Teen Girl Who Vanished While Walking Home From Work Is Found Stabbed to Death at Creek

Oregon police arrested a man last Thursday for murdering an 18-year-old girl who was found stabbed to death a week earlier.

Kendra Hanks, 18, was reported missing on July 8, a day after she did not return home from work. Suspect Troy Phelps, 39, was accused of picking up Hanks in Roseburg before stabbing her to death, according to KEZI.

Surveillance footage reportedly showed Hanks getting into Phelps’ vehicle, though it is unclear whether she was forced into the car. Video reportedly also showed Hanks — in distress — sitting in the passenger seat with the window rolled down. KEZI reported that Phelps’ car was also seen circling the neighborhood on the day Hanks vanished.

According to The News-Review, the footage showed Phelps driving around Riddle, though it is unclear when Hanks is no longer in the car.

On July 13, Hanks’ body was found at Cow Creek with puncture wounds on her chest and neck. Her cellphone was located near her body, according to KEZI.

Phelps was arrested on July 21, after investigators learned of an open 911 call that was placed at his home in Riddle. During the welfare check, Phelps’ clothes matched the man who was seen picking up Hanks days earlier. The News-Review reported that a vehicle resembling the car seen driving around Hanks’ neighborhood on July 7 was found in Phelps’ driveway.

Phelps is charged with first- and second-degree murder, kidnapping, and resisting arrest.

KEZI reported that Phelps had been charged with murder for fatally shooting a man in 2017. He was acquitted of murder in 2020, but he was convicted of reckless burning and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The News-Review reported that Phelps is being represented by the same attorney that got him acquitted of murder in 2020.

For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast. Listen to the latest episode:

Join Nancy Grace for her new online video series designed to help you protect what you love most — your children.

[Featured image: Kendra Hanks/Douglas County Sheriff’s Office]