Left and Center: Tammie circa, 1986
Right: Age Progressed to age 45
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: April 29, 1986
Missing From: Saratoga Springs, Saratoga County, New York
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date Of Birth: July 3, 1972
Age: 13 years old
Height and Weight: 5’5″ and 108 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian Female, Brown hair, Hazel eyes, Tammie has a homemade tattoo on her upper left arm which spells her initials “T.A.M”, her ears are both pierced and her hair was in a light shade of color at the time of her disappearance
Clothing/Jewelry Description: A denim jacket, a yellow striped shirt, black corduroy pants, beige boots, Tammie was last seen carrying a a shoulder bag
NCMEC Number: 603748
Details of Disappearance
Tammie was last seen in Saratoga Springs, New York on April 29th 1986. She missed her morning bus to Saratoga Springs Junior High School on West Circular Street. Tammie told her sister that she would hitchhike to her school. She never arrived for her classes that day and has never been seen or heard from again.
Tammie wasn’t reported missing for two days because her mother believed that she had gone to stay with a friend as she frequently did. Investigators initially believed that Tammie had runaway from home. At the time of her disappearance, she told her friends that she was planning on running away to Florida.
Some agencies stated that Tammie told various school friends that she and a friend were leaving for Florida after school that day. It has been said that Tammie was seen in school that day by a friend but records prove she never made it to any of her classes. According to these agencies, Tammi was last seen walking to that friends house near Saratoga Lake.
Investigators did travel to Jacksonville, Florida to interview persons in relation to her disappearance in recent years. There have also been multiple unconfirmed sightings of Tammie in Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, and Vermont as well as California in the years after she disappeared.
Her mother does not believe that Tammie ran away. She did not take any clothing with her that day besides the clothing she was wearing that day. She was wearing her most work pair of pants and her boots that gave her blisters. Investigators no longer believe she left on her own. Some missing children agencies continue to list Tammie as an endangered runaway.
Authorities investigating Tammie’s case now believe foul play was involved in Tammie’s case and that she was killed on the day of her disappearance. In 2011, investigators stated they had a possible suspect in Tammie’s disappearance.
They announced the person to be Arthur Mason Slaybaugh II, a former corrections officer. Tammie did know him and admired him and saw him as a mentor figure. She had visited his apartment at least once prior to her disappearance. He also served as a mentor to her friend previously.
Slaybaugh previously worked at the Mt. McGregor Correctional facility in Winton, New York. He was 26 years old in 1986. He died from a heart attack at the age of 41 on January 26th 2001. He was long suspected of involvement in Tammie’s disappearance but investigators had little to no evidence to suggest it.
After his death, several witnesses came forward with information that they were too fearful to give when he was still alive. One of the people interviewed said that Tammie did in fact go to his apartment that day. His apartment was located near Brown’s Beach near Saratoga Lake.
Much of the information received by authorities has prompted them to search not only the place he lived in during 1986 but they also searched a large field property that was owned by a relative of Slaybaugh for Tammie’s body. Nothing has been found in regards to Tammie’s disappearance as a result of the many searches and investigations.
Slaybaugh’s family has criticized investigators and said that he was not involved in Tammie’s murder. Investigators still believe they have found the person who murdered her and the case against Slaybaugh is strong.
Child killer, Lewis Lent, has been investigated for possible involvement in McCormicks case. He was convicted of murdering Massachusetts child, Jimmy Bernardo, a 12 year old boy who was murdered in 1990 and was also charged with killing 12 year old Sara Wood who was abducted and killed in New York in 1993. Her body has never been recovered.
Investigators have attempted to see if Lent could be involved in other cases. He’s a suspect in the 1992 Massachusetts disappearance of 16 year old James Lusher who disappeared while riding his bike to his grandmothers home. Lent has since confessed to the crime and led investigators to a pond where he allegedly disposed of the body. James has not been found.
Lent is also considered a possible suspect in the 1985 New York disappearance of Karen Wilson, the 1986 Maine disappearance of Kimberly Moreau, and the 1990 possible abduction of Monique Santiago who disappeared from New York. Lent is considered an unlikely suspect in Tammie’s disappearance but he has not been ruled out.
Tammie was a 7th grade student at the time she disappeared and lived on Deerlap Place in the Geyser Crest Neighborhood. Her parents moved to Cossayuna, New York in 2006. Her mother continues to search for answers in her daughters disappearance and hopes her remains will be found. Her five siblings still live in the same neighborhood she disappeared from.
Tammie’s disappearance remains unsolved and foul play is suspected. Her father passed away in 2017. In his obituary, he lists Tammie as preceding him in death. She has never been located.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Saratoga Springs Police Department 518-584-1800