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With tires deflated and paint stripped off, Stephanie Van Nguyen, 26, was found dead in a water submerged vehicle on October 14, 2021. Stephanie and her car were found in the Ohio River near Aurora, Indiana.

Stephanie Van Nguyen

Stephanie Van Nguyen

Detectives from the Indiana State Police-Versailles Post began a missing person investigation after a vehicle connected to a 2002 missing person investigation from Delhi Township, Ohio was located in the Ohio River near Aurora, Indiana.

In April 2002, the Delhi Township Police Department began investigating the disappearance of Stephanie and her two children, Kristina, age 4, and John, age 3. Stephanie was last known to be driving her 1997 Nissan Pathfinder. Information gathered at the time indicated that Stephanie left a note that she was going to drive into the Ohio River however, her vehicle was not located at the time.

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The Delhi Township Police Department began looking into the case again recently in 2021. A thorough search of the river using new side sonar scan technology led divers to locate a vehicle that matched the description of Stephanie’s vehicle. 

Anthropologists believe a bone recovered in the vehicle is a human bone. The bone will be sent to a lab for testing in an attempt to determine the origin.

The registration plate on the vehicle confirmed the vehicle belonged to Stephanie.

Dive teams from the Hamilton County Police Association and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources with the assistance of a towing company worked to bring the vehicle to the surface. 

Stephanie's vehicle was located at a depth of over 50 feet and was approximately 300 feet from the bank of the river.

The vehicle was transported to a secure location where Indiana State Police Investigators will examine the vehicle to determine if Stephanie's two children were in the vehicle also.