Cold Case Benton Harbor: The Disappearance Of Glenna Jane West
The mysterious disappearance of the strikingly beautiful Glenna Jane West who was reported missing in December of 1977 after not being seen for a month.
There is so little information about her disappearance. The farther you dig, the more questions you have. Glenna grew up in Dowagiac and was one of nine girls born to her family. Her maiden name was Taul. She grew up as a Jehovah's Witness. Glenna married Robert (Bob) West and the two moved out west before returning with their four children to Benton Harbor in Berrien County. The couple was said to be practicing Mormons.
Those who knew Glenna described her as a very loving and vibrant woman who loved her children immensely. The reason they moved back to Michigan was so Glenna could be closer to her family. Bob worked for public school systems. Glenna held a clerical job at some point but left after her children were born. Later, the couple separated but it appears as though the two remained in the same home together. On December 12, 1977, Robert West reported Glenna missing, telling police he had not seen his wife in about a month. Her car was gone as well.
Why would a woman with no history of disappearing do so? Why would a doting mother just walk away, never to be heard from again? Why would a woman who moved back to Michigan to be closer to her parents and siblings suddenly cease contact with everyone she loved? Perhaps most puzzling, why would her husband Bob wait an entire month to report the mother of his children missing to the police?
Armed with more questions then answers I reached out to the lead detective, D/Sgt. Douglas Kill of the Michigan State Police Niles Post.
After reading it (the missing person report on Glenna) I have more questions or need clarification on a lot of it. It doesn’t appear the original officers really pinned down Robert West on where he last saw Glenna or what was going on at the time of her disappearance. Where did her car go? Who got it? Just lots more questions now. ~D/Sgt. Douglas Kill
Shortly after Bob reported Glenna missing, he was granted a divorce. He then took the couple's children and moved to Arizona with them. The house the couple shared near Blue Star Highway burned down shortly after Glenna disappeared. The land the house once sat has remained empty and vacant since. Those familiar with the situation have said that after Glenna's disappearance her family was only allowed very limited contact with her children. Bob was scheduled to take a polygraph test in Arizona but never came to the appointment. Glenna's family had said that there was a history of domestic violence between the couple. Her family told investigators that they suspected Bob had something do with Glenna's disappearance.
Glenna Jane West was 34-years-old when last seen. She is described as a Caucasian female, with brown hair and eyes. She stood 5 feet and 6 inches tall. Weighed approximately 140 pounds.
Anyone with information on the disappearance of Glenna Jane West is asked to contact D/Sgt. Douglas Kill of the Michigan State Police Niles Post at (269) 683-4411.