Left: Judith circa 1982 Right: Age Progressed to age 45
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: June 5, 1982 from Chelmsford, Middlesex County, Massachusetts
Classification: Non-Family Abduction
Date Of Birth: August 12, 1964
Age: 16 years old
Height and Weight: 5’5″; 135 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: White Female, Brown hair, Brown eyes, Judith has an unspecified medical condition that causes her to develop a rash on her forehead and knuckles, she has scars under her chin and on her left wrist, she also has a small mole on her right calf and has a cap on her upper left tooth, she may use the nickname “Judy”
Clothing/Jewelry Description: A hip length white sweater with brown buttons, brown corduroy designer pants, and tan sandals
Circumstances of Disappearance
Judith was last seen on the night of June 5th 1982 after attending a party in Billerica, Massachusetts. She was attending the party with her Fiancé. They had been engaged for four months. During the party, They got into a fight which resulted in Judith driving him home and her returning to the party herself.
Witnesses told authorities and investigators that Judith left the party at approximately 2:00 am in her black 1972 or 1977 Dodge Dart. She was never seen or heard from again and her car was also never recovered.
Authorities believe that Judith might have been the victim of foul play. Investigators that worked on Judith’s case received a tip from the United States Secret Service in Washington DC. At the time, they were investigating a counterfeiting operation. One of the men involved in the ring, James Mitchell DeBardeleben, is considered a suspect in Judith’s disappearance.
He is believed to have committed many crimes against women. In November of 1983, United States Secret Service Agents searched James Virginia residence and found journals, tapes, and photographs of various women. They were being forced to do sadomasochistic acts against their will. He is suspected of attacking and killing many women.
James apparently had a thing for brunette females. Judith was a brunette. He was also once considered a suspect in the 1982 presumed abduction of Kellie Brownlee from Michigan. She has never been found but she fits DeBardeleben’s description of women he preferred.
At the time of her disappearance, Judith was employed as an employee at a fast food restaurant in the Chelmsford area. Her mother told authorities that a male coworker allegedly harassed Judith and she was frightened of him. It’s unknown if he’s a suspect in Judith’s disappearance or not.
While it was apparent that Judith was going through a rebellious stage at the time of her disappearance, her brother, Joe, stated that Judith would never have runaway. She was close to him and her mother and would never abandon them. She may have been involved with criminal activities and drugs at the time of her disappearance. Oddly, the day prior to her disappearance, Judith asked her father to look in the trunk of her car and open it because she was too scared to do this by herself.
Judith’s family believes that she met with foul play at the hands of someone that Judith was aquatinted with. It’s possible that someone who was at the party knows more about Judith’s disappearance then anyone. Sometime after she went missing, an unidentified woman called the Chartier family and stated she knew the fate of Judith. She stated she could say anymore as her life had been threatened.
Judith’s case remains unsolved and foul play is suspected.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Chelmsford Police Department 978-256-2521
NCMEC Number: 600731