The Strange Disappearance of Gary Lynn Mullinax

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Gary Lynn Mullinax, 21, disappeared from Benton, Arkansas, on Mother’s Day 1976. Some have speculated he entered the Witness Protection Program due to his high-risk lifestyle, but that remains only a theory.

The Disappearance of Gary Lynn Mullinax

On Sunday, May 9, 1976, Gary visited his three-month-old daughter, Amy, and went to his parents’ home on Lilac Drive in Saline County, Arkansas. He said he would return in an hour, but they never saw him again.

A few days later, someone discovered his 1970 first-generation green AMC Javelin sports coupe parked on Lewis Street off Asher Avenue in Little Rock, with his wallet and keys still inside. The location was near his brother’s shop building.

The first generation (1968 -1970) of Javelin cars debuted during the height of the muscle car era and cost anywhere from $2500 and up, depending on its features. Many people questioned how Gary, a carpenter, could have afforded such a powerful and sporty car. 

Rumor had it that Gary drove for a local drug dealer, dropping off drugs and collecting money from customers. However, since the birth of his daughter, he decided to put himself on a better path and turned FBI informant. 

Gary’s sister, Carol Blakely, recalled to About You magazine’s Janie Jones in 2016 how her brother came to her house with an FBI agent one day.

“My husband had bought a gun from Gary. Come to find out the gun was stolen. We gave the gun back, and [the agent] told us Gary was helping them on some drug cases.”

People also speculated that Gary might have witnessed the drug dealer kill a buyer on one of his drops. Gary typically went alone, but once, his dealer rode with him. 

“This alleged turn of events gave rise to the theory that Mullinax may have gone into the Witness Protection Program,” writes Jones. After Gary vanished, his family never reported him missing, and the WPP theory would explain the reason.  

The dealer allegedly later murdered a man and served seven years in prison for manslaughter.

Daughter’s Quest for Answers

Gary’s daughter, Amy Mullinax Whitcomb, is 48 years old and resembles her father. She saw him only a few times before he vanished. 

Amy learned everything she knew about her father through relatives and friends. When she became an adult, she decided to seek answers regarding her father’s abrupt disappearance and questioned why nobody ever reported him missing. However, the answer remains a mystery unless you believe the WPP theory. 

Amy has run into obstacles, primarily from law enforcement, who claim they do not know Gary is missing and that “everything is hearsay,” they told her.  

As a true crime blogger, I am immediately suspicious of the police when they say they “don’t know he is missing.” Yes, you do, but are you hiding something or covering up for someone? That’s what I want to know. 

Amy did file a missing person report on her father in 2011.

Three LE agencies – Benton Police Department (BPD), Saline County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO), and Little Rock Police Department (LRPD) – refused to claim jurisdiction. Nowadays, jurisdiction lies with the resident city of the missing person. Presumably, it was like this in 1970, although I’m unsure. In this case, jurisdiction should be with the Benton Police Department because Gary allegedly lived in a trailer off Military Road. But the BPD is acting utterly clueless.

Here is what they told Jones:

“We have no information to say he was ever in Benton or any of the relatives lived in Benton. We looked into it to see if we could corroborate something, but there was nothing to corroborate. We referred it to the Little Rock Police Department because the car was found there.”

M’kay. So, none of Gary’s family members, including his sister and wife, could confirm he lived there?  That’s horse sh*t because you know damn well his wife knew.

I believe Little Rock investigators, who are now handling the case, used the age of the case and the lack of substantial leads as excuses to solve it. How about checking with John Does across the country and having his daughter submit her DNA? Or re-interview those who knew Gary and are still alive?

Gary remains missing. He would be turning 70 in June.

About Gary Lynn Mullinax

Gary was born on June 27, 1954, in Pulaski County, Arkansas. He came from a large family that included his 11 siblings. One died in infancy. His mother was a homemaker, and his father worked in construction and at a dairy.

While Gary’s wife was pregnant with their only child, Amy, she left him after discovering he had cheated on her, and she filed for divorce. Because of this, she felt it was not her place to report him missing to the police. “At that point, my life with him was over,” she said.

But it wasn’t. You had a child together, which connected you to him for at least 18 years.

TCD’s Thoughts

Did Gary go into the WPP? No, although I would not rule it out. It does explain why his parents never reported him missing and why an FBI agent showed up with Gary at Carol’s house. However, authorities would have put Amy and her mother into WPP also because drug traffickers would have targeted them in retaliation.

But I think someone killed Gary on the day he vanished. What if the drug dealer found out he was an informant? Instant death. He played a dangerous game when he entered that world. 

That said, I found it strange that Pat never reported him missing, citing the divorce as an excuse. The divorce was not finalized, and he is the father of her child. The divorce could have been a motive. To be clear, I don’t think she was involved. I just found it odd. I think she quickly washed her hands of him once she learned of the affair and her bitterness kept her from wanting anything to do with his disappearance. I can’t say that I blame her.

What about the other woman? Who was she, and was she married? If so, her spouse could be a possible suspect.


Good, Meaghan. “Gary Lynn Mullinax.” The Charley Project. 

Jones, Janie. “A Daughter’s Plea: Help Me Find My Father.” About You Magazine. 

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True Crime Diva

True Crime Diva

I've blogged true crime since 2010, happily taking up only a tiny corner of the internet. I'm not here for attention; I'm here to tell you their stories.

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