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Mickey Guidry was a 16-year-old kid from San Marcos, California who evidently liked engines and vehicles. In November 2009 he “borrowed” his stepfather’s motorcycle without permission and rode it to a state park in Riverside County. This was at least the third time he’d taken off in a vehicle owned by his parents. When the motorcycle ran out of gas, Mickey found a park ranger and made up a story about having been kidnapped. Law enforcement began searching for the “kidnappers”–with a helicopter, no less–but Mickey then admitted he’d made up the story and he had just run away. Believing he might have mental problems, his family made him an appointment with a psychiatrist.

He never made it to the appointment. Not long after, on November 25, he took off again, this time driving his parents’ Jeep Grand Cherokee. Mickey’s Charley Project file explains what happened.

[Mickey took the Jeep and] went camping with friends at Anza Borrego State Park off Split Mountain Road. He left the campsite at 3:00 p.m. on November 27, presumably to go home, but never arrived and has never been heard from again. The next day, the SUV was found damaged and stuck in the sand in a remote area of the park, eight miles from the nearest paved road. A photo of it is posted below this case summary. The keys were in the ignition, but the SUV wasn’t in driveable condition; in addition to its being stuck in the sand, the front bumper and side mirror had been torn off and one of the front wheels was bent. Many of Mickey’s personal belongings, including his wallet, clothes, cellular phone charger and school identification card, were inside the vehicle, and the vehicle’s spare tire cover and a blanket were found on a rocky trail less than two miles away.

After Mickey left home on November 25, his family reported the Jeep as stolen but didn’t report him as a missing person, because they’d assumed he was fine and would return home in a few days. They cut off service to his cellular phone as punishment, and planned to ground him when he came home. They didn’t report him missing until after the Jeep was located. They also reactivated his phone, which disappeared along with Mickey, but he never used it again.

What happened in that remote area of Anza Borrego State Park on that November afternoon? The simplest theory is that Mickey got the Jeep stuck in the sand, abandoned it and caught a ride with someone, possibly off-roading in the same area, and that person or persons abducted him. However, is it that simple? Given the damage to the Jeep it sounds like more happened than that–and how did the tire cover and the blanket get 2 miles away?

This is a really interesting case because the various clues complicate any simple answers. Whatever happened to Mickey Guidry, I hope there is eventually some break in the case.