Portland police are asking for help from the public for information related to a missing person case from more than five decades ago.

Cathy Marie Moulton

The Portland Police Department in a Facebook post Sunday said that 16-year-old Cathy Marie Moulton was reported missing 52 years ago.

Moulton was last seen on Forest Avenue, wearing a navy blue all-weather coat and was carrying a brown, leather bag. She was approximately 5-foot-4 and weighed about 98 pounds. She had light brown hair and blue eyes.

Cathy Moulton was just 16-years-old when she left home to run errands on Sept. 24, 1971, and never returned.

Her disappearance is one of the oldest active missing person cases in Maine and the United States.

The Deering High School junior planned to meet up with friends that night at the 7-11 Club dance at the YWCA, but first she had to buy pantyhose, toothpaste and thread to finish hemming the new pantskirt she had made to wear.


She went to the former Porteous, Mitchell & Braun retail store on Congress Street in Portland to buy what she needed, then stopped by Starbird Music on Forest Avenue to visit a friend. She was never seen again after she left Starbird Music and the cold case remains unsolved.

“The story back then was she just disappeared like she was abducted by aliens on Forest Avenue. Until we looked into this, that’s all we had,” Kevin Cady, a retired Portland police department detective, told the Press Herald in a 2021 interview. Cady worked on the case in the 1990s. Cady wrote a book about the case which was published in 2016.

Cady interviewed Moulton’s best friend and discovered she had an older boyfriend, Lester Everett. Witnesses reported seeing Cathy get into a blue car on Sept. 24 with two older boys. Cady would later discover that Everett had picked up a Canadian man in his 20s and offered to drive him 300 miles north to the Tobique reservation outside of Perth-Andover, New Brunswick, but he believes Cathy didn’t know about that plan when she got in the car.

Portland police now believe she was taken north from Portland against her wishes, was prevented from leaving while working on a potato farm in Aroostook County, before she died on a Maliseet Tobique First Nations reservation in New Brunswick. Moulton’s body has never been recovered and no official suspects have been named in her case. Everett died of cancer in 1986.

The details of Cady’s investigation are outlined in his book: “Cathy Moulton Missing and Endangered: A Cold Case Missing Person Investigation.”

The investigation into her disappearance remains open and detectives follow any leads or new information in the case.

If anyone has information that could help solve this crime, people are being asked to call the Portland Police Department at 207-874-8575, according to the department’s Facebook post.

To provide information anonymously, call 207-874-8584 and leave a message on the department’s crime tip line. People can also text the keyword “PPDME” and message to 847411 (TIP411).

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