CRIME
07/14/2011 08:01 am ET | Updated Sep 13, 2011

Missouri Woman Jessica Bullock Searches For Missing Mother, Stepdad

The daughter of a Missouri woman who, along with her husband, mysteriously vanished without a trace more than two months ago is desperate for national media outlets to take an interest in the case.

"We have done everything we know to get their story and picture out there. We have contacted national television stations but have not gotten any response ... My family is desperate," Jessica Bullock told The Huffington Post.

Bullock's mother, Rebecca Porter, 46, and her husband, Russell Porter, 34, disappeared from their rural Willard home in April. Despite a massive police investigation, their current whereabouts remain a mystery.

"I spoke with my mom on the night of Sunday, April 17, and she said she did not feel well. She told me she thought she had food poisoning, the stomach flu or something like that. I told her maybe she should go to an emergency room and she told me she would see how she felt in the morning and then decide," Bullock said.

The following day, Bullock repeatedly phoned her mother but was unable to reach her. After she completed her shift at work, she continued to try to reach her to no avail. With darkness, her concern turned to worry, and around 11 p.m. Bullock made the 45-minute drive to her mother's home.

"Her car was in [the] driveway and there were a couple lights on inside [the] house," she said. "I knocked on the doors but did not get a response. I knew something wasn't right and I called 911."

When deputies from the Greene County Sheriff's Office arrived on the scene, they entered the home. They did not find any sign of the Porters, but they did discover their personal items, including Rebecca Porter's purse and cellphone, inside the home. The keys to Rebecca Porter's Mustang were also found in the ignition of the vehicle, which was parked in the driveway.

"When I went into the house with the detectives there was a strong smell of bleach in the air," Bullock said. "In the kitchen area it about knocked you over, that's how strong it was."

Bullock said authorities also discovered evidence of tampering with the surveillance cameras mounted both inside and outside the home.

"I had no idea the [cameras] were even there," Bullock said. "I guess they had put them up a month or so before this. I'm not sure why."

Authorities questioned Russell Porter's mother, who lives directly behind the house, but she said she did not see anything out of the ordinary. Investigators spent three days going over the Porter home and recovered 210 pieces of potential evidence. The sheriff's department, along with the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Ozarks Correctional Center, also conducted a search of the 120-acre property and the adjoining area, but found no sign of the missing couple.

Authorities have been tight-lipped on the status of the investigation and calls to the sheriff's department were not returned.

"My mom works at Fantastic Caverns, a big cave not too far from her house. Russell does not work. He is a computer person -- online all the time," Bullock said.

"I really don't know what to think," she added. "They really didn't have a lot of friends. As far as my mom goes, her family was her life. Her 10 brothers and sisters, along with me and my brother. She really did not have a lot of friends outside the family."

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There has been some speculation in the community that the Porters disappearance might be linked to the April 25 slaying of Don and Helen Willingham, two elderly missionaries who were stabbed to death inside their home southwest of Springfield, Mo.

Sheriff Jim Arnott, however, has called the Willingham slayings a random crime and on Saturday said he was holding two persons of interest in that case on an unrelated crime. He declined to provide any further information.

Prior to their disappearance, the Porters were involved in some sort of dispute with Russell Porter's uncle, Robert Campbell, who lives on the same 120-acre property. Both parties had been granted protection orders and were instructed to stay away from each other. The reason behind the orders, however, remains unclear.

"Almost a month before they went missing, they filed a restraining order against his uncle and he did the same to them. I don't know why. I just know they argued a lot," Bullock said.

Authorities have not named Campbell as a suspect or a person of interest in the case. They are also not revealing any details of the investigation to any of the Porters' family members.

"They have been very hush, hush," Bullock said. "They're not telling us anything. I know they are working hard, I do know that, but it is just getting aggravating that nothing is being told to us."

In an effort to help find answers, Bullock has reached out to Janis McCall, founder of One Missing Link, an organization that helps families of missing people. McCall founded the organization after the unsolved 1992 disappearances of her daughter, Stacy McCall, and two other women, Sherrill Levitt and Suzie Streeter -- the "Springfield Three," as the case has been called.

"McCall has been helping us raise awareness and pass out missing person flyers," Bullock said. Still, she is hoping for increased coverage of the case.

"Only local media has covered it. We need to get their picture out there because they could be anywhere," Bullock said.

Rebecca is described as a white female, 5 feet 7 inches tall, 140 pounds, with blonde hair and blue eyes. She has a tanned complexion and was last seen wearing pajamas or khaki pants and a yellow shirt with a "Fantastic Caverns" imprint.

Russell is a white male, 6 feet 2 inches tall, 180 pounds, with brown hair, blue eyes and facial hair. He was last seen wearing blue nylon sweatpants and a red or blue T-shirt.

According to Bullock, a $20,000 reward is being offered in the case. Anyone with information is asked to call the Greene County Sheriff at 417-868-4040.

"It's still a shock that it has happened," Bullock said. "It's on my mind constantly. My mom is my best friend. This is horrible and I hate it."

Rusty and Rebecca Porter