Jim Pitzen first met his wife Amy while at a party. They enjoyed a mutual attraction, and decided to try and pursue a long-distance relationship. This went on for around a year before the couple moved closer to one another and ultimately decided to get married. They settled down in Aurora, Illinois.
Amy admittedly had issues with depression, but Jim was sure his love could push her towards happiness. Amy’s depression lead to ups and downs in the relationship, with the downward spikes being quite serious at times. For instance, one day Amy took too many pills and ended up out on a cliff – ultimately falling off after she passed out. She was not seriously injured and a year later the couple was blessed with a baby boy they named Timmothy. The extra “M” was added to make his name different.
Timmothy’s birth only briefly quelled Amy’s feelings and soon she was acting out as the couple argued over finances, as well as Amy’s habits of traveling around with her friends. She threatened to divorce Jim, but admitted that she feared doing so because she may lose custody of her son due to her depression being considered a mental illness.
On May 11th, 2011 Amy went to her son’s elementary school and told the officials there was a family emergency and she had to check her son out early. She then took her son with her as she had her vehicle fixed at a local car shop. The mother and son visited a zoo while the mechanic did his work. They then headed for a resort in Gurnee, Illinois. By this time Jim realized that his son and wife were missing and alerted the police after his wife did not answer repeated attempts to call her cell phone.
The following morning Amy drove her son to Wisconsin Dells, a popular tourist spot north of Illinois. While there, Amy called her relatives and told them she and her son were enjoying themselves. The boy could be heard talking in the background and sounded fine. Several cameras caught the mother and son as they walked around various businesses.
That day Amy drove back to Illinois. She was spotted in several small towns, apparently without her child. She ended up in a Rockford motel late in the night. In her motel room Amy intentionally overdosed on pills while also slashing her neck and wrists. Motel employees found her dead body shortly after noon the following day. Timmothy’s clothes, toys and car seat were missing. A pair of letters arrived to Amy’s mother and a friend a day later – they stated that Timmothy was with people who would care for him, and that he will never be found.
Slowly, the pieces of the case started to come together for the police. The missing car seat turned up in Wooster, Ohio where it had been left at Timmothy’s grandmother’s house a week earlier.
The knife that Amy used to kill herself was tested and the blood proved to only belong to her. The SUV she had been driving was next looked into. Blood was found in the backseat that proved to have come from Timmothy – however one of his relatives believed it came from the child getting a nosebleed months earlier.
The SUV’s body was clearly dirty, and the undercarriage revealed the remnants of tall grass and weeds that had apparently been driven over recently. There was also soil evidence that a gravel road had been driven on. Other soil residue lead investigators to believe that a stream or river may have been near the meadow where they think the SUV drove through. Several locations in Illinois were pinpointed as areas of interest in the search for Timmothy. The investigators assumed the child was killed and dumped in a remote area.
Amy had taken several trips secretly in the previous few months before her death, and the police think she visited the areas where she ultimately journeyed to on her final road trip. Amy’s computer revealed that she had a secret email account for at least four years prior to her death. The emails contained no information that would be useful in determining what became of Timmothy.
Jim was baffled by the sudden turn of events in his family’s life and was unable to offer any real clues as to where Amy may have dropped Timmothy off, or with whom. Amy’s family members all eagerly participated in the police search effort, and were willing to answer any questions thrown their way. The investigators have not pointed towards any of them as persons of interest in Timmothy’s disappearance.
Amy’s cell phone was not in the motel with her when she died. It was found along a highway several years later, but provided no additional clues to the case. A search of the area the phone was found in also failed to bring forth any new information.
The case was presented on several cable crime shows, but that failed to spring forth any leads. As of this writing, the fate of Timmothy remains unknown, and he is officially listed as being missing and endangered.
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