There is a lot of speculations around the disappearance of Jessica Stacks on January 1, 2021. I am going to go over the story and break it down for you so you have a better understanding what is going with this case. Below is the video of this story:
Jessica Stacks, 28, is missing from Mississippi. Jessica who is from the New Albany area was last seen on the morning of Jan 1, 2021 near County Road 46. She was getting in a boat in the Tallahatchie River to head downstream with her boyfriend, Jerry Wayne Baggett.
Union County Sheriff Edwards told DJ Journal that Jessica and Baggett were heading to higher water. Jessica got out of the boat to walk back. Back where, I don’t know as he did not specify. Was he talking about walking back to the car, walking back home, or just walking back into the woods?
After some research I found where Baggett said “that after about two hours in the river, Jessica got out at the north river bank in the direction of State Highway 30,” reports NBC News.
More research and I found that evidently that the story had changed or had become more specific and now we are told Jessica got out of the boat to look for a wild pig, according to media reports.
“When the river water is high, people sometimes see if they can catch deer or hogs that have been pushed to higher ground, said Edwards.” Which leads me to believe that he believes Jerry’s story. The sheriff has said there was no foul play in this case.
Anyone that is raised in the south knows not to go after a wild pig or hog, without personal protection. They are unpredictable animals that will chase after you, if you happen upon them, just walking in the woods.
“You know, sometimes when the river is high people will get in boats and float down the river to catch deer or hogs and shoot them,” Edwards told media. “That’s what they were doing.”
Once again, not much specifics, but is Edwards talking about random shooting of animals for fun and not hunting? Is he implying that Jessica and Jerry were heading to an area they believed to have hogs and deer so they could randomly shoot them for fun?
The reason I bring this up, is because if they were actually going to do that for food, I would think they would bring more supplies. Something to gut the animal, or something to help carry the animal on to the boat after killing it. Although, if the animal was smaller, they could likely get it to the boat if they both carried it. Further research and I was able to sort out what they did have (read further down to see).
Then I ran across a story by NEMISS that talked more about how Jessica got separated from Jerry:
“Stacks got out of the boat, saying she intended to walk out of the river bottom, according to what the sheriff was told.
“Baggett continued down the river at least a couple of miles before getting out on the opposite side of the river,” Edwards said. “He ended up calling his son and they said for him to stay where he was and they would come get him,” he said. “They told him to holler and yell and they would find him.”
When they found Baggett, it became apparent that Stacks was missing.”
At this point we do not know if the “Son” was the same person that Jessica gave her phone to.
Purse and Keys
It’s been reported that Jessica left her purse and keys in the boat. Many who have gone in boats before know not to take your purse and keys, just in case you end up in the water. I made that mistake the first time I went on a boat. I didn’t want to leave it in the car and needed to lock up the vehicle, so brought both with me. Now I leave the purse behind and put the keys in a waterproof bag. Is it possible that Jessica was inexperienced with boating and didn’t think before she left he house and brought her keys and purse with her?
Her purse and keys were found in the boat, but where is the phone? Well, according to Sheriff Edwards he told Dateline that Jessica’s cell phone was later turned in by an individual who stated that he had it because Jessica and Baggett had planned to call him on it to be picked up at the end of their boating trip that day. Evidently, this is the same man that helped them launch the boat.
A coat believed to belong to Jessica has been found. I have not heard if family or Jerry have examined the coat to verify that it was actually hers or not. Carla Jones, Jessica’s cousin stated to DJ Journal, “Stacks left several footprints behind near the river…Her boots were later found; they had been cut off her. Her coat and gloves were found near her boots.”
Her boots were found cut off her? Why were they cut off and does this mean that Jessica had a knife with her?
Jerry himself posted this response:
Although it was reported that Jessica was going towards the direction of Hwy 30 west, Jerry says this:
The boat did not have a motor. The boat was found about a mile upriver from the Rocky Ford Bridge at Etta. The boat was first launced into the river near the County Road 46 bridge at daybreak.
This is probably the most confusing detail that took me a while to find. Jerry did have a gun.
It is mentioned here at this story, “Baggett is said to have had a hunting gun when he and Stacks launched into the River on Jan. 1.”
What where they going to do with the hogs after they found them? An average female hogs weighs 150 pounds. After they shot it, were they going to gut it, then drag it to a boat or was it their intention to just shoot it and leave it there?
Jessica was reported missing around 10 p.m. that same day. I am wondering why so late. If someone is missing in the woods, you would want to call the Police before the sun went down and be there to show them where she got out of the boat and which direction she was heading. .
So, if someone was going to pick them up, then how did they get there? Did that same person drop them off? Maybe someone let them borrow the boat and took them and the boat to the river and helped them launch it.
The police have done a lot to search for Jessica using ever bit of technology and manpower that had available, but she has not been found. Which leads me back to the question I had earlier. Is she even in this area? Evidently, the sheriff believes so, as personnel, volunteers, and technology have been used to search for her in that area. There must be a reason, some evidence that assures him she was in that area. Was it possible the person that helped put the boat in the water? That person could certainly verify if Jessica was with Jerry or not that day.
Suspicious story or not?
Cathy Story seems to be suspicious about the whole floating down the river to look for hogs story, too as she told Dateline, “She didn’t just walk away and if she was hurt, we would’ve found her. Someone did something to her. I know it.”
But, Sheriff Edwards seems to think everything is on the up and up, “Yesterday, the water was out and it appears when she got out she was surrounded by water and maybe didn’t realize that was going to be the case,” the sheriff said. “Maybe she couldn’t cross, it was too deep. There is a very deep dragline ditch between there and road, and if it were filled with water you wouldn’t know how deep it was until you stepped in it.”
So, as you can see I and many on social media have a lot of questions on this case. Is there so much left out because media has not asked a lot of questions? Likely. It has taken more than several weeks before more of this story has come out and more questions have been addressed.
Unless, I talk with the family directly, and I have reached out to them, I only have what the sheriff has said to the media, along with quotes from close family members, and Jerry.
It could turn out that event was a spontaneous trip that Jessica and Jerry thought would be fun to do and tragedy struck because of their lack of experience and knowledge. If so, suspicion should be changed to sympathy.
Jessica is described as being 5’4” tall, weighs 110-125 lbs and has blond hair and green eyes. She has multiple tattoos, including a puzzle piece with the name Cobie, and the name Brayden.
Anyone with information on Jessica’s whereabouts is asked to call the Union County Sheriff’s Office at 662-534-1943.
You might find this video informative. It is a group that went deer and hog hunting on Jan 2, in Mississippi. Go to the 20 mark for the hog. I am not sure of their location in Mississippi, but it was pouring rain.