Niqui McCown was looking forward to her wedding, but in July 2001 it seemed like she was going to evaporate. People who cared about Niqui and the police looked everywhere for her, but they never found her.
The first half of Investigation Discovery’s Still a Mystery: Danger at Close Range is about what happened when Niqui went missing and what clues the police were able to find afterward. So if you have the same question, we have the answer.
Where did Niqui McCown go?
Marilyn “Niqui” Renee Nicole McCown grew up in the city of Richmond, Indiana. People said that the young woman was beautiful, smart and funny and that she had her whole life ahead of her. At the time of the incident, Niqui was a corrections officer at a local jail caring for their then nine-year-old daughter, Payton. The 28-year-old woman had been separated from Payton’s father for some time and married her high school sweetheart, Bobby Webster.
On July 22, 2001, Niqui, Bobby, and Payton went to church together. Around noon they went their separate ways. Niqui took Payton to her parents’ house and then went to a nearby laundry to have her clothes cleaned. According to the show, Niqui returned an hour later but then left to get her laundry. But this time there was no sign of her coming back. The family have long searched for the young mother after learning that she was missing on July 23, 2001, but they have not found her.
Is Niqui McCown still alive or is he dead?
The show says Bobby’s actions after Niqui went missing made people suspicious. He had pawned her ring and was trying to get the wedding deposit back. The polygraph test on Bobby also showed that he was lying. But in the end, the authorities expelled him. The case came to nothing until November 2001, when Niqui’s car was found in an apartment complex in Dayton, Ohio.
Niqui used to live in this apartment, and Payton’s father still lived there when the car was found. Some of her clean clothes were also in the car. But there was no forensic evidence in the car, so it turned out to be a dead end. Tommy Swint was one of Niqui’s colleagues in prison, so the police eventually turned their attention to him. The show said that Tommy was crazy about her, but she only saw him as a friend. The police took an interest in him, but there was no evidence that he had anything to do with the disappearance.
Then, in 2007, Tommy took an oath of office as a police officer in Trotwood, Ohio. But he resigned within two months when it became clear he was still a suspect in Niqui’s case. In November 2007, police received a tip that Tommy could be involved in a 1991 murder. In December 1991, some arborists in Jefferson Township, Ohio, found the body of Tina Marie Ivery in a pile of brush.
Tina’s body was wrapped in plastic bags taped together and then in a quilt. She had been beaten and choked to death. She was naked below the waist. At the time, the police had collected semen, blood and fingerprints, but found nothing else. Then, in May 2008, it was decided that Tommy’s semen was on Tina’s jacket and that he could not be ruled out as the source of the blood stain. In November 2009, the Crime Lab determined that Tommy’s fingerprint was on the tape found at the crime scene.
Tommy said he didn’t know Tina and had nothing to do with her death, but on February 3, 2010, he was charged with her murder. About an hour later, as police arrived at Tommy’s home in Phenix City, Alabama, to arrest him, they heard a gunshot. The 43-year-old shot himself in the head with a gun in an attempt to kill himself. At this point, he had not been accused of taking Niqui.
Tommy would never find peace in Niqui’s case now that he’s dead. But the family has not given up hope over time. Payton, now an adult, still wanted to find her mother. In July 2021, she said: “I want to get back out there. I want to get back into footwork. I want to hang up the flyers. I want to go around and review the case to see where we missed something. Even if we do find answers, we’ll have to deal with them for the rest of our lives, but I think a closure would help us a lot.
Niqui McCown, a prison guard, was engaged to Bobby Webster at the age of 28. Three weeks before her wedding, on July 22, 2001, she went to her mother’s house in anger. She told her about a time when two men bothered her in a laundromat and wouldn’t leave her alone. She was afraid to go back to get her laundry, but ended up leaving her mother’s house.
She disappeared that day, and no one has seen or heard from her since. Police could find no evidence of wrongdoing or a reason she might have left.
The day Niqui went missing started like any other day. She went to church and then did the laundry while Bobby met his best man at a tuxedo shop. They wanted to meet later in the afternoon. With only three weeks left until their wedding, Niqui wanted it to be very special. She had a nine-year-old daughter from a previous relationship, and even her ex-boyfriend seemed happy for her. Although she was the youngest and young at heart of ten children in a close-knit family, she had always been a perfectionist.
After Niqui went missing, her family and the police investigated a number of possible reasons. At first they thought the men from the laundromat might have taken them away. Bobby was also a suspect when he started acting strange in the weeks following her disappearance. Not only did he postpone their wedding; he canceled it altogether. The day after her disappearance, he called Sinclair Community College to recover her unpaid tuition. He reportedly got angry when he found out her employer was paying for it. He also wanted to return his wedding ring, but the manager wouldn’t let him because Niqui paid for it. He says he did it because he needed the money to look for her and buy a cell phone. He agreed to take a lie detector test when investigators asked him to do so. They said he failed. But he says neither he nor his attorney ever saw the results.
Curiously, Niqui’s car was found in Dayton, Ohio on November 5, three months after she went missing. It was in the parking lot of an apartment complex. It took her more than 45 minutes to get there from her home in Richmond. The door lock was broken, the ignition was broken and the stereo was gone. Her clothes were still in the house. There were no prints in or around the car. Her ex-boyfriend had been staying in a different part of the apartment complex where it was found, which was odd. But the afternoon she was last seen, he had a place to be. He shouldn’t have anything to do with it.
Police found that Niqui had called a colleague in Dayton and asked about hair and makeup products. The colleague told her there was a store in Dayton where she could buy them. The colleague’s home was about a mile from the apartment building. Niqui might have gone there, people think. Some people thought that the person who took them drove their car there to divert people’s attention from them. This brought the police back to Bobby. But he says he’s not guilty and doesn’t know anything about where she went. Her sister thinks he’s innocent. But her mother isn’t sure about him yet.
Suspects: Bobby is said to have something to do with Niqui’s disappearance. He broke up with her and tried to get his wedding ring back. He also took a lie detector test and failed. But he hasn’t been a suspect since.
Two men who molested Niqui at the laundromat were also considered suspects. But they have never been found or identified. Her clothes were found in her car, showing that she made it safely out of the laundry mat. Investigators eventually found surveillance video taken across the street. It showed that she had left without harm.
Niqui’s ex-boyfriend’s car was parked at the condominium complex where he lived. But he had an excuse: he was at work the day she disappeared. He wasn’t a suspect because he had an alibi and passed a lie detector.
This case was first shown on the September 19, 2002 episode.
It was also talked about on the shows Missing, Crime Watch Daily and Disappeared.
No solution found. After Niqui disappeared, Tommy Swint, who used to work with her, was named as a suspect in her case. A native of Trotwood, Ohio, he worked as a security guard and correctional officer. He later got a job as a police officer but had to quit because he didn’t tell them he was a suspect in their disappearance. He sued the police, saying they never told him they thought he was a suspect. But it was thrown out when police produced evidence he knew he was a suspect.
In November 2007, a person told police about the lawsuit after hearing about it on the news. The source urged her to investigate Swint as a possible suspect in the death of Tina Ivory, who was 33. She was from Dayton and worked as a prostitute. On December 17, 1991, she was killed. When police spoke to one of Swint’s old friends, she said he used to date Tina. She also said Tina was found wrapped in a blanket that looked like one he had in his car. Her nephew later told police he saw a trail of blood from her basement window to Swint’s car.
In 2008, Niqui’s sister told the public that Niqui saw Swint before she disappeared. They had met when they both worked in the same prison. On the day of her disappearance, she tried several times to get in touch with her sister. Her sister thinks she tried to tell her about the relationship. Swint was considered a suspect shortly after her disappearance. Her car was found where he lived, in an apartment complex.
In May 2008, Tina’s semen and blood DNA was matched to Swint’s. His print was also found on the duct tape wrapped around her body. He was charged with killing her on February 3, 2010. But that same day, he killed himself at his home in Alabama. Police now believe he is the most likely person who kidnapped Niqui. They also believe he may be responsible for other murders. But now that he’s dead, no charges can be brought against him. Police have also found that he was seeing someone else at the time Niqui went missing. They believe she knows something important about the case. But she wasn’t willing to talk to the police.
In November 2003, bones believed to belong to Niqui were found near Spencer, Indiana, but DNA testing could not say for sure. She is still listed as missing by the government.