Solved Mysteries That Seem Strange Even For Us

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Vote up the strangest solved mysteries.

Most of us love a good mystery, especially the solved ones. It is the unsolved cases that get your goat, with the endless what-ifs and whodunits. Whether it's a real-life mystery or a plot in a movie, a puzzle solved always makes for easier breathing in the end. 

But sometimes, solving a mystery does not answer all the questions or bring closure. You may know who did it, but why remains an enigma. Or in the case of a family tragedy, you may have all the answers, but still feel unsettled or simply sad about what happened.

Here are some solved mysteries that don't offer a satisfying sense of closure.


  • 1
    1,525 VOTES

    A Man Appeared To Have Died Of Natural Causes, Until Investigators Saw His Scrotum

    In 2010, Greg Fleniken was relaxing, alone, in Room 348 of the MCM Eleganté Hotel in Beaumont, TX, after work. A well-liked character and man of simple routine, he was smoking a cigarette and eating a candy bar when pain struck. 

    Fleniken got up and reached for the door, but crumpled on the hotel floor instead. The next morning, his wife made the hotel staff open the door when he would not pick up her calls. He had perished. The police thought it was natural causes, but the medical examiner, on performing the autopsy, found massive internal damage. According to him, Fleniken might have been beaten. 

    Private detective Ken Brennan uncovered the truth. Lance Mueller and his friends were next door in Room 349. Mueller was drunk and playing with a loaded gun when it went off. He thought nothing of it - even after the body was discovered next door.

    The bullet had passed through the wall of the adjoining rooms and entered Fleniken's scrotum, eventually lodging in his heart and bursting the right atrium. The examiner had missed the entry point of the bullet because scrotal skin is soft and tends to overlap around any wound. Plus, he had missed the bullet wound to the heart. Authorities found an indentation where the bullet might have passed through the two rooms, which was patched up with toothpaste.

    They knew the truth, but wanted a conviction. So they convinced Tim Steinmetz, who had been with Mueller in the room that day, to call him wearing a wire. Mueller eventually got 10 years in prison. 

    1,525 votes
  • 2
    1,689 VOTES

    Police Suspected A Man Killed His Mother, But Eventually His Bizarre Hitchhiker Story Was Confirmed

    Unsolved Mysteries reported on the case of Charles Holden, a factory worker from Harrington, DE. In June 1991, as Holden left a diner after work, a man asked him for a ride because his sister was in a Georgetown hospital having a baby. Holden agreed, but stopped his truck close to his house, telling the man the ride ended there.

    The man flew into a rage and went after Holden with a screwdriver. Holden tried to get away, but the man ran after him, so Holden calmed him down. As they walked back to the truck, Holden sprinted and got into the truck, driving to safety. 

    Wary, he drove around aimlessly to make sure the man could not trace him back to his house. But when he finally got home, he saw the same hitchhiker. Alarmed, he went to a pay phone and called the police. An officer and Holden checked his home and found it secure, but Holden was worried about his mother, Dorothy Donovan, who lived in a trailer behind his house. 

    When they checked on Donovan, she was lying on her bed, stabbed and no longer alive. Investigators first believed Holden was responsible because they could not verify his story or find the hitchhiker. Because Holden was also a beneficiary of a life insurance policy in Donovan's name, authorities thought he had concocted an elaborate plot. 

    But when they found a bloodstain in Donovan's trailer that did not match Holden's blood, he was gradually eliminated as a suspect. It took 14 years for the truth to come out. In 2005, a DNA search via the CODIS (Combined DNA Index System) database showed a match with a 41-year-old man named Gilbert Cannon from Maryland. At the time, Cannon was living in Delaware. 

    When interrogated, Cannon confessed he was high on coke at the time and was looking for a place to stay. He broke into Donovan's trailer thinking it was empty because the lights were out, but when he saw her, he took her life to avoid identification. Cannon was surprised to know she was the mother of the man who had given him a ride. 

    1,689 votes
  • 3
    1,194 VOTES

    A Woman Solved Her Own Kidnapping Case 23 Years After It Happened

    When Nejdra "Netty" Nance was 17 and pregnant in Bridgeport, CT, she asked her mother, Ann Pettway, for her birth certificate so she could receive prenatal care from the state. When Pettway kept procrastinating about giving her the document, Nance decided to visit the Bureau of Vital Statistics in New Haven herself, providing her birthdate and name. No records were found, and officials came to her house to speak to Pettway.

    After the meeting, Pettway told Nance she was not her birth mother, and that Nance's mom had left her daughter and never come back. Pettway said she did not remember anything more, and the pregnant teen took in the news and tried to go on with her life, especially after giving birth to her daughter, Samani. 

    When Nance shared this story with an aunt she was close to, the aunt advised her to keep looking. Nance scoured the web for missing children, using her birthdate as a reference. She wondered if DNA could help, but was told that tactic was "TV stuff." She then searched the website of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and found a picture of a missing baby girl who looked just like her daughter Samani when she was an infant.

    This meant Nance could be that missing baby girl. She contacted the center, and over time, via a birthmark and DNA tests, Nance learned she was Carlina White, the missing daughter of Joy and Carl White. Nance had been taken by Pettway from the hospital when she was 19 days old; the reunion with her birth parents took place 23 years later. 

    It sounds like a happy ending, but Netty/Carlina still had feelings for Pettway, and getting close to Carl did not come easy to her, although she did bond with Joy.

    Pettway gave herself up and was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Nance, who now officially goes by Carlina White, is a motivational speaker and Instagram model, although the last time she spoke publicly was at a 2014 conference.

    1,194 votes
  • 4
    1,332 VOTES

    A Drought Solved A 40-Year-Old Mystery

    When high school students Pamela Jackson and Cheryl Miller went missing in 1971 from South Dakota, the worst was assumed. Police, with the help of informants, thought David Lykken, who was already serving a prison sentence for rape and kidnapping, might have been involved.

    Jackson's neighbor reported overhearing a conversation between a "David" and Jackson in which Jackson mentioned David slamming her hand in a car door. Lykken's sister seemed to recall, under hypnosis, the bodies of Jackson and Miller at their family farm, and claimed that her parents often covered for her brother. Later, a jailhouse informant wore a wire and supposedly got a confession from Lykken, but it wasn't Lykken's voice on the tape, and the confession was obviously false.

    Police searched the Lykken farm but found no evidence that linked David Lykken to the disappearance of the two 17-year-olds. Even so, a case was made and charges were added to Lykken's record. 

    In 2013, when a drought hit the state, the water level dropped at Brule Creek in South Dakota, revealing an overturned, sunken car. When authorities fished it out, it turned out to be a 1960 Studebaker Lark with skeletal remains in the front seat. 

    Documents, clothes, and DNA helped identify the remains as Jackson and Miller. The charges were dropped against Lykken.  Investigators said the evidence points to a high-speed road accident.

    1,332 votes
  • 5
    934 VOTES

    A Man Who Had Been Missing For A Decade Could Be Seen On Google Maps

    Davie Lee Niles, 72, had been missing since October 11, 2006, from Byron Township, MI. Allegedly, he left a bar, then vanished into thin air. At the time, he had bone cancer and depression. 

    Authorities could not make any headway in the case. But in 2015, a maintenance worker spotted something strange in the Cook Funeral Home pond while using a lift to install Christmas lights. It looked like a car submerged in the water, also visible on Google Maps (pictured). 

    The Kent County Sheriff's Office sent over a crew to pull the vehicle from the pond. Skeletal remains of a body were found behind the steering wheel, with Niles's wallet. 

    After an autopsy, no foul play was suspected, and authorities also could not say whether the incident was an accident or suicide. No one knows how Niles and his car ended up in the pond without anyone noticing.

    934 votes
  • 6
    916 VOTES

    The Swedish Navy Mistook Fish Gas For Russian Submarines

    For years, the Swedish Navy assumed that Russian spy submarines were entering their waters. It all started when an S-363, a Soviet Whiskey-class coastal patrol submarine, mistakenly entered Swedish waters in 1981. 

    The Russians claimed it was a mistake, brought on by a faulty navigation system, but the Swedes were not convinced, because steering in those waters had to be precise lest the submarine run into rocks. When the Russians tried to send more ships and subs, a tense 10-day standoff ensued. The Swedes finally let the Russian sub go.

    For years, the Swedish navy kept "hearing" Russian submarines via underwater sonar and other acoustics, but never saw, spotted, or caught one. Prime Minister Carl Bildt exchanged some cold correspondence with President Boris Yeltsin, but Russia denied everything.

    Finally, the navy called in external experts, who discovered that the "submarines" they heard were fish passing gas. The sounds were schools of herring fish using FRTs, as in fast repetitive ticks, as a way to communicate in the darkness. 

    916 votes