BELTON, Mo. - An NBC Action News investigation has uncovered new evidence in the Kara Kopetsky case, including a possible confession and disputed timeline.
There are two parts of this investigation. Click here to see the story on the possible confession.
“It just solidifies what I had already suspected,” said Kara’s mom, Rhonda Beckford. “Which is they're not doing their job. They're not trying to find Kara.”
In addition to a reported confession, the NBC Action News investigation identified a box of Kara’s possessions turned in to police two years after her disappearance, a report that Belton police did not return calls about suspicious behavior the day after she vanished, an official report that puts Kara’s initial disappearance two days earlier than previously reported, and other evidence never made public until now.
“This amount of compelling information coming out in a news investigation rather than a police investigation is very troubling,” said Retired FBI Agent Michael Tabman after he reviewed what NBC Action News Investigators uncovered.
Kara Kopetsky vanished shortly after surveillance cameras captured her walking out of Belton High School about 10:00 a.m on Friday, May 4, 2007.
She was only 17.
When did Kara really disappear: May 2, 2007 or May 4, 2007?
Kara’s mother was shocked to learn that Belton Police records put her daughter’s initial disappearance on May 2, 2007—two days earlier than she was publically reported missing.
According to the Belton police report obtained by the Investigators, when Rhonda was contacted on May 4, 2007 regarding the disappearance of her daughter, she told detectives that Kara “has, in fact, been missing since May 2, 2007” and that she believed Kara “is with the suspect willingly and is not being held against her will.”
However Rhonda said the documentation is erroneous. “It essentially says I thought my daughter was a runaway, when I did not think that,” Beckford said. “I felt that her life was in danger, or I would not have called the police and reported her missing.”
“I just don't know what Belton thinks that they're doing,” Rhonda said. “It's all lies and this is the first time we've seen the report. Why are we just now seeing this?”
Belton Police Chief James Person declined our requests for an interview, but issued a statement standing by the report.
“There is no discrepancy in our police reports,” Person wrote. “They are dated and time stamped, and have not changed since the original report was written 4 1/2 years ago.”
The Belton report also said police contacted the family by phone, but the family said that never happened.
Rhonda emphasized that the family saw Kara the morning of May 4, 2007 and would have had no reason to say she’d already been missing for two days.