Nicole Bennett was reported missing around 8 a.m. on Friday, June 15, 2012, by her husband who said his wife had failed to return home from work the previous evening.
The 35 year-old wife and mother of three was working as a child care director at the Bay Shore Community Church in Gumboro, Maryland, when she called and told her husband she would be late returning to their Millsboro, Delaware, home. When Kevin Bennett awoke the next morning, his wife was not there. Bennett told officers he first went to the church to look for his wife but found only her car, which was still parked in the lot.
An hour after Kevin Bennett‘s missing persons call, 911 dispatch received a report about the body of a female lying at the bottom of an embankment off Swamp Road located near the Maryland/Delaware state line – approximately five miles away from the Bay Shore Community Church. Swamp Road is described in reports as being an isolated area near the town of Whaleyville, Maryland.
Investigators were able to identify Nicole Bennett by the rose tattoo on her ankle, a description of which was contained in Kevin Bennett‘s report to police.
Law enforcement officials from all investigating agencies, which includes Delaware and Maryland state and county bureaus, are remaining relatively tight-lipped about the victim’s cause of death and investigation into Nicole Bennett‘s murder, saying only that there are “multiple suspects.” Whether or not Kevin Bennett is among those suspects is unknown.
A memorial service and celebration of Nicole Bennett‘s life will take place at The Bay Shore Community Church on Wednesday, June 20, 2012, after which her body will be flown to her native O’Neill, Nebraska for a funeral mass and burial. Online condolences can be made through Nicole Bennett‘s obituary at Delaware Online or Biglins Mortuary.
Nicole was proceeded in death by her sister, Emily Reiser, in a January 2003 fatal car accident near Kearney, Nebraska.
If you have information about the Nicole Bennett homicide, please call the Worcester County Lower Eastern Shore Crime Solvers at 410-548-1776. All calls will remain confidential. A reward of an undisclosed amount is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of person or persons responsible.
Below is a video of Nicole Bennett discussing her baptism in April 2010:
UPDATE – July 7, 2012: Matthew Burton, custodian at The Bay Shore Community Church, was a suspect after his DNA was found on Nicole’s body. He was arrested and charged with murder on Friday night according to DelawareOnline.
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