FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 25, 2016
On June 23, 2016, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office began investigating two missing adults, 50-year-old William Benhardt, of Lincoln County and 50-year-old Sussette Benhardt who were last seen at Snow Hill Nursery that morning.
Witnesses told investigators they saw both William and Sussette arguing on the property around 10 a.m. on June 22 and that was the last time they were seen. Around 4 p.m. on June 23, William Benhardt was found deceased in his truck with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Montgomery County.
During the search of the residence, Sussette’s cellular phone was located in a washing machine along with a covert digital recording device. Early this morning during a forensic analysis of the recorder detectives discovered a digital audio recording.
The audio file indicated an assault on Sussette by William.
The coordinated grid searches on foot of Snow Hill Nursery and adjoining acreage are complete as of 7 p.m. tonight with no sighting of Sussette. The Sheriff’s Office has suspended a large scale search; however, will continue a limited search outside the properties owned by Benhardt’s and follow up on additional leads.
Anyone with information on this case is encouraged to call the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office at 636-528-6100.