ARLINGTON, IN – The remains of Valerie Tindall, a 17-year-old girl who disappeared in June, have been positively identified by an Indiana coroner. The body was discovered this week on a property owned by 59-year-old Patrick Scott, who is now facing criminal charges in relation to her death. The Rush County Coroner, Brenda McMahan, stated that the final determination of the cause and manner of Valerie’s death is pending the results of toxicology tests and a comprehensive autopsy report.
The Rush County Sheriff’s Office released a statement on Thursday, expressing their deepest condolences to Valerie Tindall’s family and friends during this challenging time. Simultaneously, they announced the charges against Scott, which included murder, obstruction of justice, and false information. Following these charges, a judge ordered that Scott be held without bond. A public defender was appointed to represent Scott during his initial hearing. When contacted for comment on the case, the Rush County Public Defender’s office declined to make a statement.
Valerie Tindall was known to have worked for Scott, who operates a lawn-mowing business in the area. Court documents indicate that on June 7, the day she went missing, Valerie had told her parents that she was heading to work. In a chilling confession to the police, Scott later admitted that he drove Valerie back to his home in Arlington, a rural community located approximately 30 miles southeast of Indianapolis. According to Scott, he strangled Valerie with his belt in his bedroom when she allegedly tried to blackmail and seduce him.
In the months following Valerie’s disappearance, numerous searches were conducted to locate her. On October 11, cadaver-sniffing dogs were brought in, indicating the smell of decomposition near a pond on Scott’s property. Despite this lead, the search did not yield any significant findings. However, on Tuesday, investigators found a large pile of dirt and debris on Scott’s property. Upon further investigation, they unearthed a rectangular box wrapped in a tarp, which contained human remains later identified as Valerie’s.
Speaking to journalists, Valerie’s mother, Shena Sandefur, expressed her shock and grief over the tragic discovery. The family trusted Scott, their neighbor, and Valerie’s employer. She described Valerie and Scott as friends, stating that Valerie worked for him and frequently spent time with his family.