People Magazine Investigates: Parents of Missing Minn. Girl Still Seeking Answers 18 Years Later
Minnesota police believe "somebody knows something" about the day in 2003 that LeeAnna Warner disappeared while walking to a friend's home
The Saturday before Father's Day in 2003, at about 5 p.m., LeeAnna Warner, her sister Karlee and their mother returned to their suburban Chisholm, Minn., home after a day of shopping and swimming.
LeeAnna, then 5, told her mom Kaelin that she wanted to walk around the corner to say good night to her best friend. "It was a normal thing," Kaelin recalls.
But the day turned out to be anything but normal.
Kaelin sent older sister Karlee to bring the girl. "She said, 'Mommy, I can't find her,' " Kaelin says. When Kaelin went to look herself, she found LeeAnna's shoes outside the friend's house, where no one had been at home for LeeAnna's visit.
Eighteen years later, LeeAnna is still missing. The heartbreaking case is explored on tonight's episode of People Magazine Investigates: Little Girl Gone, airing at 10 ET/9 CT on Investigation Discovery and streaming on discovery+. (An exclusive clip is shown below.)
"That was the last time I saw her," Kaelin says of the moment that turned her and her husband Chris Warner's lives upside-down.
In 2020 alone, there were some 365,348 reports of missing kids, according to the FBI. John Bischoff, vice president of the Missing Children Division at the nonprofit National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, says there is "always the hope" of finding them no matter how long they've been missing.
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Vernon Manner, chief of Chisholm Police, who had been with the police department for eight years when LeeAnna disappeared, agrees.
"Somebody knows something," he says. "We're still hopeful."
Anyone with information about the case should call the Chisholm Police Department at 218-254-7915.
People Magazine Investigates: Little Girl Gone, airs tonight at 10 ET/9 CT on Investigation Discovery and streams on discovery+.