Kym L. Pasqualini is the founder and former CEO of Nation's Missing Children Organization and National Center for Missing Adults.
Adrienne Salinas, 19, was a beautiful Gateway College student who vanished in the early morning hours of June 15, 2013. Her father reported her missing on Father’s Day, June 16, 2013.
According to Tempe Police, Salinas and her roommates threw a party at their apartment on Hardy Drive and 5th Street in Tempe on June 15.
After getting into an argument, Salinas and her boyfriend left the party early. Both planned on going to his home in Scottsdale. However, her boyfriend went home alone. Not much later, Salinas decided she would drive herself to her boyfriend’s home, packed a bag, and left her apartment.
On her way, she crashed her car along the Rio Salado Parkway and Ash Avenue curve not far from her home. She had flattened both tires on the driver’s side but managed to drive the car to Brown Street where she parked and walked approximately one block back to her apartment.
Police confirmed Salinas had ditched her vehicle, walked back home, changed her clothing, then called a cab to pick her up at an AM/PM convenience store about a quarter-mile away from her apartment.
According to friends, she left her purse and keys at her apartment.
When the taxi arrived at the convenience store at 4:53 a.m., the taxi driver called Salinas and she responded she was on her way. She proceeded to walk along the quarter-mile stretch to the convenience store but vanished before she made it to the taxi.
At 5:07 a.m., 14 minutes after the initial call from the cab driver, her phone shut off.
Police stated Salinas disappeared while walking on Hardy Drive between 5th Street and University Drive, in Tempe.
A surveillance camera caught a woman resembling Salinas walking near the corner of Hardy and University Drive. She walked through an O’Reilly Auto Parts parking lot at 4:52 a.m. In the footage, she seemed to be followed by a dark four-door vehicle driving through the same lot approximately two minutes later. The vehicle remains unidentified.
Cell phone records show Salinas’s boyfriend had 11 missed calls from Salinas at 4:15 a.m. to include a voicemail stating she was on her way to his home.
The boyfriend has been very cooperative and was cleared through cell phone records, also passing several lie detectors tests.
The taxi driver was also cleared and has never been a suspect.
A Victim of Opportunity?
A young girl walking alone on a hot June night in 2013, possibly there was someone else nearby, someone evil.
“When you have a case like this there will be nights and nights and nights that you don’t sleep. You only think about the case. What we have done, what we could do, and what should we have done,” Detective Alan Akey, told News 15 in an exclusive interview, “Adrienne Salinas found dead 4 years ago, case remains unsolved.”
“Was it a crime of opportunity or was it something a little more where somebody who had a little more interest in her, was paying a little more attention to her and took that opportunity?” asked Detective Akey.
According to published freelance journalist Keen Azariah, she may have crossed paths with “ultimate evil” that fateful night.
After the Storm
In July 2013, hard rainfall turned normally bone-dry Arizona canals, washes and riverbeds into raging rivers of mud.
On August 9, 2013, Apache Junction resident Dan Kelly decided to check his property after the flooding. His land borders Lost Dutchman Boulevard and Weekes Wash. It was here that he found the decomposing remains of Salinas, in a desert wash, approximately 30-miles away from where she had vanished in Tempe.
Police believe Salinas’s body was dumped elsewhere and was later washed downstream to the location she was found.
When the Tempe Police Department released the heavily redacted autopsy report, the skeletal chart was not included. As reported in the New Times, "Much desiccated skin and tissue are present, as is a small patch of hair adhering to what appears to be desiccated skin of the neck." The information released in the autopsy reports does not include any information about a skull, hands, or clothing.
In fact, the autopsy report specifically indicates that Salinas was identified through the identification of her thorax (between neck and abdomen), in addition to DNA identification.
The missing information makes one suspect she might have been decapitated either by human hands or by the natural process of decomposition and exposure to harsh elements of rushing water, followed by intense heat and potential animal scavenging.
If authorities know the cause of death, they have not released it.
Was Salinas a victim of opportunity? It just so happens, a monster was close by.
Bryan Patrick Miller, The Arizona Zombie Hunter
Bryan Patrick Miller is myriad of things in his social media profile, a man obsessed with Steampunk and role-play, and driving a decommissioned police cruiser and calls himself the “Zombie Hunter.” He is also an alleged serial killer.
Miller is currently being held in a Phoenix jail for his DNA confirmed involvement in the cold-case murder, decapitation, and evisceration of Angela Brosso, 22, and the stabbing and mutilation murder of Melanie Bernas, 17, ten months apart, while riding their bikes along a North Phoenix canal, in 1992.
In the Vicinity
According to Facebook posts, Miller just so happened to be at a friend’s party in Tempe on Saturday, June 15th, near where Salinas went missing.
According to “Gone by Dawn: The Disappearance of Adrienne Salinas,” by Keen Azariah, a published freelance journalist and former friend of Miller, not only was Miller at a party within one mile of Salinas’s home, but he had also planned on going on a morning hike. Miller had also posted this information on Facebook.
Dark Unidentified Vehicle
Some may think it’s a jump, but Miller owned a dark gray Ford Focus hatchback and a matte black Ford Escort. He sold the Focus in September 2013 and purchased a 2007 Ford Interceptor that he transformed into a creepy police car, complete with lights on top. On the back was the name “Zombie Hunter,” his alter ego.
When police made the arrested Miller at his job at Amazon, for the murders of Brosso and Bernas, they simultaneously served a search warrant on his home. Police found the matte black Escort under a black tarp hidden in the backyard of his North Phoenix residence.
While that is not proof that Miller abducted Salinas, we must also take into consideration that Miller also worked at the Arizona Renaissance Festival in Apache Junction near where Salinas was found, attended Steampunk events at Goldfield Ghost Town, and even selected the area to do some professional photo shoots.
Though the inferences of a connection between Miller and Salinas are circumstantial, the leap continues to get shorter.
For those who know Bryan personally, it becomes even more possible to believe he was capable of abducting a young woman. He was known for collecting realistic photographs of dead bodies, posting cannibalistic connotations on Facebook, to include pictures of decapitated and mutilated women.
One More Coincidence?
And if all of this were not enough, Miller lived less than a mile from Brandy Myers who has been missing for over 25 years.
Brandy Myers had gone out on the afternoon of May 26, 1992, to go door to door raising money for her school. She never returned home.
Myers’s younger sister Kristin Thelen recalled walking with her big sister on their way to school and back, on a route that took them right by Miller’s house each day.
“Ultimately, we have another disappearance of a young girl, same kind of age and time frame, and very close proximity to his home," said Sgt. Trent Crump with Phoenix Police Department. "He very quickly became an investigative lead."
Police have a statement from Miller’s wife of eight years. She tells about a terrifying existence with a man fascinated by porn, S&M bondage, the use of knives, straight pins and boasting. She claims Miller confessed that he had killed before and mentioned a time when a little girl with developmental disabilities came to his house raising money for her school. He told his ex-wife he abducted her inside, stabbed Brandy Myers, then cut her throat.
Miller then told his wife he dismembered the little girl and dumped her in the garbage that was picked up the following day in 1992. It so happens Brandy Myers did have diminished mental capacity.
Miller has pleaded “not guilty” in the murders of Brosso and Bernas. Miller would be quick to say his being near where women and little girls vanishing is “just coincidence.” Others would say there are too many coincidences to dismiss.
A $20,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest and convictions of the individual(s) responsible for the murder of Adrienne Salinas. Call Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.
© 2018 Kym L Pasqualini
Suzie from Carson City on September 16, 2019:
Read the entire article....Thank you! This is definitely a mind-bending mystery. No one should rest until this case is solved. As always, there are individuals who KNOW what happened to this young woman. Sooner or later, the murderer will be exposed. As sad and unacceptable as it is, evil exists all around us at all times. Evil can only win when and if GOOD men do nothing.
My heart breaks for her family.
Kym L Pasqualini (author) from Carefree, AZ on September 16, 2019:
Paula, Thank you so much for the comment. Here is a really great article that is fairly recent. https://www.12news.com/article/news/investigations...
Suzie from Carson City on September 11, 2019:
Hello, Kym....All due respect to the victim, I became quickly confused and a bit dubious about some of the goings-on...? Is anything known about whether Adriennne was quite drunk or high that night? I mean, how many people rack their car up and simply walk away and abandon it with 2 flats? Please....that in itself is so unbelievable, were she in her right mind., Next curious issue....she packs a bag but leaves her purse and keys? Women do not leave their purses anywhere when they leave to go somewhere. Another reason I ask about her state of sobriety or drunkenness....I just know I'd have to be half-conscious to leave my purse behind if I planned on staying somewhere over night.
How desperate was she to get to her boyfriend's ...whom, by the way, she had just had a fight with?
I give up. The rest of this story is certainly bizarre with creepy characters to go along.
What's the update if any on this? Good story, even though it's a crazy one!! Peace, Paula