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Cold case featured in IDOC card deck

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Indiana State Police continue to investigate the murder of Jennifer Stockrahm, which took place in Harmony, Feb. 12, 1997.
Playing cards come in several styles.

While a Homicide Playing Card Deck may sound morbid, it's real.

The Indiana Department of Correction recently unveiled the deck, which profiles 52 unsolved homicides or missing persons statewide.

Indiana State Police Public Information Officer and Recruiter Sgt. Joe Watts told The Brazil Times the idea of the decks originated after other states used cards as an effective tool to help solve cold cases.

"There are a small handful of states that have these kind of cards," Watts said. "One of our detectives introduced this idea to the (IDOC) and thought it might be a good idea."

Watts said IDOC prisoners that would like to purchase a deck of cards are given this deck.

The purpose of the deck of cards is to gather further information on cold cases that may have hit a brick wall.

"We got them out right around February," IDOC Public Information Officer Doug Garrison said. "That had been on the playing field for several months before."

A former Clay County resident is included in the deck of cards.

Jennifer Stockrahm was found dead in her vehicle Feb. 12, 1997. Jennifer, then 21, was found dead in the vehicle nearly 100 yards away from her mother's home. Initial reports indicated her body was burned in a vehicle fire. However, an autopsy report confirmed the cause of death was a bullet shot into her chest. Reports indicate that she was either placed in the vehicle or was killed inside the vehicle before it was set on fire.

Stockrahm's murder is still under investigation by the Indiana State Police Criminal Investigation Division at the ISP post in Terre Haute.

Jennifer Stockrahm
According to the IDOC website, Jennifer is image 24 of 51. The card states that on Feb. 12, 1997, "Jennifer Stockrahm, age 21, was shot to death and placed in her vehicle, a maroon 1988 Ford Escort, which was set on fire in Harmony, just outside of Brazil."

Stockrahm is the 7 of spades in the deck.

"These are cold case cards," Watts said. "From our district, any cold case we are working, especially the Stockrahm case, we want closure.

"Any lead we develop from any source is going to be a good thing. If this playing deck sparks some interest in someone calling in, then we're excited."

"We think the more people that get exposed to these cards in the facilities, the greater the likelihood that someone is going to provide information," Garrison said.

There are no other Clay County homicides listed in the IDOC Cold Case Homicide Playing Card Deck. In addition, the decks of cards are only available to IDOC inmates.

However, there are two from surrounding counties.

Former Parke County resident Mary Beth Grissmore, 26, was found in the trunk of her 1973 Ford Thunderbird on June 3, 1978, which was found parked at a motel parking lot in Whitehall, Ohio. Grissmore had disappeared from her residence in rural Parke County, north of Marshall. She is the 10 of spades.

In addition, former Owen County resident, Bryan Haltom is the 6 of hearts. On July 17, 1996, Haltom, then 19, was driving on United States 231 and State Road 46 near Spencer where he was involved in a road altercation with a small reddish vehicle. After the reddish vehicle stopped, Haltom approached the vehicle on foot and was shot and killed by its occupants.

Anyone with information regarding the cases is urged to call the ISP Hotline at 1-800-453-4756. The deck may be viewed at www.in.gov/idoc/2644.htm.

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I knew Jennifer and this is so sad, mind you her long time boyfriend was found dead shortly before this his death was ruled a suicide. I cant help but wonder if drugs were involved and who can do such a horrible thing to such a BEAUTIFUL young lady. RIP JENNIFER!

-- Posted by ibclean76@yahoo.com on Thu, Nov 20, 2008, at 7:09 AM

I feel bad for Jennifer's family-some which I do know.I know this is very devasting to them. I believe someday someone will be held responsible. If I remember correctly, Jennifer had turned in alot of people for a theft ring or so people thought. I don't see how people live with themselves knowing that they done this to her.

-- Posted by ape1 on Thu, Nov 20, 2008, at 9:52 AM

why does it see it takes our county 20 yrs to solve a case? just look at the ricky and tonya case. our police and sheriffs are jokes. heck look how long this one has gone on. it's a shame for her family.

-- Posted by smh on Thu, Nov 20, 2008, at 1:10 PM

Both departments have changed leadership several times in the last twenty years ~ & stop to think what technology we have now & what little technology we had then ~ tell me if both departments are such jokes ~ who will you call when you need help? We are fortunate in Clay County & Brazil to have such fine departments compared to other communities ~

-- Posted by karebabe on Thu, Nov 20, 2008, at 2:01 PM

-- Posted by pink on Thu, Nov 20, 2008, at 3:45 PM

They cant not solve cases with out evedience. Sometimes people wont come forward with what they now.

-- Posted by kd323 on Sun, Nov 30, 2008, at 9:15 AM

It doesn't always take 20 years for our local agencies to solved high profile cases.

The murders of Tanette Dickison and Cassie Harris (which also led to solving the death of the other girl in Terre Haute years before) were solved quickly.

Maybe one day the people who know something in this case will get a conscience and come forward and help the family of this young lady find peace concerning her death.

-- Posted by Cy on Sun, Nov 30, 2008, at 5:45 PM

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