Still Missing, Still Searching-The Story of Toni Sharpless

Written by Sarah Garner

Over a year has gone by and she has yet to reappear.

In a case that is still being investigated, Toni Lee Sharpless, a 29-year-old nurse at Lancaster General, vanished.

A television drama recounting the disappearance of this local resident is planned for February.

The last time anyone saw her was last August in Lower Marion when her and a friend went to a club and then to a party at Willie Green’s home, a former Philadelphia 76ers basketball player.

Sharpless left the party after making an unpleasant remark to Green and drove away with her friend who she later kicked out of the car for being upset about what had happened.

Green was later cleared by police of any involvement.

“I search for her on a daily basis,” said Eileen Law, in a recent interview in Lancaster newspapers.

Law is the private detective that took her case. “I do absolutely believe she’s alive,” said Law.

About a month after she disappeared, a camera on a parked police car in Camden, New Jersey spotted a car with Sharpless’ license plate. Investigators on her case was not notified until days later.

They then sent Camden police and New Jersey State Police to the area where her plate was spotted and did a scope out of the entire area.

“They did a lot of work, going through neighborhoods, in hopes of finding it (the car) or finding it abandoned,” said Lt. Frank Higgins of Lower Marion Police Department. “Cars don’t usually disappear entirely. At some point in the future they turn up, whether it’s a junkyard or somewhere else.”

Not too long after their search, a non-profit organization for search and recoveries used sonar to scan the Schuylkill River to see if she accidentally drove into it, but were disappointed when nothing showed.

“We fear the worst because of the amount of time that has gone by, and, as a mom devoted to her daughter, it wouldn’t make sense for her to abandon her family,” said Higgins.

Law seems to think that Sharpless was spotted somewhere since she disappeared. She claims to have received 50 reports of people who say they saw her, and they all say they either saw her in Camden, Philadelphia or Lancaster.

Those who say they saw her say that she was with two men, one of which was a thin Hispanic man with a goatee and a large African-American with a build like a football player.

Law stated that she believes Sharpless is still alive but somewhere in another state and that drugs may play a part in her disappearance.

“I think Toni is a phenomenal person who has overcome a lot of things,” said Law. “She loves her daughter more than life itself.”

“But I sense that Toni thinks her daughter is better off now. I believe Toni feels she’s broken,” Law said.

“I don’t think she broken at all,” said Law. “I can’t wait for the day I meet her.”

Law has visited the areas where people think they have spotted her to hang posters and talk to the people.

She has also looked into all reports coming in about bodies that are found to see is they could be Sharpless.

“People want to know and we can’t give then any kind of closure,” said Higgins.

Law is determined to eventually give her family the news that they want, finding her.

“I will never give up,” said Law.

Natalee Holloway’s case still in the news – Teens Cautioned

Five years ago on May 30, 2005, Natalee Holloway disappeared.

Divers seem to think they catpured Holloway's remains. Photo courtesy of

She was on a high school graduation field trip to an island in Aruba. No traces of her body were found except possible skeletal remains seen in a photo by two scuba divers that captured the image at the bottom on of the ocean, which turned out to be a false alarm.

Along with the underwater mystery, there was a jaw bone found along the beach of Aruba by another couple. According to, Dutch forensic experts are testing this bone to see if it belongs to Holloway.

As a cautionary tale, as young teens already planning senior week, they should be aware that this could happen to them.

For example, in 2002, three Manheim Township graduates were charged with sexual assault of an intoxicated 16 year old girl at senior week.

Now, being five years later, another similar murder has occurred. Police chief Gen. Cesar Guardia stated that Stephany Flores, 21, was found face down in the hotel she was last seen in with Jordan Van Der Sloot.

According to Lancaster New Era, the Dutch government said Interpol, an organization based in Paris that coordinates investigations made by the police forces of member countries into crimes with an international dimension, had issued an international arrest warrant for Sloot.

Guardia then stated that Flores and Sloot were last seen entering the Lima Hotel around 5 a.m., and Sloot exited the hotel alone about four hours later.

“We have an interview with a worker at the hotel who says she saw this foreigner with the victim enter his room,” Guardia said.

Stephany Flores Photo courtesy of

When Flores’s body was found fully clothed, they discovered multiple abrasions to her face and body with signs of trauma, the police general stated.

Some wonder what took so long for the hotel staff to check the room.

Autopsy results are still being waited on.

Guardia said that Sloot left Peru by land and his exit registered at the Santa Rosa border crossing. Sloot had been staying at the hotel since May 14 after entering the country on a flight from Columbia.

Stated in the Lancaster New Era, Sloot was found in a taxi Thursday, June 3, several days drive and a country away, and was arrested for the murder of Stephany Flores.

He put up no fight when he was detained about half way to the Pacific coast from Santiago, stated deputy Chilean investigative police spokesman Fernando Ovalle.

According to CBS News, Sloot’s Dutch lawyer said Sloot was intending on turning himself in shortly before he was found.

After the arrest and quickly into questioning, he confessed to killing Stephany Flores.

According to ABC News, Sloot grabbed Flores by the neck when he saw her looking up information about his previous case [Holloway] and then continued by hitting her.

“I confronted her,” Sloot told investigators, according to La Republic. “She was frightened, we argued and she wanted to get away. I grabbed her by the neck and I hit her.”

“I did not want to do it. The girl intruded into my private life,” said Sloot. “She had no right.”

According to, Sloot did confess but later tried to deny the whole thing. He claimed that the only reason

Natalee Holloway went missing during her high school trip and has yet to be found.

he confessed was because he was intimidated and thought he would be extradited to the Netherlands. His request to have his confession retracted was denied.

Joran van der Sloot was previously arrested twice but with little to no evidence connecting him to Holloway’s disappearance during a high school graduation trip, he was let go in 2005.

According to a Dutch television crime reporter, a hidden camera they set up captured secret footage of Sloot saying he was with Holloway when she collapsed on a beach, drunk.

After Sloot was found, he told investigators that he left Holloway on the beach drunk which implied that that was the last time he saw her.

A Dutch Newspaper reports that Sloot took money from the Holloway family in order for them to receive the location of her body. Sloot took the money but gave no address.

Natalee’s mom sent Sloot $10,000 through an FBI agent and later transferred $15,000 into his bank account. He then caught a flight to Latin America with the money.

“I wanted to get back at Natalee’s family — her parents have been making my life tough for five years,” the Dutch Newspaper quoted him as saying from prison in Peru. “When they offered to pay for the girl’s location, I thought: ‘Why not’?”

He also publicly confessed to murdering Holloway and then retracted the statements may times.

Being a law enforcement officer and Penn Manor’s resource officer, Jason Hottenstein knows all the details about safe drinking and the dangers of being with strangers.

“You have to be extremely cautious with people you don’t know,” said Hottenstein. “Trust no one that you don’t know.”

There was also a website created to petition against senior week.

The website titled Stop Senior Week claims that the results of senior week are deaths, movies that glorify underage drinking, sex

Joran van der Sloot is taken into custody Photo courtesy of

and drugs, public intoxication and drug use and hundreds of car accidents and hospital visits.

According to CBS News, Tim Miller, founder Texas Equusearch, a non-profit organization that searches for missing persons, has assisted with the search for Holloway from the beginning and has become very close friends of the family.

Miller stated that Holloway’s father, David Holloway, sends his sympathies to the Flores’ family in Peru.

“(David is) talking about what a senseless death that was, that we feel as though the cover-up that went on in Aruba, with Joran van der Sloot never being arrested, that we need to hold a lot of people accountable for Stephany’s death in Peru. I mean, a very, very sad time for everybody. And now Dave is just trying to, I think, just digest what’s really happening in his life again right now. And of course it brings it all back to 
Dave and Beth, I’m sure that it’s like it happened yesterday. So there’s disappointment, there’s anger, there’s frustrations. And, again, Stephany, there’s no reason she should be dead today. Somebody made some huge mistakes over there,” said Miller.

Joran van der Sloot is being held in a seventh-floor cell with a bunk bed and blanket with three meals a day while he is being further questioned of the death of 21 year old Stephany Flores and the disappearance of Natalee Holloway.

By Sarah Garner