Last June, I told you all about an 18-year-old Amish girl who went missing in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. The story was near and dear to my heart because I grew up there.
Shortly thereafter, a man named Justo Smoker was arrested for kidnapping her. She was presumed dead, but her family was left without answers as to where she was…until yesterday.
A body was found on April 21 near the area of Gap, 10 months to the day after Linda disappeared. This afternoon, District Attorney Heather Adams said the body was confirmed to be that of Linda Stoltzfoos. 
Here’s the latest:
- Investigators believe that Smoker first buried Stoltzfoos’ body near the area where searchers discovered some of Stoltzfoos’ clothing (a dress, bonnet, and shoes) over the summer.  A few days later, Smoker dug her up and relocated her to an area near his workplace. Police say they believe she was killed “within hours” of the kidnapping.
- An autopsy will be performed tomorrow, April 23, to determine the cause of death.
- DNA belonging to Smoker was discovered on one of the stockings found buried. 
- The remains were found along railroad tracks. 
- It’s not clear how the body was discovered, but it’s rumored that Smoker led officials to the remains after cutting a deal. (This is ONLY a rumor.) Smoker was arrested on July 10, 2020, and charged with kidnapping and false imprisonment.  In December, Smoker received a general charge of homicide. Then, in March, a judge ruled that there was sufficient evidence for a homicide trial. 
- Adams said her office had not yet decided whether it would seek the death penalty.
- The area where Stoltzfoos’ body was buried had been covered by previous searches.
It’s not the conclusion Stoltzfoos’ family and the community had hoped for, but at least now they know. Her family can finally bring her home and not spend sleepless nights wondering where she is.
I’ll keep you posted as more updates come in.