Missing woman remembered 23 years on
Wednesday, 23 September 2009 09:43

Last seen leaving job at Eastpoint Mall in 1986

 by Joseph M. Giordano

    The disappearance of Bernadette Caruso is one of Baltimore County’s most perplexing cold cases.
    Caruso was last seen walking out of Eastpoint Mall to her car on Sept. 27, 1986, when she vanished.
    “There were no clues or evidence to go on,” said Baltimore County Police Department spokesman Bill Toohey, who remembers the incident well. “She simply disappeared. We interviewed everyone, her friends, her ex-husband, everybody. This case has never officially closed, but we do suspect foul play.”

 At the time of her disappearance, her co-workers at Shaw’s Jewelers told police that Caruso had received a call from her ex-husband and was due to meet him.
    Police have never found  a trace of the then-23-year-old Caruso or her car.
    Caruso’s 76-year-old mother, Patricia Stevenson, who still lives on North Boundary Road, still is hopeful that police will find out what happened to her daughter.
    “I believe in miracles,” Stevenson said Monday. “I haven’t given up hope.”
    Our Lady of Hope Church held an annual vigil for Bernadette until 2002, her mother said.
    “They haven’t done it for a while,” Stevenson said. “I’m too old [to participate] anyway. But I miss Bernadette every day”
    Nothing, according to Stevenson, ever came of the family’s attempt in 2006 to have a grand jury investigate the disappearance.
    “What could they look into?” she said. “There’s no car, no body, nothing. It’s hard to get anyone to do anything.”
    The disappearance remains one of the county’s most elusive criminal cases, according to Toohey.
    “Someone out there must know something,” Toohey said. “They must come forward and get it off their conscience.”