Today marks eight weeks since 16-year-old Karlie Gusé wandered away from her family home in Chalfant, California, without a trace, leaving her family and friends with many questions about her safety and whereabouts.
Karlie’s stepmother, Melissa Gusé, told investigators she observed Karlie in bed around 5:30 in the morning on October 13, 2018. When she checked on Karlie again between 7:15 and 7:30, Karlie was nowhere to be found. She had left behind all of her personal belongings, including her cell phone, before walking away from the property. The teen had told her parents the night before, she had attended a party with her boyfriend, and smoked marijuana. Karlie’s stepmother and father, Zachary Gusé, told investigators Karlie was likely disoriented at the time of her disappearance. Her minor boyfriend told the Las Vegas Review that after consuming marijuana, Karlie became paranoid, “She got scared of the music. She got scared of me.” Karlie called Melissa around 9:00 PM to pick her up.
Because there was no evidence of abduction at the time Karlie was reported missing, no Amber Alert was issued. Law enforcement have issued statements declaring they are treating Karlie’s case as a missing persons investigation. A canvas of the Gusé’s neighborhood yielded three witnesses who place Karlie in the neighborhood around the time her parents realized she was missing. These witnesses claimed Karlie was wearing gray sweatpants and a white t-shirt, while heading towards Highway 6, the nearest major traffic vein, before she vanished. Footprints believed to be Karlie’s were found near Highway 6.
Karlie’s biological mother, Lindsey Fairley, described the hole left in her life where her daughter once stood, “We were always really open. We were literally best friends. She could talk to me about anything. She is absolutely loved by everybody that knows her. She’s such a sweet girl. She’s funny.” Her boyfriend shared a Facebook post, pleading with Karlie to come home:
“Words can not explain how much I miss you. I want to know your okay. I want to hold you in my arms. I want to lay your head on my chest and be in your presence because the only thing that can ever make me happy is you! You give me a purpose in this life. Come home so I can look into those beautiful, gorgeous, big blue eyes and see your amazing smile, and wrap you in my arms.”
Police have reiterated through press conferences and Facebook posts they are leaving no stone unturned in their search for Karlie, ruling out no single explanation for the teen’s disappearance. As far as Karlie’s family is concerned, it depends on who you ask. Melissa Gusé said in a Facebook video, which has since disappeared from public view, she believes Karlie was abducted in light of the confirmed sighting near Highway 6. Karlie’s father echoed her sentiment, “I don’t understand any of this. I don’t think she would run away. I don’t believe she would. But you can’t rule anything out. I think it’s possible someone took her. I think it’s possible she ran away.”
Lindsey Fairley remarks on her daughter’s disappearance, “There’s times I just don’t have the energy to cry. Nighttime is just so hard for me, because I pray that she is warm and safe and nourished. And I just pray that nobody has hurt her. I never thought I’d be dealing with this. It was always my worst nightmare—whose isn’t—to have a child missing. I don’t have enemies, but if I did, I wouldn’t wish it on them.”
Karlie Gusé is described as being 5’7” and weighing 110 lbs., with dark blond hair and blue eyes. She was wearing a white t-shirt and gray sweatpants at the time she went missing. If you have any information surrounding Karlie’s disappearance, please call the Mono County Sheriff’s Office at 760-932-7549 and select option seven. Please share this story on the social media platform of your choice to increase the chances of finding Karlie.
Carie McMichael is the Communication and Media Specialist for Lauth Investigations International. She regularly covers investigation and missing persons topics. For more information, please visit our website.