New Victim In KC “Serial Killer” Case Found In Missouri River, Clay County Prosecutor Admits Greater Public Safety Threat Than Initially Stated

After dismissing concerns over missing Black women, Kansas City now grapples with the chilling discovery of Jaynie Crosdale’s body, further validating the specter of a “serial killer” or an accomplice still at large. The tragic outcome contradicts the official police narrative, driving urgent demands for transparency and accountability in the handling of a botched high-profile case that has failed so many.
  • Remains of Jaynie Crosdale were discovered in a barrel floating in the Missouri River, mirroring the blue barrels found at Timothy Haslett Jr.’s home. This raises the alarming possibility that Crosdale was another victim of Haslett, further validating him as a serial killer.

  • Alternatively, the similarities suggest a possible accomplice still at large, either collaborating with Haslett or operating alone. In either case, there is now evidence of a larger threat than originally claimed by police.

  • The Kansas City police department had initially dismissed concerns over missing black women in the area, stating claims of a serial killer were “unfounded rumors” despite conducting no formal investigation.

  • They failed to treat Crosdale as a potential victim from the outset, instead exposing her as a “witness” in the Haslett case without evidence. This contradicted the later call for “Justice for Jaynie Crosdale” by the prosecutor.

  • The Crosdale family believes she would only have been involved in Haslett’s crimes as a victim herself. They condemn the witness label as implying complicity.

In an alarming revelation, the remains of Jaynie Crosdale were discovered in a barrel floating in the Missouri River. Police have been searching for Crosdale since January of this year after having identified her as having crucial information regarding the case of alleged “serial killer” Timothy Haslett Jr.

Last October, shockwaves were sent throughout the Kansas City Metro and surrounding cities when a Black woman escaped a basement torture dungeon of a white man, Timothy Haslett Jr. who had held her captive for over a month. Weeks prior to her escape, The Defender, along with numerous Black community members, raised the alarm of missing Black women from Prospect Avenue.

The Kansas City Missouri Police Department, as well as The Kansas City Star, KMBC, FOX4, Newsweek, The Atlanta Black Star and KCTV5 infamously dismissed the claims as “completely unfounded rumors” and stated “there is no basis to support these claims,” despite the fact that virtually no investigation had been conducted. 

Left: Excelsior Springs PD & Investigators at the Crime Scene, Right: Mugshot of Timothy Haslett Jr. (Man charged with kidnapping & torturing Black woman in his basement for over a month)

Crosdale’s Murder Points to Disturbing Facts

This latest chilling revelation, already grievous in itself, finds an eerie echo to the findings at Haslett’s home. 

Last October, several large blue barrels were uncovered at Haslett’s residence during a search by law enforcement. The chilling parallel raises a horrifying prospect: was Jaynie Crosdale also a victim of Haslett’s heinous crimes? If so, this could potentially confirm Haslett as a serial killer, a term that carries significant implications and heightens the urgency for a thorough investigation.

The alternate, equally disturbing possibility is that Haslett may not have been working alone. If Crosdale was not a direct victim of Haslett, then it suggests a grim reality of an accomplice or even a separate offender, collaborating with Haslett or operating independently, still at large in our community. The manner in which Crosdale’s remains were found mirrors the gruesome findings at Haslett’s home, implying a modus operandi that’s either shared or mimicked.

It would also confirm why the Black woman who escaped Haslett’s bondage, named “TJ” in court documents, said two of her friends had been murdered by Haslett. 

In either scenario, the public faces a grim and imminent threat, one that was intentionally downplayed and misrepresented from the onset by police. The urgency for answers, justice, and safety has never been greater. 

Jaynie Crosdale’s untimely and tragic murder, coupled with the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office’s urgent motion yesterday to increase Haslett’s bond to $3 million, paints a haunting picture of a situation far graver than authorities initially suggested. 

Cops Lied & Are Potentially Complicit in Crosdale’s Death

The police’s dismissive response to initial community concerns and their disturbing decision to publicly expose Crosdale as a “potential witness” (publishing her full name and face in an ongoing case) rather than treat her as a potential victim, indicates a profound failure to understand the depth of danger at hand. Not only did this potentially put Jaynie Crosdale in the direct line of harm, leading to her death, but it also left the wider community vulnerable. 

The distinction between labeling Black individuals as victims or witnesses is not merely semantic, but has profound implications for public perception, media coverage, and the urgency of police response. As a Black woman, her initial designation as a “witness” rather than a “victim” or “missing person” was further salt on the wound of a case already laden with racism and neglect on behalf of local police departments. 

This choice of terminology not only misconstrued the reality of Crosdale’s situation, but it also painted her as a possible collaborator in Haslett’s horrific crimes.

Yesterday’s call from the Clay County Prosecutor for “Justice for Jaynie Crosdale” pulls the veil off this linguistic sleight of hand. 

Clay County Prosecutor, Zachary Thompson – Photo by Jason Cole of the Excelsior Citizen

“The family of Ms. Crosdale has been notified, and our hearts go out to them for their loss,” the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement. “Our office is working closely with law enforcement to gather all evidence and information that is needed to build the strongest case possible and deliver justice for Jaynie Crosdale.”

His statement, a drastically different tone from the earlier Excelsior Springs Police Department press release naming her as a “witness” with information about the crime, plainly acknowledges Crosdale’s victimhood.

Undeniably, the reality that emerged from police handling of the case clashes sharply with their initial dismissive statements. Their rush to label the concern as “completely unfounded” now stands exposed in the face of Jaynie Crosdale’s tragic death and the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office Monday statement that there is “greater concern for the safety of the community than had previously been addressed.”

One could reasonably surmise that these law enforcement agencies were more concerned with preserving their own image and managing public relations than in rigorously investigating the claims. The convenient narrative they attempted to craft – isolating the issue to Timothy Haslett Jr. and one kidnapped woman – was ostensibly aimed at curbing public alarm and protecting their institutional credibility.

However, the recent discovery of Jaynie Crosdale’s body has blasted a gaping hole through their carefully crafted narrative. This revelation does more than just expose their previous denial as unfounded; it brings forth a deeply troubling question: Did the police’s obstinate refusal to admit the possibility of a larger threat contribute to endangering the public, including Crosdale herself?

The implications are severe and merit serious reflection. If it is so, they didn’t just fail Crosdale but in fact must be considered complicit in her death. 


Last October, when 23 year old Black woman, “TJ”, escaped from Timothy Haslett Jr.’s sex torture dungeon in Excelsior Springs, she told investigators she had been kidnapped from Prospect Avenue in early September, the exact location and time frame of The Defender’s initial reporting. 

The story rapidly garnered international headlines in outlets like Democracy Now, CNN, the Washington Post, CBS News and more – largely due to the blatant neglect of the police on behalf of the Black community. More importantly however, the crisis of missing Black women as both a local and nationwide issue was brought to the forefront. 

The exposure of the horrific crimes committed by Timothy Haslett Jr., and the subsequent failure of the local police department to effectively manage the crisis, served as a significant blow to the credibility of the law enforcement establishment. The circumstances of this case brought into sharp relief the inherent power dynamics at play in the dissemination of public safety information.

This case has shown that a Black-led startup news outlet, The Defender, and the public information network of Kansas City’s Black community, were not only able to alert the public to the burgeoning crisis but did so far ahead of the police agencies traditionally relied upon for such vital information. It became evident that the notion of the police’s monopoly on public safety information was nothing more than a myth.

When faced with the ramifications of this turn of events, the police department was thrown into a state of alarm. The prospect of their credibility being undermined by entities radically outside the traditional information chain was deeply unsettling. The realization that they were not only being outpaced but also actively contested in the arena of public trust were likely a bitter pill to swallow.

In a move that reeked of desperation, the police department sought to silence the growing concerns of the community and discredit the source from which they were originating. They dismissed the reports as “completely unfounded”, aiming to undermine the credibility of The Defender and stifle the voices of those who had recognized the gravity of the situation. Their strategy, however, was fundamentally flawed. Built on the assumption that evidence substantiating the claims would either be impossible to find or unlikely to surface, they displayed a level of arrogance that ultimately proved to be their downfall.

The chilling escape of a victim from Haslett’s lair shattered the police department’s false narrative and exposed their deceit. The claims they had once dismissed as “completely unfounded” were laid bare as disturbing reality, highlighting their attempts at subterfuge. 

Now, the severity of their actions, or lack thereof, is starkly clear. Their denial and dismissal of the situation have led not only to the tragic loss of Jaynie Crosdale’s life but have also placed the broader public at greater risk. Their actions – built on a foundation of lies – have potentially endangered countless lives, a terrifying consequence of their decision to put their reputation before the safety of the community.

One would think that the KCPD and surrounding police departments would have taken the revelation of TJ’s escape as a learning opportunity and a signal to improve their documentation procedures of missing people, particularly Black missing persons. 

Unfortunately, both KCPD and Excelsior Springs PD did not admit any mistake in the situation, and in fact doubled down on their initial position. 

This might only be hypothetically disappointing if real people’s lives were not at stake. One family in particular is now at the receiving end of this pernicious harm – as they mourn the tragic loss of their loved one, Jaynie Crosdale.

How A Black Woman & Victim Became Criminalized

On January 12, 2023, the Excelsior Springs Police Chief released one of the only updates to the ongoing Timothy Haslett Jr. case since the story first broke last October. 

It read;

“The Excelsior  Springs Police  Department  and  the  Clay County Investigative  Squad have identified 36-year-old Jaynie  M.  Crosdale  as  a  potential  witness in  the Excelsior  Springs  rape  and kidnapping  investigation  involving  Timothy  Haslett,  Jr.,  at  301  Old  Orchard  Avenue.   Ms.  Crosdale’s last known address was in Kansas City, Missouri.  We have been unable to locate Ms. Crosdale, but we believe she has information about the investigation and ask her to contact us as soon as possible.  If anyone has any information regarding Ms. Crosdale’s whereabouts or how we may contact her, please call the TIPSHotline at (816) 474-8477.”

Numerous community members immediately began raising questions about why the police would release the photo of a potential witness in an ongoing case. Additional questions included; how do the police know she’s a witness? If she was a witness wouldn’t that likely mean she is also a victim? Has the family been contacted? If she is in fact a second victim of Haslett, would that confirm claims he is a serial killer? These questions among others began to swirl following the cryptic press release published by the ESPD. 

The Defender got in contact with the family of Crosdale, who told us we were the only outlet they were willing to speak to, given how the other local news outlets participated in the silencing of people like them who were concerned about their missing loved ones at the outset of this story. 

“We are disappointed that she’s being listed as a witness instead of a victim. They got it looking like she was involved,” they said. “They got her looking like a villain.”

The family, like many members of the public, were confused as to why the police would call her a witness without providing any evidence to substantiate their claim. They were particularly disturbed by the fact that the police and the media, by naming her a witness, painted her as likely being complicit in Haslett’s torturous sex crimes. “Why wasn’t she put out there as a missing person? It already hurts bad enough that we can’t find her and that she might not be alive, now we got to deal with people thinking she was a part of that sick thing he had going on? It don’t make any sense,” the family said. 

To make matters worse, the family says the ESPD did not reach out to anyone in their family prior to publishing the press release either. “The first we heard of her being involved in this situation was in the news just like everybody else,” they told us. “When we finally got in contact with police, they made it very clear to us that she could potentially be a victim. So why would they release that other information to the public?”

The family adamantly asserts that the only way Jaynie would have been involved in sex crimes is if she was a victim. “She had nothing to gain from it,” they said, “she was a trustworthy person, you could leave your house open to her and not have to worry about nothing being taken when you get back. So for her to do something that extreme? There’s just absolutely no way.”

If she was one of his victims, they wish the police department would have been forthcoming about what evidence they had earlier on. Instead, they were left in the dark. 

The Kansas City Defender will continue to follow this case closely, demanding transparency and accountability from the police. 

In the face of such horrifying revelations, we remain committed to our community, advocating for their right to safety and the truth. 

We extend our deepest condolences to the Crosdale family and promise that Jaynie Crosdale’s story will not be forgotten.

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