On February 4, 1990, Deborah Deann Poe was working at a Circle K convenience store in Orlando, Florida. It was there she was last seen by a friend at approximately 3:00 a.m. before she vanished without a trace.
After the store was discovered to be unattended around 4:00 a.m. that same morning, police were called to the scene. Deborah’s car, with her purse lying in the backseat, was undisturbed. There were no signs of a struggle inside the store or the immediate outer perimeter. Search dogs used at the start of the investigation tracked Deborah’s scent through the rear of the store into an adjoining parking lot, leading law enforcement to believe she got into a car.
Did Deborah possibly leave of her own accord? Friends and family were adamant Deborah was much too responsible to do so. They say she would never abandon her job nor leave her mother to worry needlessly. The deserted purse, which contained Deborah’s paycheck, and car lend credibility to their statements.
Later a witness came forward and stated he was waited on by a white male with long, black hair, wearing a Megadeath t-shirt, and a skull ring as well as cross wire earring. The customer assumed the man was the store clerk. The witness stated when he asked for a particular brand of cigarettes, he had to point them out to the “clerk” because the man did not know where they were. This “clerk” has never been identified but police would be interested in speaking with him about Deborah’s disappearance.
In March 2002, police publicly announced they had a suspect in Deborah’s disappearance. Much to everyone’s surprise, it was Deborah’s boyfriend at the time she went missing, who, by the time of this announcement, was an ordained minister. It was at this time detectives used cadaver dogs to search the grassy area behind Chapel Hill Baptist Church, which sits directly across the street from the boyfriend’s former home. Although the search was fruitless, one investigator stated he believed a corpse had been buried there at some time based on the dog’s reaction.
Since then, there have been no viable leads and Deborah’s case has grown cold. If you have any information about the disappearance of Deborah Deann Poe, please contact the Orange County Sheriff’s Office at 407.836.3700 or submit tips through their website at www.ocso.com.