Disappearance of mother, daughter reclassified as homicide

Disappearance of mother, daughter reclassified as homicide (Image 1)

The unexplained disappearance of a mother and her young daughter nearly a decade ago in Robertson County has been reclassified as a homicide.

Jennifer Wix and her two-year-old daughter Adrianna were reported missing on March 27, 2004.

At the time they were living in an out building on property belonging to Wix’s boyfriend, Joey Benton.

Benton claimed that on the evening of March 25, 2004, Wix asked him to take her to a grocery store in Cross Plains to use the phone.

Benton said he did so, and then dropped mother and daughter off at a local Exxon.  Benton said he pulled across the street and watched as a white four-door car pulled up and Jennifer and Adrianna got inside.

Benton also claimed that on March 26, 2004, Jennifer showed up back at his property, collected her belongings and said that she needed some time away.

Despite countless hours of investigation and numerous interviews over the past nine years, Benton’s assertions of taking Jennifer and Adrianna to the grocery store, the Exxon and then seeing Jennifer on the following day were never independently confirmed.

The last person known to have spoken to Jennifer was her father, Michael, who, phone records confirm, talked with her at approximately 11 a.m. on March 25, 2004.

Michael Wix told detectives that his daughter spoke of arguing with Benton’s family and that she looked forward to seeing him in Manchester on the following Sunday.  He has not heard from Jennifer since.

In the months that followed Jennifer and Adrianna’s disappearance, Benton’s property in Robertson County has been searched on four separate occasions.  A pond on the land was even drained and searched.

While the Robertson County Sheriff’s Office has treated the case as a homicide since the early days of the investigation it has now finally been officially reclassified as a homicide from a missing person case.

Robertson County Sheriff Bill Holt said no one, including Benton, has been eliminated as having potential involvement in the disappearance of Wix and her daughter.

Anyone in the community with information about what happened is urged to come forward.

“I strongly believe that there are persons in this community who know what happened to Jennifer and Adrianna, but who have been reluctant to come forward for one reason or another. We today strongly encourage our citizens to help us provide answers and closure to the family, and, as circumstances warrant, justice to these two young persons who chose to live in our area,” Sheriff Holt said.

A special tip line has been set up so anyone with information can directly contact investigators working the case at 615-478-5763.  Anonymous tips can also be submitted online.

There is a $17,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual or individuals responsible.

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