Case Study- Part 4b: The Witnesses

This is a continuing series by a guest author who is a 22-year veteran researcher of the Heather Teague case. This study is intended to draw attention to all the chances Kentucky State Police Post 16, Henderson, KY missed or ignored in solving the abduction of Heather Danyelle Teague on August 26, 1995. Also noted are the many important clues KSP is keeping concealed in their investigation file. They claim they must protect their investigation, but after 26 years, it is obvious KSP is protecting it “from” investigation. 

Another witness in the abduction of Heather Teague was Glen Steven Rackley, now deceased. He was camping at Newburgh Beach. Coming back with lunch he stopped the Dill Bronco, being driven by Mike Shelton, now deceased, who he knew.  Mike was married to Marty Dill’s sister, which makes it plausible that he could have been allowed to drive their Bronco. Rackley said the man in the passenger seat was (omitted,) who is related. 

The Bronco was being followed by a red Chevrolet Chevette being driven by a man nicknamed “No No,” who, along with the passenger in the Bronco were known as dangerous drug debt collectors in Webster County. He said the passenger was (omitted,) a neighbor of the Dill’s. Rackley asked about the girl and was told it would be better if you had never seen her. So he kept the secret, even when he was later questioned by police.   

But in 2011, Rackley was in the hospital, dying from a fall from a scissors lift at work. He wanted to clear his conscience, so he told visitors what he had seen that day. He said he regretted never coming forward, but he hadn’t wanted to tell on those guys. RIP Steve Rackley, for making an effort to clear your conscience.

The camper in (Part 4a) noted that both vehicles traveled together west on River Road, and were gone long enough to go to the end, where it dead ends at the Green River, and return. Searchers on Sunday reported to KSP that they found tire tracks at the end of the road, and about 100-150 feet over there was a suspicious looking ten foot circle where the weeds had been flattened, but not like deer beds. The only evidence they found were two cigarette butts and an empty cigarette pack which they didn’t touch. They went to report this find to KSP troopers back at the scene of the abduction. But they didn’t immediately seem that interested. If KSP did eventually collect this evidence, the DNA may lead to whoever abducted Heather. But it might just be backlogged in evidence, like the blood spots FBI found on the Bronco that remained untested at KSP ten years later or Heather’s bikini bottoms that Sarah has had to ask to be retested with modern DNA.

These witnesses’ stories completely contradict KSP’s version of events. Marty Dill had no hair and no beard at the time of the abduction. And no one has described seeing anyone of that description, or anyone wearing a wig or a disguise. Four men in two vehicles wouldn’t abduct a young woman and “parade” the victim down River Road and back, around noon on a Saturday in late August, meeting dozens of people driving to the beach or parked along River Road. They wouldn’t risk being recognized. 

KSP Trooper Cline was actually on Newburgh Beach, a mile downstream, about the time Heather was abducted. Jim boy Allen’s tape shows the trooper’s cruiser being pulled out of the sand by a jeep, just after he taped Heather’s car and the Bronco. Trooper Cline was responding to a report of a truck stuck in the edge of the river. If he had happened to pull out on to River Road at the moment when the Bronco and the Chevette were passing by, with Heather in the passenger seat, all four men could have been caught, and Heather might still be with us. 

So, this apparently wasn’t intended to be a kidnapping or a murder. Some say they wanted to know where the money or drugs went, but if she had money she wouldn’t have been living in her car. Friends said she had been pressured into working as a narc. Maybe police confiscated the drugs or money that her abductors were looking for, and she couldn’t admit she was working as a narc, without suffering even worse consequences.

In an Aug. 3, 2020 segment of this blog: The beginning of the end: is FBI SAC James N. Hendricks involved in the disappearance of Heather Teague, a friend of Heather’s recounts how: “off-duty Henderson, KY police officer, James Hendricks, showed up at the same time as Heather, at their party at the Penny Tree in Union County. But he brought the liquor and pot, so we really didn’t give it a second thought. There were several occasions where Heather would meet James at Hayes Boat Ramp at Atkinson Park to talk about the next job he had for her to do. Some of the jobs…would be dancing for private parties with (omitted) or doing drug runs.” 

In this blog, is the Feb. 2009 account where FBI agents, James Hendricks and Jerry Garner, visited Sarah Teague’s home. In a recorded conversation, Hendricks attempted to explain away the rumor that when he was an HPD officer, he met with Heather at Hayes Boat Ramp, the night before her abduction. Hendricks’ wife had told someone at church, who relayed it to Sarah. Sarah then contacted Lt. John Nevels who had been Hendricks boss at HPD in 1995. Nevels said he recalled that Hendricks found Heather sleeping in her car at Haye’s boat ramp the night before she was abducted. He said he discussed it with other officers in his office, how if Hendricks had arrested Heather that night, then she couldn’t have been abducted the next day. Lt. John Nevels was chosen Detective of the year for that year (1995.) 

Hendricks, explained to Sarah, that the night he found Heather at Hayes Boat Ramp was actually about three weeks prior to her abduction. He said that when he got out to check, he signed out with his dispatcher, and that he ran her ID, and there weren’t any warrants. Those two HPD records might clear up the discrepancy about the date — if we could get these records. But what about her friends claims that Hendricks was having her dance for private parties and do drug runs? Who watches over the police? No one, as one fiery advocate used to say. RIP Betty Jean. You are sorely missed.

We do have Hendricks employment records with HPD, though he initially attempted to block an Open Records Request for them. They show Hendricks took off half the week following Heather’s abduction, and all of the following week, after Dill’s reported suicide. Is that what he didn’t want released? Or maybe it was his history, working two summers at Ellis Park Raceway. Maybe that’s where he met the backers who put him on such a fast track with FBI.   

After the two FBI agents left her home, Sarah called Lt. Nevels again to verify that Hendricks had met Heather at the boat ramp the night before she was abducted. He verified the date, again. 

A professional investigator helping with the case said he thought it was odd that two FBI agents used federal time to come to Sarah Teague’s home to explain a rumor from back when one had been a road officer with Henderson PD. He doubted that FBI would have ok’d that.

On April 13, 2021, an Associated Press report named this same “James N. Hendricks, former special agent in charge of the FBI field office headquarters in Albany, N.Y, a ‘skilled predator’ FBI boss who sexually harassed eight female subordinates.” He quietly retired and now writes a law enforcement blog. 

If James Hendricks is no longer under the protection of FBI, it may be time to investigate his relationship with Heather Teague. If HPD records show he met Heather the night before she was abducted, her abduction could have had something to do with their relationship, which her friends said was connected to dancing at private parties and doing drug runs. It definitely needs to be investigated. 

Hendricks wasn’t a detective. So why was involved in such risky behavior? Maybe he was already protected, working undercover for DEA, FBI or CIA. One knowledgable source claimed that Heather was hired by the Democratic party.

It’s suspicious that when he and Jerry Garner visited Sarah’s home in 2009, he was Garner’s boss, yet Garner had 8 years seniority, and a JD, and a MS degree. How did James Hendricks get off to such a fast start with FBI? FBI supposedly had him investigating child porn. And he was an FBI evidence response team leader at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001. He managed an FBI cybercrime division, and led an undercover operation in Bowling Green, Ky, that caught two refugees from Iraq, who were said to be members of al Qaeda. 

If anyone knows more about Hendricks or his relationship with Heather, please comment on this blog or contact Sarah Teague.