The Disappearance of Kyron Horman

June 4th, 2010 was an exciting day for seven-year-old Kyron Horman. It was the last day of school, and also the day of the annual science fair. Kyron, a science enthusiast, was looking forward to showing off his project about red-eyed tree frogs. After presenting his project, Kyron missed his first class and was marked absent for the day. He was never seen again.


Kyron Horman was born on September 9th, 2002 in Portland, Oregon. His parents, Desiree Young and Kaine Horman, divorced before he was born, but the two shared custody of Kyron. Desiree was then diagnosed with kidney failure in 2004 and was repeatedly hospitalized, making her unable to properly care for Kyron. Kaine Horman took full custody, but Desiree still remained in Kyron’s life. In 2007, Kaine married a substitute teacher named Terri Moulton. The couple had a daughter, Kiara, in December of 2008. 


On the morning of the science fair, Kyron’s father had to work, but he promised Kyron they would go out for ice cream after school to celebrate Kyron’s hard work. Terri took Kyron to school around 8 am. She took photos of him standing in front of his science project that she would later post on Facebook. At 8:45 am, Terri claimed she watched Kyron walking to his first class of the day. She then left the school to run errands until 10:10 am. She had to get medicine for Kiara’s ear infection, but the first store she went to did not have it, so she went to another store. Surveillance footage shows her at both stores with no signs of Kyron. From 10:10 am until about 11:40 am, Terri claimed she was driving around the rural roads of the Oregon wilderness, attempting to lull her daughter to sleep. However, no one could confirm her whereabouts during this time. Terri then traveled to a 24-hour gym and dropped her daughter off at the on-site daycare center at 12:40. They arrived home at around 1:20 pm, and Terri posted the pictures from Kyron’s science fair on Facebook. At 3:30 pm, Kaine, Terri, and Kiara walked to Kyron’s bus stop. The bus driver informed the family that Kyron never boarded the bus and advised them to call the school. The school secretary revealed that Kyron had been marked absent for the day. This meant that Kyron never made it to the class that Terri claimed she watched him walk to. The family hurried to Skyline Elementary, and Kyron was reported missing at 3:45 pm.


I know from personal experience that if a student is marked tardy or absent in today’s day and age, the student’s parents are informed almost immediately. So why weren’t Kyron’s parents called when he was marked absent? Kyron’s teacher believed that Kyron would be absent that day due to a doctor’s appointment that Terri informed the school about a few days before. However, Terri claimed the doctor’s appointment wasn’t until June 11th - a week after school would let out for summer. Why would Terri inform the school about a doctor’s appointment that wasn’t even during school?


Police responded quickly to the report of a seven-year-old boy who hadn’t been seen for seven hours. The initial search began at 4:30 pm on June 4th and lasted until June 14th. 300 trained rescuers combed the wooded grounds surrounding Skyline Elementary, and they were joined by 1,300 searchers from Oregon, Washington, and California, making it Oregon’s largest search effort to date. Every single student and staff member at Skyline was questioned by police. Every square inch of Kyron’s school and home were searched extensively. There was no sign of Kyron anywhere. 


While searching for answers regarding Kyron, investigators found out that Terri attempted to hire the family’s landscaper to murder her husband, Kaine. Rodolfo Sanchez, the landscaper, testified that Terri approached him about killing her husband in January of 2010, five months before Kyron disappeared. However, when Terri’s lawyer asked Sanchez if Terri asked him to kill her husband outside of the court, Sanchez said no. It was then discovered that the defense attorney threatened to deport Sanchez and his family if he did not participate in the testimony. On June 28th, Kaine Harmon filed for divorce and was granted a restraining order against Terri. Terri reluctantly moved out of the home she used to share with Kaine, Kyron, and Kiara. Between Kyron’s disappearance and the divorce, Terri failed two polygraph tests regarding Kyron.


In July 2010, a few of Terri’s close friends were subpoenaed by the Multnomah County grand jury. One of these friends included Dede Spicher, who, according to Kaine Horman and Desiree Young, provided Terri with advice that “was not in the best interests of our son.” On the day Kyron disappeared, Dede claimed she had been working a gardening job at a home in northwest Portland all day. However, the homeowner came forward and told investigators that Dede left abruptly around 11:30 am and returned around 1 pm. She also allegedly helped Terri buy an untraceable cell phone.


Kaine Horman and Desiree Young believe that Terri was involved in Kyron’s disappearance. Just days after Kyron went missing, Terri was sending texts and emails to friends about what had happened on June 4th. She wrote in one message, “I left the school at 9 amd he was seen with a man ‘chaperone’ and 2 girls after I left. There were no men on the chaperone list.” The police captain at the time saw this as an inappropriate use of her time, that is, already making an alibi.


In July of 2012, Desiree Young filed a lawsuit against Terri claiming she was responsible for Kyron’s disappearance. A year later, Desiree dropped the lawsuit as to not interfere with the ongoing investigation. 


In September of 2016, Terri appeared as a guest on Dr. Phil, and claimed she was told by law enforcement to lie about the state of her marriage if she was ever approached by the media.

Sadly, no concrete evidence of Terri being involved in Kyron’s disappearance has been found. Kyron has been missing for nearly ten years today.