The Lewiston-Clarkston Valley Serial Killer

From the late 1970's into the mid-1980's, disappearances and murders rocked the quaint metropolitan area along Northeastern Washington and Northern Idaho known as the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley. Over the years, suspects have been ruled out, some bodies found while others are still missing... but the biggest question is who is the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley serial killer.

Although they are 4 cases that definitely attributed to this series of killings, a fifth is also widely accepted as being another victim of the killer. The first disappearance occurred in 1979 and the last in 1984. Going forward, we will be outlining each victim and then a few suspects. Despite having so many victims, the case has gone cold although many believe they know who the killer truly is. 

Christina White

Christina White was a hyperactive 12 year old girl from Asotin, Washington who had been at a friend's house after a local parade on April 28, 1979. She had been known to get sick from being overheated before. So, when her mother received a call asking to pick her daughter up, unfortunately she didn't have a vehicle. So she told Christina to ride her bike home. Christina was last seen after stopping by a different friend's house where she got a wet washcloth from the friend's stepdad. When she didn't shop up, her mother immediately became concerned. Eventually, the friend's stepdad was cleared of any involvement but Christina White has never been seen again. 

Kristin David

22 year old University of Idaho student Kristin David was an avid biker. She was regularly seen riding her bicycle between Moscow and Lewiston, Idaho. In fact the last time she was seen was on her bicycle making her way to her summer job at Twin City Food Plant. A witness reported seeing her speaking with someone in a brown van along Highway 95 on June 26, 1981, although they could not make anything out about the driver. No one would see Kristin David again until July 4, 1981. Two fisherman had taken a boat out on Snake River for the day and came upon a black trashbag floating down the river. Much to their terror, when they opened it, they discovered human remains. Police were called to the scene and discovered more bags down river close to a bridge. Police believed that someone dumped the bags off of the bridge not too long before the remains were found on the river near Clarkston, Washington. 

Kristina Nelson and Jacqueline Ann "Brandi" Miller

Kristina Nelson

Brandi Miller

Brandi Miller, 18, and Kristina Nelson, 21, were step sisters who lived about a block apart in Lewiston. Both girls were attending the same local college. Although possibly at different times, both girls had also worked at the Lewiston Civic Theater not too far from where Kristina was living. On September 12, 1984, they had decided to go to the local Safeway grocery store for a few things. Kristina left a note for her boyfriend telling him to let himself in and they would return shortly. Their path to the store would have taken them next to the theater. However, when the had not arrived the next morning, he notified authorities. The girls were missing for almost two years, when a man collecting cans along Highway 3 discovered remains in a ravine. The remains were identified as Brandi Miller and Kristina Nelson. Police believe in this case that the bodies of the two women were originally placed closer to the road but the killer returned and moved them farther away in the hopes that they wouldn't be found. 

Steven Pearsall

Steven Pearsall was a worker at the Lewiston Civic Theater. He was last seen on the same night as Kristina Nelson and Brandi Miller. His girlfriend had dropped him off at the Civic theater with a duffel bag of dirty clothes as he was going to use the laundry facilities there. In addition to the laundry, he was also carrying his prized clarinet and planned to practice while waiting for the laundry to get done. However, no one has seen him since and his clarinet was left behind which is something he would have never just left. Initially, Steve Pearsall was the main suspect in the disappearance of the two woman. It is assumed that he and Kristina Nelson were at least acquaintances. Eventually, police revised their theory and now believe that all three were in the vicinity of the Lewiston Civic theater the night they all disappeared, 

The Suspects

Otis Toole

In 1982, Otis Toole implicated himself in the murder of Kristin David. Now, Toole is known for confessing to many cases falsely. Around the same time as his confession, two other men had also confessed to the crime. Ultimately, in 2009, Otis Toole was ruled out as a suspect.

The Unknown Suspect/Lance Voss

Anyone who has ever lived in a small town can testify that once someone has been linked to a crime, word usually gets around quickly. This is what happened when it comes to Lance Voss. Initially, he was identified in 1995, as an unnamed suspect who was present at the time that theater the night that Steven Pearsall, Kristina Nelson, and Brandi Miller disappeared. This is also when police announced that the two murders and disappearance of Pearsall were connected. That same year, the unnamed suspect was interviewed by Spokane, Washington police regarding some murders there but those were linked to another killer. In 1998, Police state that Kristin David's murder was linked to the 3 cases from 1984. Then in 2009, it was revealed that she had also worked at the Lewiston Civic Theater at some point. To make suspicions even greater, Voss also lived a block over from Christina White's home in 1979.

Who is Lance Voss?

Lance Voss was a long time resident of the Lewiston-Clarston Valley who was born on November 15, 1947. In 1972, he was arrested for breaking into a funeral home. Inside the mortuary at that time were 2 teen females who were both recently deceased. One of the two was ruled a suicide after she was found floating along the shore after a fight with her boyfriend. No one knows why he decided to break in but he later pled guilty to later charges. 

After Christina White's disappearance, he repeatedly offered his assistance to the police including specific areas to search. This struck many officers he came into contact with as odd. In later investigations, multiple family members remember him being present at various searches for their loved ones. 

After the disappearances in 1984, he gave police a detailed timeline of that night. Voss stated that he and Pearsall had worked together the day before and that he saw Steven leave around 9 pm the night in question. Lance Voss then claims to have left the theater soon after. He then returned around 10 pm and slept until 4 am on a sofa in the theater. 

Although there is no definitive evidence linking Voss to the murders and disappearance in this area, he remains a suspect. Several other murders, one as recent as 2012, have also been attributed to the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley serial killer but justice has never been given to the families of the original five. 

Was Lance Voss involved or is someone else responsible for the disappearances of Christina White and Steven Pearsall and the murders of Kirstin David, Kristina Nelson, and Brandi Miller?




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