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Unsolved: The disappearance of Beth Miller

Beth Miller had just turned 14 the day she went jogging in the small mountain town west of Denver.  

Credit: KUSA
Beth Miller disappeared on Aug. 16, 1983. She was 14 years old. Investigators have not found out who or what led to her disappearance, but they aren't giving up hope.

All this week, we're looking at Colorado Cold Cases during our 6 a.m. show. You can read about Monday's cold case here: http://on9news.tv/2jUSoge

IDAHO SPRINGS – Beth Miller had just turned 14 the day she went jogging in the small mountain town west of Denver.

She usually jogged with her sister, but not on this day. It was Aug. 16, 1983. Beth never came home, and hasn’t been seen since.

Some witnesses saw her talking to a man in a red pickup truck, but police never found the right truck. In the days and weeks that followed, hundreds of volunteers on foot and horseback searched for her. Her dad was on TV pleading for information.

It didn’t help.

To this day, no one knows what happened to Beth Miller, even though there have been a ton of tips, theories, suspects and sightings. None has panned out. But investigators are not giving up.

Details of the case are stored in dozens of case files at the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. They include several men arrested over the years for murder or attacks on teens. One of the men's girlfriend was overheard by a witness talking about disposing of Beth’s body.

Investigators followed the leads, but nothing turned out. The police were so desperate at the beginning, they contacted psychics, who though she was being held against her will somewhere nearby. They couldn’t find her. Theories from people around the country poured in as the story gained traction, but again nothing could be proven.

Clear Creek County Undersheriff Bruce Snelling says they don’t think Beth is still alive, but they don’t know for sure. Without a sighting or a body, finding the person responsible will be difficult.

In 2007, a grand jury issued a scathing report, accusing law enforcement of a “clear lack of professionalism” in the case.

"We are not perfect in what we do," Snelling said. "We still to this day make some mistakes, some errors. They’re certainly not done intentionally, they’re just errors that occur. So with that being said, I’ll just tell you at the time they did the best they could.”

Eleven years after Beth Miller disappeared, her family went to court to get a judge to declare her legally dead. Her parents are split up, her siblings have moved on. But they would love to know who is responsible for what happened to Beth.

“I can just tell you that really in by heart of hearts what I have to believe is that if we just keep after it, eventually we’ll find that missing piece of the puzzle, that can put the rest of it together for us," Snelling said.


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