Ellen Beth Sloan
Sloan, approximately 2005; William Gholson in 2019
Date reported missing : 04/16/2005
Missing location (approx) :
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Female
DOB : 08/13/1952 (68)
Age at the time of disappearance: 52 years old
Height / Weight : 5'4, 110 pounds
Description, clothing, jewerly and more : A diamond and garnet ring on her left ring finger, a gold necklace with a yellow gold heart-shaped pendant with the word "Mom" in the center surrounded by multicolored gold flowers, and possibly gold stud earrings.
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos
: Caucasian female. Graying light brown hair, blue eyes. Sloan has eyeglasses with small wire frames; she wears them only for driving and reading. She may use the alias middle initial G. She has small scars on her forearms and hands and a mole on the front center of her neck, and her ears are pierced.
Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Sloan was last seen at her residence in the vicinity of the 3000 block of south Shore Route in Polson, Montana on April 16, 2005. She has never been heard from again. She was reported missing on April 23.
Her silver 2002 Toyota Tundra extended cab truck was located on April 28 at a shopping center in the vicinity of the 2600 block of north Reserve Street in Missoula, Montana, a few minutes from the Missoula International Airport. The vehicle was packed with Sloan's possessions, as if she had been traveling.
Sloan was facing federal tax evasion charges at the time of her disappearance. She had been released on her own recognizance after her arrest. Her attorney stated Sloan had been cooperating with authorities and was not facing enough fines or prison time to make her want to run away.
Sloan's family states it's uncharacteristic of her to leave without warning and they are concerned for her welfare. They reported her missing after she didn't show up for her son's college graduation in Colorado. She left behind her passport as well as a significant amount of money in the bank; she hasn't not accessed her bank accounts since her disappearance.
Sloan posted bond for her boyfriend, William Earl Gholson, shortly before her disappearance. Gholson had been jailed for incest, and was still on parole for the offense at the time of her disappearance. He moved into Sloan's house after his release from jail. While living with her, he ordered a computer using a line of credit in Sloan's name, and applied for credit cards in her name and her adult son's name.
Ten days after her disappearance, Sloan's son ordered Gholson out of her house. He subsequently dropped out of sight, but then resurfaced.
In 2019, he violated his parole by being arrested for possession of methamphetamine. He completed chemical dependency treatment and his parole was not revoked at the time, but several months later he was charged with assault for punching a Missoula, Montana woman in the face. His parole was revoked for this offense and he was sentenced to twenty years in prison for the violation. A photo of Gholson is posted with this case summary.
Authorities believe Gholson may know more about Sloan's disappearance than he has disclosed, but he has never been charged in her disappearance. Her case remains unsolved.
Other information and links : ncy
Lake County Sheriff's Office
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.
Montana Missing Persons Clearinghouse
The Valley Journal
Interactive Missing Person Search Map