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Car connected to Ohio missing persons case from 20 years ago found in Indiana river

AURORA, Ind. (WISH) — Detectives from Indiana State Police are investigating the 2002 disappearance of an Ohio woman and her two children after her vehicle was found Thursday in the Ohio River near Aurora, Indiana.

In April 2002, police in southwestern Ohio began investigating the disappearance of Stephanie Van Nguyen, 26, and children Kristina, 4, and John, 3.

Nguyen was last known to be driving at 1997 Nissan Pathfinder, and a note found at the time of her disappearance indicated that she planned to drive her SUV into the Ohio River. However, her vehicle was not located at the time of the initial investigation.

Ohio police recently began looking into the again and searched the river using sonar scan technology. This led divers to a vehicle that was 300 feet from the bank of the river in Indiana that matched the description of Nguyen’s SUV. Registration plates later confirmed the car to be Nguyen’s.

Dive teams from Hamilton County Police Association and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources with the assistance of Schaffer’s Towing brought the vehicle to the surface.

ISP investigators have not yet said if Nguyen and her children were found in the SUV.