A popular crime documentary is set to unravel the harrowing true story of a 14-year-old schoolgirl who was sexually abused and strangled to death by her own stepfather.
Chyenne Kircher disappeared from her family home in East Dubuque, Illinois, in October 2011, with a note left behind reportedly from the teen claiming she had run away.
Widespread searches were launched but the situation took a shocking turn two years later after her decomposed body was found buried in the woods just 100 yards away from the house.
Her stepfather Terry Abbas, now 50, would eventually be convicted for murder, sexual abuse and concealing a homicidal death.
Here, FEMAIL has laid bare the chilling details as an upcoming episode of FBI True explores The Disappearance of Chyenne Kircher.
Chyenne Kircher, from East Dubuque, Illinois, was sexually abused and strangled to death by stepfather Terry Abbas
Chyenne had grown up in a dysfunctional household where she lived with her mom, stepfather and two brothers – as well as another man who she told teachers was her mom’s boyfriend.
Amy Taylor, who was Special Education Manager at the girl’s school, said: ‘She always seemed a little disheveled.’
‘She needed some tender care. She was a student who liked attention – maybe not always positive attention.
‘She struggled with some social settings however she really wanted to belong. She needed to belong.’
Social services were called on the family more than once but things took a dramatic turn in October 2011 after Chyenne failed to turn up at school.
Her family went out looking for her and rang around her friends but eventually reported her as a missing person to the local police department.
They claimed that she had run away after finding a handwritten note that had been left in a car which read along the lines of ‘don’t come looking for me.’
Chyenne had grown up in a dysfunctional household where she lived with her mom, stepfather and two brothers – as well as another man who she told teachers was her mom’s boyfriend
The situation took a shocking turn two years later after her decomposed body was found buried in the woods just 100 yards away from the house
Abbas took police to the burial site but would later reveal that he had actually dug the grave the day before in an act of premeditation
Nonetheless, police launched a widespread search with more than three different forces being involved.
Officers also looked into Chyenne’s internet history and found that she had been speaking with older men online across the US – from Florida to Texas and Alaska.
But further investigation found that none of these people had been involved in her disappearance.
Family and friends continued to hold vigils but, with no immediate signs of foul play, authorities had little to go on and the trail went cold.
But when a new taskforce was set up nearly two years later officers decided to ramp up the search for Chyenne once again.
During the course of the investigation, suspicion had fallen on stepfather Terry Abbas with Chyenne previously telling friends that he had been sexually abusing her.
She had also claimed to one of her teachers that she had caught him watching porn and threatened to tell her mom.
With authorities building up an image of Abbas being a ‘threat’ to Chyenne, they conducted a polygraph test which indicated he had been lying.
He was immediately taken to a separate interview room where his story began to unravel to the point that he confessed.
‘Well.. you got your man. You got Terry Abbas. Chyenne is not with us. She’s gone,’ he said during interview.
Abbas also said he had also coerced the 14-year-old to write the note about a month earlier as part of a ‘practical joke’ the pair were going to play on Chyenne’s mom
In his initial confession, Abbas told police that he had taken the youngster into the woods behind the family home to run around.
He claimed he slipped and blacked out – adding that when he woke up Chyenne was dead and that he had his hand around her neck.
‘Before I knew it, I was standing over her body,’ Abbas stated, before bursting into tears.
‘My life is over. It’s been over for a long time I just haven’t faced the reality.’
He later divulged that he had sex with Chyenne in the backyard of the family home before strangling her to death.
‘Last thing I remember my hand was over her neck, for some reason… Squeezing, I guess. Then I panicked.’
Abbas claimed he had then dug a hole around five feet deep and dumped her body less than 100 yards from the family home.
He took police to the burial site but would later reveal that he had actually dug the grave the day before in an act of premeditation.
Abbas also said he had also coerced the 14-year-old to write the note about a month earlier as part of a ‘practical joke’ the pair were going to play on Chyenne’s mom.
He pleaded guilty to six charges in October 2013 – including three counts of murder, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and one count of concealing a homicidal death.
The killer was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.