The Unsolved Disappearance Of Anthonette Cayedito (1986) - Shreya Sachdev
DISCLAIMER: No disrespect is intended towards anyone that I talk about on this blog post. This blog post is for educational purposes and is being posted on this website in order to raise awareness about this case and to truly hope that the grieving families and friends of these victims find closure and finally find out what happened to their loved one(s). I have gathered all this information on the internet, but unfortunately I do not know how accurate or inaccurate it is. If I have made a mistake somewhere, then I apologize. It is not my intention to spread false information.
Anthonette Cayedito was born on Christmas day in 1976 and she was 9 years old at the time of her disappearance. She lived with her mother, Penny Cayedito, after her mother had divorced Antonette’s father. She also lived with her two younger half sisters named Wendy and Senida. They all lived together in Gallup, New Mexico. Anthonette was said to be a lovely girl, someone who would always look after her younger sisters, take care of the house, and was kind to everyone she met.
On the 9th of April 15th in 1986, Penny Cayedito left all three girls with their babysitter whilst she went to a local bar to meet up with some friends. Penny returned home around midnight and sent home the babysitter. Penny then stayed up until the early hours of the morning talking with Anthonette. In the early hours of the 6th of April, all three girls went to bed together in Penny’s room. The following morning, Penny Cayedito woke up around 7:00am to get the girls ready for bible school when she noticed that Anthonette wasn’t in her room. She didn’t panic right away, as she assumed that Anthonette was somewhere else in the house. However, after searching everywhere, Penny realized that Anthonette was nowhere to be found. She then noticed that the front door was unlocked and the safety screen was unlocked as well, both of which she had remembered locking the night before. Penny and a few of her neighbors went to check outside in some of the surrounding areas but Anthonette was still nowhere to be found. Penny finally decided to call the police.
A massive local search was sent out just two days after Anthonette’s disappearance, but police still did not find anything, have any evidence, or any leads. Police interviewed everyone close to Anthonette, but no one knew anything. One neighbor, however, did say that she saw something. She stated that around 7:00am, she saw a large brown truck pull up outside of the Cayedito house and that someone went and knocked on the door. This neighbor didn’t think much of it because apparently the Cayedito family had people over all the time. Thus, this neighbor saw someone knock on the door and then just went back to her own business. When Penny was asked about this brown truck, she said that she didn’t know anyone who owned a brown truck.
The case soon went cold. Police had no leads and had no evidence against anyone, and so they didn’t know who to look for or what to look for. However, one year later, a phone call was made to the Gallup police department by Anthonette herself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=On3FLJRYlZs (skip to 13:00 to hear the call) in this call, Anthonette is telling police that her name is Anthonette Cayedito and that she is in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Soon, a man in the back is heard shouting “Who said you could use the phone?” and Anthonette is then heard screaming. Police showed Peggy this phone call, and Peggy was immediately sure that this was her daughter’s voice.
Police sent a search in Albuquerque, but found nothing despite the phone call. The case went cold for another four years, until 1991 when a waitress in Carson City, Nevada told police that she believed she had just served Anthonette Cayedito. The waitress reported serving a strange couple who had a 14 year old girl with them. (the same age that Anthonette would have been in 1991) during the course of the meal, Anthonette would drop her utensils on the floor a lot and this waitress would go over and pick them up to put them back on her table. Every time she did, this young girl would grab this waitress’s hand and squeeze it very tightly. The three of them finished up and left the restaurant and that was when the waitress found a note written on the napkin wedged under the plate of where the young girl was sitting that read “help me” and “call the police.”
Although this sighting could not be confirmed to be Anthonette, it was definitely enough to open the case again. All of Anthonette’s family was interviewed again, including her younger sisters who were much older now and all of a sudden seemed to have more information than they previously had. Anthonette’s younger sister, Wendy, who was 5 at the time of Anthonette’s disappearance was now 10 and she finally told police “what she saw” that night. Wendy told police that around 3:00am that morning, there was a knock on the door. Anthonette was still awake and so she went to go see who it was and Wendy followed behind her. Before answering the door, Anthonette called out asking who it was and that was when a man on the other side of the door replied “Uncle Joe” Anthonette believed that this was her Uncle Joe on the other side of the door and so she opened the door and this was when two men grabbed her. Anthonette was screaming and kicking begging them to let her go but these two men took her to a brown man and drove her away. When police asked Wendy why it had taken her so long to tell the police this, Wendy said that she thought she would’ve gotten into trouble. Anthonette did indeed have an Uncle Joe who was questioned, but he had a strong alibi and was immediately cleared as a suspect.
Which theory do I believe?
I 100% believe that Penny Cayedito sold Anthonette Cayedito to another couple who either couldn’t have children or didn’t want to go through the trouble of pregnancy. Let me explain why: I already think it’s strange how the night before Anthonette’s disappearance, Anthonette and Peggy stayed up the entire night talking. This already makes me suspect Peggy as I believe that Peggy wanted to enjoy the last few moments with her daughter until she sold her off to this couple. I believe that due to the fact that Peggy was a single mother raising three children, she was having financial difficulties and needed some money urgently. She decided to sell her eldest daughter because she may have felt a loss of connection with her since Anthonette’s father had treated Peggy so badly. The fact that Wendy and Sendia are from the same father and Anthonette is from a different father already implies that Anthonette may have not been loved the same way that Wendy and Senida were loved. I believe that Peggy told this couple that she would pretend to be asleep, and that Anthonette would be up because Peggy knew that Anthonette would usually wake up very early. Peggy knew that if someone knocked on the door when she was sleeping, Anthonette would go and answer it. Thus, Peggy told this couple to knock on the door around 7:00am, when Peggy knew that Anthonette would go and answer the door. However, Peggy knew that her daughter wouldn’t just answer the door to anyone. This is why Peggy specifically told the couple to pretend that one of them was Uncle Joe, so that Anthonette would open the door. I believe that Wendy is telling the truth, but that this didn’t happen at 3:00am but rather happened at 7:00am. When a neighbor saw a man step out of a brown truck around 7:00am and knock on the Cayedito’s house, I 100% believe that this man is the person who grabbed her and threw her into the truck. It makes sense that Wendy got confused with the timing especially since it was 5 years ago, and it makes sense that Wendy was afraid that these men were going to take her as well which is why it took her so long to tell the police what she knew. I believe that Peggy Cayedito sold Anthonette Cayedito to a couple in exchange for money.
Bibliography & Credit: Neale, Eleanor, director. THE UNSOLVED DISAPPEARANCE OF ANTHONETTE CAYEDITO. YouTube, YouTube, 22 Apr. 2018, www.youtube.com/watch?v=yraPBF77gLc.