HOOD RIVER, Ore. (KOIN) – Kim Forbes has not been seen the evening since Oct. 30, 2004. The disappearance of the 48-year-old banker from Hood River was reported the morning of Nov. 1, and two weeks later her SUV was found in Gresham.
Her case was as high profile as any, but she has still not been found. For her friends and co-workers, hope is harder to cling to after nine years.
At the time, sheriff’s deputy Pete Hughes said, “It just sort of seems at this point she’s dropped off the face of the Earth.”
The current sheriff, Matt English, said, “As the years go on that fact that something is going to show up each year, it dwindles. But you always think, OK, maybe.”
Jennifer Maghinay first learned about the Kim Forbes case watching KOIN 6 News in 2009 in a story on the fifth anniversary. Since that time, the Salem-based private investigator jumped deep into the case.
“There were some things that just didn’t add up when I was looking into certain parts of Kim’s disappearance,” she told KOIN 6 News. What piqued her interest, she said, was that she and Forbes were “about the same age … and all of a sudden to be missing.”
Maghinay, working this case pro bono, visited areas and talked to neighbors near Forbes’ house – the last place she was reportedly seen by her then-teenage daughter.
The PI learned Forbes’ SUV was found in Gresham weeks after she was reported missing. She checked out the car — still impounded in the Hood River Police Impound Lot — and learned “the driver’s seat was back further than what Kim would have used if she was the one driving the vehicle.”
The SUV is the largest, yet emptiest, clue to what might have happened.
Sheriff English said whenever he goes to the impound lot he gets “a reminder and you see that car and what happened to her.”
Maghinay spent hundreds of hours investigating, working with detectives and uncovering scenarios that may have led to some answers. Earlier this month she met with a detective to share her newest information.
While she can’t get specific with names and theories, she has evidence she believes might crack the case.
“(The detective) was actually very excited that the information I provided was there and he said he was going to take a look at it and the two of us would get together and share notes,” she said. “I know there’s someone out there who knows what happened to Kim.”
Detectives have three full boxes of evidence and files on the case. They won’t confirm what they know or suspect — and will only say what they have has so far has led them nowhere.
“Just to vanish without a trace like that,” English said. “It’s real difficult for us and obviously her family and her friends.”
One of her close friends and co-workers, C. J. Woodward, remains resolute.
“There’s one theing that I know for a fact: somebody knows what happened,” Woodward told KOIN 6 News. “I’m not going to give up.”
Neither will private investigator Jennifer Maghinay. When asked if she thinks the case will be solved, she said, “Yes, I do. I do.”