Still, there are others around the nation who are less notorious, but equally puzzling.

You know the Laci Peterson story, but how about Amanda Jones?

She’s the less-famous pregnant woman who vanished two years ago near her
home in Hillsboro, Mo. And it’s Jones’ story that more resembles the
disappearance of Lake Township’s mother-to-be, Jessie M. Davis.

Both women were 26 years old.

Both were nine months pregnant.

Both already had a small child.

“They were due to give birth,” said Lt. Tommy Wright of the Jefferson County
Sheriff’s office in Missouri.

Similar enough that Tuesday morning Wright was looking up a number to phone
authorities in Stark County, 600 miles away. To at least talk to them about
how he investigated his case ‹ which remains unsolved.
“But in our case, she had a prearranged meeting with a male ... ours was
outdoors; yours was indoors,” Wright said. “In those ways it was very
different. But we believe foul play was involved, too.”

SEARCHING FOR AMANDA

The last time anyone saw Amanda Jones was Aug. 14, 2005. She was heading to
the Hillsboro Civic Center to meet the man believed to have fathered her
unborn child. The man has since denied he was the father. He’s told
authorities he knows nothing of her disappearance, since he left her at the
civic center.

The community instantly responded.

The sheriff’s office commanded a 27-man task force for the first three
weeks. They logged more than 3,000 man hours the first two weeks. They
chased hundreds of leads. Then, it slowed. Now, Wright said, a few
detectives work the case.

“You owe it to her and the family,” he said.

Jones had a 4-year-old daughter.

The sheriff’s office has tried conventional and unconventional methods,
including the paranormal. Wright and another detective set up a “Finding
Amanda Jones” page on Myspace, a popular Internet social networking site.

Initially, they planned to track who was logging on to the site, but
technically couldn’t do it. Still, Wright said the page has kept the case in
the public eye, and just maybe made her killer feel guilty.

“I think they both (Jones and her baby) are gone,” Wright said.

Other cases

Pregnant women do disappear.

In 2000, Michelle Bica, 39, kidnapped nine-months-pregnant Theresa Andrews
from her home in Ravenna. The 23-year-old Andrews was buried in a shallow
grave, the new baby removed from her abdomen. Bica shot herself to death as
police arrived to talk to her ‹ the healthy baby was found in Bica’s home.

There’s LaToyia Figueroa, 24, of Philadelphia, strangled by the baby’s
father in 2005. Evelyn Hernandez, 24, full-term pregnant, vanished with her
5-year-old son in 2002 from her San Francisco home ‹ her body  was found
floating in the Bay, but neither her son nor baby were found. April Renee
Greer, 20, 712 months pregnant, disappeared in 2003 from Burlington, N.C.,
her body later found in a trash can along a creek.

Murder is actually a leading cause of pregnancy-associated injury deaths in
the United States, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, published in the American Journal of Public Health in 2005.
Deaths of nearly one-third of the pregnant women were ruled a homicide,
second only to auto accidents.