Was the McStay’s Isuzu Trooper spotted in the High Desert a hoax?

A Craigslist ad was posted late last year, that I wrote about back in January 2013, seeking information on a sighting of a vehicle that looked similar to Joseph and Summer McStay’s Isuzu Trooper in the High Desert area of California.   The High Desert area is an unofficial area of northeast of the San Gabriel Mountains, which includes Victorville where the skeletal remains of Joseph and Summer and probably their two children were found.

It is unknown who posted that ad or where they got the the information that the McStay vehicle was seen in that area shortly after they disappeared.

According to the ad the person who was driving the car was not a family member and although there were two child cars seats in the back, there were no children with them.

The person or persons that posted the ad stated they were seeking confirmation of the sighting, although they also stated they were aware that whoever was driving the McStay vehicle may have actually been driving another white Isuzu Trooper and added two car seats in the back to make it look like the McStay vehicle, in other words, committing a hoax.

“If you know where the hoax vehicle was obtained, please come forward.  We need information and/or confirmation,” the ad read.

Now that Joseph and Summer’s remains have been located in Victorville, is there a possibility that the car was not a hoax, but someone actually driving the vehicle away from the scene of the crime?

So, much attention was given to the family crossing the border after their car was found parked near there, that if anyone saw the vehicle near Victorville, they would have probably dismissed the thought it was even them.

I am assuming that nothing came of the Craigslist ad and the poster never received any tips because if they had I would like to think that the investigation would have gone to that area, but maybe not, as even though Joseph and Summer’s cell phones pinged near the Old Bonsall Bridge, no search was done in that area.

Hopefully, whoever received the information that compelled them to post the ad will  come forward and reveal their source.

About Missing Persons Admin 4641 Articles

Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America.

7 Comments

  1. Jerrie, that ad is absolutely creepy. Have you informed the police about the ad? I'm unsure as to how craigslist works but I assume that you have to pay to post an ad. Perhaps LE (now that SB is handling in the case instead of SD, they might actually follow up on it) can backtrack the credit card used to place the ad and therefore find the poster.

    My heart goes out to the McStay family. This is such a tragedy. I can only hope they are able to get justice. I pray that LE is able to find the persons responsible for this heinous act.

  2. By the way, I meant the ad is creepy because it was prophetic, not that the ad itself was creepy. It's also because the poster had a viable tip, as we now know, but was obviously never able to get follow up or confirmation.

  3. The ads on Craigslist are always free, but in order to post an ad you have to provide an email address and password. That email address can be traced back by Craigslist.

  4. It could definitely have been someone from Craigslist. It's just odd that someone ran a search about entering to Mexico (a search that was either done by a family member looking for a future vaca, or planted there by the killer a week before the murders) and then their car was parked by the border. It just seems like those things could both be connected, as though this crime was committed by someone known to the family as opposed to a stranger.