Tip Leads Police to Man in Heeringa Case; Questioning Underway

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

UPDATE:  FOX 17’s Ann Marie LaFlamme reports at 9pm that the man is still being questioned; in fact, he may be questioned for another couple of hours.  The man does have a silver van.  She is meeting with the chief shortly.  More to come on FOX 17 News at 10.  https://twitter.com/AnnMarieLaFlamm


NORTON SHORES, Mich. –  FOX 17 News has learned that one of the several persons of interest in the Jessica Heeringa disappearance was being questioned Wednesday night at the Norton Shores Police Department.

FOX 17’s Ann Marie LaFlamme reports the man was named in a tip, then was pulled over while driving and brought into the police department for questioning.

Several people were being looked at after Heeringa went missing Friday night during her shift at the Exxon gas station in Norton Shores.  As FOX 17 first reported during its 6:00pm newscast Wednesday, the owner of the gas station was cleared as one of the persons of interest in the case.  Heeringa’s fiance was also given a polygraph test and is not considered a suspect.

Earlier Wednesday, FOX 17 broadcast exclusive home video of Jessica Heeringa seen here: https://fox17online.com/2013/05/01/home-video-of-jessica-heeringa/#axzz2S5d6sfoK

FOX 17 has crews in Norton Shores working with sources for more information.  Join us for a live report at 10pm.  Also, follow Ann Marie LaFlamme on Twitter for real-time updates on this developing story: https://twitter.com/AnnMarieLaFlamm

If you would like us to ask a specific question to the police chief, follow this link: https://fox17online.com/2013/05/01/heeringa-investigation-your-questions-to-the-chief/#axzz2S5lCESEp

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  • pete moss

    is your station also covering the 3 women missing in Grand Rapids since the beginning of the year and the 4 missing people in the Holland/Saugatuck area over the last year?? I dont recall seeing such interest as im seeing here with this case as with the other ones? why not?

  • Krystal

    The friends and family went to news outlets and social media immediately. They pushed stations to get the word out. Sadly, that does not happen with every missing persons case. Communities need to rally together and push EVERYONE to get the word out when something like this happens.

  • Chris


    That is irrelevant. The news story at hand is about this girl. Hopefully they find here alive and well. There's no sense in coming here and making a tangential moral plea to a group of people that have ZERO control over what the media covers.

  • Fox 17 Fails

    Chris, exactly what planet are you from? It was an honest question, and completely relevant. It also makes fantastic sense to ask that question of people who do, in fact, control what the media covers, given that they are, in fact, a media outlet. If you can't question the media about the media, who exactly should you ask?
    I'd like to know why, in a similar case of a missing resident of the community, FOX17 posted earlier to Facebook and Twitter that local police "expect she is probably dead by now." Talk about insensitive and poorly worded! Even if a police spokesperson said it in context, the way they released it was completely uncalled for. I understand why they erased it from their social media pages. Doesn't change the fact that many people saw it, complained that it was completely inappropriate, and there is no sign of it now except the screenshots.
    I hope they find her, just like I hope they find Latrice Maze. Even if the police suspect she may be dead by now. It's sad – I hope they find them all, alive and well. But the point is that it is completely relevant and this is exactly the right place to come and question the media. If Jessica Heeringa was African American, the media coverage of this would be completely different. That's a cold fact that nobody seems to want to admit, but it is unquestionably true.

    • ToddS

      Regarding others that have gone missing, it is up to the families to press the media and cops to keep the story in the news and do some work themselves, searches, posters, facebook shares, and so on. This case was some what unusual with her missing from an open business and clearly an abduction. These days really this, if she was black really gets old. Don't expect people to be beating down the door asking to cover a missing person, people have to be the ones to push to keep the story on the front page. That takes efforts from the friends and family of the victim. Why don't you try to help get the word out about others gone missing, rather than sit here and complain. I'm sorry for anyone that has to go through this but that does not take away from this tragedy either. Have a bit of respect for the family when making comments.

  • Guest

    The last time I saw a face like that (only fatter) was a fellow by the last name of Ulam. I know for a fact that the guy I knew has been dead for 10 years, but that's not to say he couldn't have fathered this particular person of interest.

  • Kindra

    I am happy for this girls sake, that she has had all the media coverage as she has, even GMA and the Today show, but, I do agree with the opinion that every person deserves that coverage, no matter what, and it’s a sad that in this day and age, people feel that race plays a factor in that. I know that if this was my daughter, niece, granddaughter, sister, friend I would be upset not getting equal coverage as another case. Prayers to all the families with missing loved ones, may they all get home to you.

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