Sherri Papini's Old Schoolmate Vanished 18 Years Ago While Jogging, Never To Be Seen Again

A shocking new story has come to light in regards to the Sherri Papini abduction.

One of the California mom's former high school classmates, Tera Smith, was the victim of a disturbingly similar situation. Tera, who was 16 at the time, went out for a jog in Redding, California.

She vanished, and was never seen again.

Sherri had a luckier outcome, and was released on Thanksgiving morning.

While the two cases have similar circumstances, Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko has said that the investigators "have not developed any evidence the two cases are linked."

In the days after Sherri's abduction, her husband, Keith, reached out to Tera Smith's father in order to get some advice on how to handle the situation.

“Keith came to me, and we spoke for about an hour,” Tera's father, Terry Smith, said while talking with People magazine. “I just told him to stay strong for his kids and not assume law enforcement has the answers and to push them.

“It was obvious Keith was torn up,” Terry said, “and I believe he was confident he’d get his wife back.”

Terry Smith also mentioned that Sherri's abduction brought back all too familiar emotions that were difficult to handle.

He said Sherri's case "brought back some very vivid memories and our hearts went out to Keith and his kids." Smith continued by saying, "We know how it feels. That hopelessness and having nothing to go on is familiar."

When the Smiths heard that Sherri was found, they were absolutely thrilled. "I can't tell you how thrilled we were," Smiths said. "It's bittersweet. We didn't have that kind of outcome."

Despite how similar each case seems on the surface, Terry Smith explained that there are details regarding his daughter's disappearance that aren't quite as mysterious.

Smith has indicated that he knows who is responsible for Tera's abduction. He believes that a man who has never been charged and denies involvement was guilty of the horrible crime.

Terry Smith said that on the night his daughter disappeared, she was planning on meeting up with her 29-year-old martial arts instructor boyfriend, Charles Troy Zink. He says that Tera intended to break off their relationship.

According to The Redding Herald Record, Zink pleaded guilty to a felony rape charge in the early '90s. He served 300 days in jail.

Terry said that when Tera called it quits with Zink, the man "saw this could go bad for him, and I think he killed her and disposed of the body."

He has formed this theory around the fact that he found discovered an unmailed letter found in Tera's room in the days after she vanished.

"She tells him in the letter she knows she made a huge mistake, she never should have gotten involved with him, that she didn't want to leave this life and hang her head in shame," Terry said. "This letter was never delivered, and rather than give him the letter we believe she wanted to confront him in person to break it off."

What are your thoughts on these seemingly connected abductions?


MORE Sherri Papini: Sherri Papini's Family And Friends Are Speaking Out, And They 'Want Answers' / Missing California Mom Was Found Chained On The Side Of The Road / Sherri Papini's Family Reacts To Her Being Found Safe /

[H/T People]