Car of pregnant woman who went missing with toddler daughter in 1998 discovered in Arkansas with human remains

Source: Pope County Sheriff's Office

Oct. 30 2021, Published 9:23 a.m. ET

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An organization working on cold cases across the country has helped crack the mystery of what may have happened to an Arkansas woman and her daughter who vanished 33 years ago.

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According to the Pope County Sheriff’s Office, on Oct. 26, the non-profit group Adventures With Purpose located the car of Samantha Jean Hopper submerged in eight feet of water and about 25 yards from the shore of the Illinois Bayou in Russellville.

Hopper was nine-months pregnant when she went missing on Sept. 11, 1998.

“Samantha was reported to have been traveling to drop her daughter, Courtney Holt, off before continuing on to a concert in Little Rock; however, Samantha, her daughter, and her blue Ford Tempo were never located,” the sheriff’s office said.

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After pulling the car from the water, investigators found human remains inside and sent them to the Arkansas State Crime Lab in Little Rock for DNA testing, officials said.

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“The Pope County Sheriff’s Office would like to send our sincere condolences to the family of Samantha Hopper and Courtney Holt, and we are thankful to have been a small part of helping bring this 23-year-old case to closure,” Sheriff Shane Jones said.

Adventures With Purpose said in a statement, “Samantha and her 2 babies have now been brought home.”


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