Christopher Gene Cummings
Christopher, approximately 1992; John Christopher Peeler
Date reported missing : 12/19/1992
Missing location (approx) :
Little Rock, Arkansas
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Male
DOB : 06/20/1975 (46)
Age at the time of disappearance: 17 years old
Height / Weight : 5'2, 110 pounds
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos
: Caucasian male. Sandy brown hair, brown eyes.
Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Christopher was last seen in Little Rock, Arkansas on December 19, 1992. He had recently been grounded for poor grades, but because his grades had improved, his parents decided to let him go out. He told his parents he was going out to watch a movie with a school friend named "Amy" and would be back later. He never returned home and has never been heard from again.
He had no prior history of running away, and was never more than fifteen minutes late for his curfew. In spite of this, for two years, he was listed with law enforcement as a runaway juvenile.
In December 1994, a friend of Amy Blankenship Peeler called the police to say Amy had said her husband, John Christopher "Chris" Peeler, had killed Christopher before they married. The police arrested Amy, who gave a statement implicating her husband. John was charged with kidnapping and capital murder in Christopher's disappearance.
Amy was fifteen years old at the time of Christopher's disappearance, and John was eighteen. Amy had been a classmate of Christopher's and they had passed notes to each other and talked to each other during lunch. (Christopher's stepmother said Amy and her stepson had dated, something Amy denied. She was dating John at the time.) Amy said that Christopher came to her and her father's house while she was home alone, and raped her. She told no one at the time, except for John and his mother.
John was in the Marine Corps in 1992, but he came home on leave for Christmas. While he was home, he arranged for Amy to set up a meeting behind Sawyer's Grocery Store at 10:00 p.m., after the store was closed for the day. Amy drove to behind the store with John hiding in the backseat of the car.
When Christopher got into the car, John attacked him. Amy helped him tie up Christopher and put him in the trunk of the car, then John drove her home. She said she didn't realize Christopher would be killed, but the next day John told her he'd murdered him, and that it "took forever for him to die." He said he'd taken the body to a place near Scott, Arkansas and dumped it in the water. John's grandparents owned property near Scott where they fished. The Arkansas River backwater and slough areas are near their property.
In June 1993, on Amy's sixteenth birthday, she and John got married. They lived together for a year and a half, but then Amy left her husband because she could not go on "living a lie" knowing what he had done to Christopher. She confided to her friend, who notified the police.
Amy pleaded guilty to Christopher's kidnapping in 1995, and was sentenced to seven years of probation and a $250 fine, and she agreed to testify against John. As part of the terms of her probation, she had to mail $1 to Christopher's family on the 19th of each month for seven years after his abduction.
At John's trial in 1996, Amy, his mother and his uncle testified against him. John's mother said he brought up "the boy who raped Amy" and said he had "taken care of it" and "did him in" in a swampy area near Scott. John's uncle said John had admitted the murder to him as well. A woman who lived on Old River Road in Scott also testified, saying, John had come to her house on the 19th or 20th of December 1992 and asked to use her phone, saying his car was stuck in a field.
John was convicted of Christopher's murder in 1996 and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole, although he maintains his innocence. A photo of him is posted with this case summary.
Christopher's body has never been found.
Other information and links : ncy
Little Rock Police Department
September 2021 updates and sources
A missing person is a person who has disappeared and whose status as alive or dead cannot be confirmed as their location and condition are not known. A person may go missing through a voluntary disappearance, or else due to an accident, crime, death in a location where they cannot be found (such as at sea), or many other reasons. In most parts of the world, a missing person will usually be found quickly. While criminal abductions are some of the most widely reported missing person cases, these account for only 2–5% of missing children in Europe.
By contrast, some missing person cases remain unresolved for many years. Laws related to these cases are often complex since, in many jurisdictions, relatives and third parties may not deal with a person's assets until their death is considered proven by law and a formal death certificate issued. The situation, uncertainties, and lack of closure or a funeral resulting when a person goes missing may be extremely painful with long-lasting effects on family and friends.
Several organizations seek to connect, share best practices, and disseminate information and imAge at the time of disappearance: s of missing children to improve the effectiveness of missing children investigations, including the International Commission on Missing Persons, the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (ICMEC), as well as national organizations, including the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children in the US, Missing People in the UK, Child Focus in Belgium, and The Smile of the Child in Greece.
The Shreveport Times
John Christopher Peeler innocence group
Chris's Memorial Website
Interactive Missing Person Search Map