, October 13, 2018.
|About Karlie Gusé|
|Birth||May 13, 2002|
|Parents||Zachary Gusé (Father), Melissa Gusé (Stepmother), Lindsay Fairley (Mother)|
Karlie is a white female, 16 years old, 5’ 7”, 110 pounds, with blue eyes and dark blond hair.
Many pictures of Karlie show her with darker hair, but officials say it was lighter when she disappeared. It is thought she was wearing a white t-shirt with a logo on it, dark gray sweatpants, and Vans shoes when she disappeared.
Anyone with information on Karlie’s disappearance or whereabouts is urged to contact the Mono County Sheriff’s Office at 760-932-7549, option 7, or the National Center for Missing and Endangered Children at 800-843-5678 (800-THE-LOST).
Karlie Gusé: Missing Teen Beloved
At 16 years old, Karlie Lain Gusé is a typical teenager. A junior at Bishop Union High School, Karlie likes to dance, hang out with her boyfriend, Donald Arrowood III, and make money at her after-school job.
Karlie’s stepmother, Melissa Gusé, is an escrow assistant at a title company; Karlie works there part time. Karlie’s father, Zachary Gusé, 43, works in construction.
Melissa and Zac have two sons, ages 10 and 9, who live with the family.
Lindsay Fairley, 39, Karlie’s biological mother, and Zachary divorced when she was just two years old. Karlie initially lived with her mother, but moved in with her father and his second wife, in Bishop, California, when she was around 10 years old.
“Everybody knows Karlie. They love her,” said Fairley. “We were always really, really open. We were literally best friends. She could talk to me about anything. She is absolutely loved by everybody that knows her. She’s such a sweet girl. She’s funny.”
Karlie’s stepmother Melissa recalls that, in the beginning of October, Karlie was her typical happy self, no different than usual.
In August, Karlie and her family moved north of Bishop to the small town of Chalfant. Because Chalfant is just 20 minutes north of Bishop, Karlie was able to stay in the same school district.
Chalfant, California is a small community located in Mono County, near the Nevada border. It is surrounded by nature, being immediately east of the Sierra Nevada, west of the White Mountains, and north of Sequoia National Park and Death Valley National Park.
A Teenager Experimenting with Drugs
After school ended on Friday, October 12, Karlie told Melissa she was going to a high school football game. But she didn’t.
Instead, she went to a house party with her boyfriend, Donald Arrowood, 17. At the party, Karlie smoked marijuana…and she started to panic.
“She got scared of the music,” Arrowood said. “She got scared of me.”
At around 8:00 p.m., Karlie used her cellphone to call her stepmom. According to Melissa, Karlie “was frantic” and wanted her to pick her up from the party.
When Melissa got to the city of Bishop, she saw surprised to see Karlie running down the street. She was paranoid and disoriented.
“She was really pale, looked like a ghost. Her pupils were really dilated,” her stepmother said.
Karlie confirmed what Melissa already knew; that she was high. It wasn’t her first time.
Earlier in the year, for some unknown reason, Karlie started showing up to class high on marijuana. Her grades plummeted.
Concerned, Zac and Melissa confronted Karlie and told her she had to get her act together. After that, her grades improved and “she was getting better,” Zac said.
It was short lived.
Was Karlie Scared of Something or Someone?
When Melissa brought Karlie home on the night of October 12, her father could see that something was wrong. “She was scared of something,” he said. He tried talking to his daughter, to no avail.
According to Melissa, Karlie said she was going to bed and asked her stepmom to stay with her. But the agitated teen couldn’t sleep.
“She wanted to paint toenails,” Melissa recalled. “She wanted to read the Bible.”
Watching the out-of-control Karlie, Melissa decided to make it a learning lesson; she recorded audio of Karlie on the phone. Melissa wanted to play it back to Karlie and show her what kind of effect drugs had on her.
Melissa recorded Karlie for eight minutes. During the recording, Karlie said, “I really messed up today.” Melissa consoled Karlie, saying, “We all do things in life that we regret, drugs especially.”
An upset Karlie told Melissa, “I love you.”
Melissa, wanting to get some food into Karlie, gave her a salad, but the teen yelled out, “That’s the devil’s lettuce!”
Melissa consoled Karlie and suggested she get some sleep. Karlie was having none of it, “No, I don’t want to sleep. You’re going to kill me.”
“Why would I kill you?” Melissa replied. “That’s preposterous!”
The agitated teen replied, “I’m just thinking of all this demonic stuff,” she cried. “I can’t help it!”
What was in that marijuana to make Karlie act like this? It wasn’t her first time smoking pot.
Zac Gusé believes his daughter smoked something more than marijuana. Her weed “could’ve been laced with something else,” he said.
But what? Karlie’s boyfriend has insisted she only smoked marijuana. “She hadn’t smoked in a while,” he mused. “It could’ve triggered something.”
Karlie’s mom Lindsay Fairley, who was living in Yerington, Nevada at the time, suspects LSD was the culprit. An inquisitive Karlie had recently asked her birth mom about the drug, with Fairley warning her it was dangerous.
Later that evening, at around 9:00 p.m. Melissa said she fell asleep in Karlie’s bed with her, to ensure she was OK.
The next morning, when Melissa woke up, Karlie was gone.
Her family has not seen her since.
What Happened to Karlie? Melissa’s Changing Story
The strange disappearance of Karlie Gusé is not as straightforward as one would expect. Her stepmother, Melissa, was the last person to see her, but her story of their last night together has changed in many ways. This begs the question…why?
Initially, Melissa said she woke up at around 5:45 on the morning of October 13 and did what she normally did at that hour: opened her kids’ doors and said good morning. She said when she checked in on Karlie, she was sound asleep in her bed.
Melissa then went back to sleep and woke up again sometime between 7:15 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. She walked into her stepdaughter’s room to see how she was feeling. Karlie was gone. Melissa checked the house for her. Nothing.
When Melissa went back into the bedroom to tell her husband that their daughter was not there, he seemed puzzled and asked what she meant.
Melissa said. “She’s gone. She’s not in her room. She’s not outside. She’s not in the backyard. She’s not anywhere.”
The pair thought Karlie maybe went for a walk. They got into their cars and drove around town to find her. There was, Zac said, no cause for alarm. They thought they’d find her walking down the road. But after two hours of searching, they became increasingly concerned for her safety.
Melissa and Zac returned home at around 9:30 a.m. and called Karlie’s birth mom, to tell her that her daughter was missing. Zac then called the Mono County Sheriff’s Office and filed a missing persons report.
Deputies arrived at their home a few hours later and began talking to neighbors to see if they’d seen anything.
Days later, Melissa’s recollection of that night changed drastically. In the second version of events, Melissa never left Karlie’s side. When she woke up at 5:45 a.m., she saw Karlie asleep in the bed next to her.
Instead of going through with her usual routine of checking in on her kids, she fell back to sleep in Karlie’s bed. She woke up sometime between 7:15 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. and noticed Karlie was gone.
When asked about the startling inconsistencies in her narrative, Melissa said she been stricken with grief and worry. Those emotions, it seems, made her mis-remember what happened that fateful morning.
Melissa has brushed off any criticism of her changing story line and has stressed that all she wants is for Karlie to come home.
What happened in the house that morning is open for debate.
What isn’t, is that three witnesses saw Karlie on Ponderosa Street that morning, near White Mountain Estate Road in Chalfant.
Three witnesses came forward to say they saw Karlie in the early morning hours of October 13.
Richard Eddy, 78, is a retired Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department employee who lives down the street from the Gusé family.
Between 6:30 a.m. and 6:45 a.m., Eddy was sipping coffee and relaxing in his Jacuzzi. He looked out the window of the enclosed room and saw a tall, slender female with long hair walk by.
“She was looking up, looking around at the sky,” he said.
Two other witnesses would tell the Mono County Sheriff’s Office that they saw Karlie that morning near White Mountain Estates Road and Highway 6.
Route 6, also known as the Grand Army of The Republic Highway, is a major highway that runs east-northeast from Bishop, California to Provincetown, Massachusetts.
Combined, the witness sightings make up the only solid lead police have.
An Intensive Search
Did Karlie run away and hitchhike her way across America? Was she abducted? Did she get lost in the surrounding mountains?
Karlie left that morning with nothing but the clothes on her back. She left her cellphone and glasses behind. She was wearing running shoes, a white t-shirt, and gray sweatpants. Not the best attire to weather temperatures hovering in the low 40s. And without her cellphone or bank card, authorities have no way of tracking her.
While police were conducting initial interviews, Karlie’s mom, Lindsay Fairley, was on the road, driving in from Nevada.
“I arrived nine hours after she had gone missing,” Fairley said. “Of course, I was in shambles. I couldn’t stop shaking. Literally, my body was paralyzed.”
Authorities conducted a week-long search for the missing teen, but came up empty-handed.
According to Sgt. Seth Clark, the search effort involved multiple helicopters, six scent dogs, and approximately 60 personnel, including Inyo Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, the United States Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, California Highway Patrol, CalTrans, the California National Guard, and the El Dorado Sheriff’s Office.
“The biggest clue in this case is that there’s no clue,” Sgt. Seth Clark said. “We think Karlie may still be out there.”
In an October 20 Facebook post, the Mono County Sheriff’s Office said, it was following all leads and tips.
“We enlisted the assistance of many resources in our search for Karlie. We interviewed all family and friends. For several days we conducted a search of the surrounding high desert, utilizing helicopters, scent dogs, off-road vehicles, and foot patrol. We are scouring her social media and electronic devices. Her family is fully cooperative, and we are in regular contact with them.”
An October 25 post by the Mono County Sheriff’s Office stated: “The ground search has concluded. For a week we searched on foot, in all-terrain vehicles, by helicopter, and with scent dogs. We searched both during the day and with heat-sensing equipment at night. We searched for miles in all directions.”
Mom & Stepmom’s Diverging Opinions
The sheriff’s office is treating the incident as a missing person case. In a Facebook post, they stated that there’s “no evidence of an abduction or any other crime.” Not everyone believes that though.
What Lindsay Fairley Thinks Happened to Karlie
For starters, Fairley does not believe her daughter was abducted. It is more likely, she believes, that she is lost.
In a now private Facebook post from October 14, the day after her daughter went missing, she wrote, “Dogs are out searching but the wind is hindering their search. Her dad found her shoe prints up in the mountains. Please keep my precious girl in your prayers. I’m on the verge of being tranquilized.”
Fairley wrote in a later Facebook post, in all caps: “PLEASE LEAVE ALL SPECULATIONS THAT MY DAUGHTER Karlie Guse WAS ABDUCTED! THAT HAS NOT BEEN CONFIRMED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT! PLEASE LEAVE ALL SPECULATIONS FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT AT THIS TIME, AS SPECULATIONS CAN HINDER THEIR INVESTIGATION! THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR CONTINUED PRAYERS FOR MY BABY GIRLS SAFE RETURN.”
What Melissa Gusé Thinks Happened to Karlie
Melissa seems to be the one person holding on to the abduction theory.
“Just the thought of her going to the highway,” said Melissa. “It makes me feel like somebody just happened to be driving by and grabbed her.”
In a now deleted or private Facebook video that Melissa posted on October 15, she does not discuss what happened the day Karlie vanished or why she would be out on a walk at 6:30 a.m.
“I know everybody has so many questions. ‘Why did she leave? Where did she go? What’s wrong?’ I’m just concerned that she’s just gone. And that needs to be the focus. If you know me and you know Karlie, you know she would never do this. This is not the person who would just leave her family.”
“Search and rescue has looked everywhere. And you know, Highway 6 goes all the way to Massachusetts. So, I don’t want to think that way, but it’s really hard to be the parent and be 48 hours in and not think that.”
Other Theories? Was Karlie Kidnapped or Murdered?
Zac believes, given Karlie’s recent troubles, it’s possible that she ran away. “Maybe’s there’s things she kept from us. Who knows?”
Or is there a serial killer at work? There’s also speculation that Karlie’s disappearance could be linked to the case of missing teen Madelyn Lingenfelter, 19. She parked her car along Mount Rose Highway near Reno on September 19, but hasn’t been seen since.
Lindsay Fairley Appears on A&E’s Live PD
On October 27, the story of missing teen Karlie Gusé was featured on A&E’s Live PD.
When asked by the interviewer what she would say to Karlie if she was watching the show, a distraught Lindsay Fairley said, “Baby girl there’s nothing you can’t say to me or call out to me…please Karlie, I miss you, I love you. I just keep praying baby you’re going to come home.”
— Live PD on A&E (@OfficialLivePD) October 28, 2018
Cracks Begin to Appear within the Family?
Dealing with a missing daughter, or any family member, is emotionally devastating and obviously very stressful. And, in many cases, family relationships can begin to fray. The Gusé family is no exception.
On November 7, 2018, Lindsay made it known on Facebook what she thinks of Melissa’s changing story.
Ten days later, on November 17, 2018, Lindsay took another jab at Melissa, “Who is ready for the polygraphs?!?! Hook me up, my story won’t change.
Lindsay is also not a fan of the Mono County Sheriff’s Office and how that team is handling the case.
It is clear though, from family Facebook posts, that everyone’s thoughts are squarely on finding Karlie.
In a November 23 Facebook post, Karlie’s boyfriend, Donald Arrowood III, wrote, “I Wish I could have spent today with you my baby gurl, my soul mate, my forever and always, the love of my life, my Best Friend, I can’t wait for the moment I get to hold you in my arms and never let go again.” [sic]
On November 22, Lindsay Fairley wrote:
Dearest Karlie, if I could give you one thing in life, it would be the ability to see yourself through my eyes. Only then would you realize just how absolutely amazing you really are! Today is harder than some because you’re not here to enjoy dinner with us. I pray through the mighty name of Jesus Christ that you’re being cared for and you’re safe and without harm. Through all of this sadness comes gratefulness and I am so very blessed and thankful for the wonderful people reaching out to us. Karlie you are SO LOVED by the entire world and I just want some hope that you’re okay baby girl. When you feel weak sweetie, fall to those knees and pray.
And in a November 14 Facebook post, Melissa Gusé wrote:
Every second, of every minute that goes by we are thinking about you Karlie. We can’t believe it has been over a month now. We love you sooo much and we are lost without you. We hope you are safe, warm, and have a full belly wherever you may be. And no that no matter what you can just come home and we are here for you. We just want you back and won’t stop until we find you. We pray that you will see this or someone who knows where you are will. We love you Kar Bar. Please come home.
The Gusé family is offering a $10,000 reward for the safe return of Karlie Gusé.
If you have seen Karlie or have any information regarding her whereabouts, call the Mono County Sheriff’s Office at 760-932-7549, option 7, or the National Center for Missing and Endangered Children at 800-843-5678 (800-THE-LOST).
You can also send tips in anonymously by e-mail at [email protected] or through the form, no e-mail required, on the official Bring Karlie Home tipline.