Burned remains may offer clues to fate of woman missing since 2010

Beth Bentley, of Woodstock, has been missing since May 2010.
Beth Bentley, of Woodstock, has been missing since May 2010. Provided

Police have found remains that may provide answers in the 2010 disappearance of an Illinois woman.

Beth Bentley, 41, of Woodstock, disappeared in May 2010, after a friend dropped her off at an Amtrak station in Centralia. Bentley was supposed to take the train back to Woodstock, but Amtrak had no records of Bentley buying the ticket or boarding a train, according to the Northwest Herald. She never returned home.

Now police have found severely burned human remains in Jefferson County that they believe may be tied to Bentley’s disappearance.

“Information was developed which led the ISP to a rural location in Jefferson County,” read a statement from the state police district in Du Quoin. “Investigators are working to positively identify the remains, which are badly burned.”

Bentley was married with three children and was office manager for her husband’s law firm. Scott Bentley said at the time that his wife never mentioned taking a train back, since she traveled to visit her friend by car. He told the Herald that there had been no activity on his wife’s credit cards or cell phone since her disappearance.

Her friend, Jennifer Wyatt-Paplham, was initially charged with obstruction of justice, but the charges were later dropped.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Illinois State Police at 618-542-2171 or the Woodstock Police Department at 815-338-2131.

Elizabeth Donald: 618-239-2507, @BNDedonald