Monday, January 3, 2011

Renee Pernice: The Details Lead to Murder

It was January 2, 2009 when Shon Pernice was scheduled to attend a training session with the Missouri National Guard. Instead he picks up his kids at a neighbors home and his wife, Renee, is not there. That evening his daughter from another relationship was concerned she had not heard from heard from Renee, her step-mother. Around 9:30pm the child calls Renee, leaving a voice mail asking her to come home.

Saturday, January 3, at approximately 4:30 am, leaving his 11, 8, and 6 year old children alone (while they were sleeping) Shon Pernice goes to a Fire station. He used his key card to enter Fire Station #5’s hazmat storage area. This area stores chemicals used for clean-up of hazardous spills.  Shon, is an EMT for the Independence, MO fire department assigned to Fire Station #7- not station #5 a huge red flag.

  • He does not report to the National Guard that weekend.
  • He goes into a facility likely forgetting or not knowing that his key card will be documented and recorded upon entry.
  • His story is fabricated.
  • He is the last person to see her alive.
  • He does not report Renee missing.
  • He has a lot to lose financially.

On Saturday, January 3, the step-child calls her mother, according to accounts, the child is scared, her mother picks up the daughter at the Pernice home, cutting short the normal visit. She then contacts someone from Renee’s family. A few hours later a family member calls the Pernice home to speak to Renée.

Shon answered and said that he did not know where Renée was. Family members called 911.

Shon Pernice has given conflicting information on when he last saw Renée. He told a family member it was on January 1. He told police it was on the morning of January 2 between 9 and 10am.

At approximately 3:00 PM, family members met officers at Renee’s home. Family members, along with officers, entered the residence and discovered that no one was home. They also discovered that Renee’s purse, vehicle, personal hygeine items and coat were at the residence. They noticed that Renee’s wallet, credit cards and cell phone were missing, Renee’s car was parked in the garage.

At the Pernice residence a call came in to a family member from Renée’s cell phone. (It was approximately 4pm.) A homeless man had found the phone at approximately 1am that morning (1/3/09), on the ground in the northeast part town, approximately 12 miles from Renée’s home. Police sent a patrolman to pick up Renée’s phone from the homeless person.

The family members, not Shon Pernice, filed a missing person report while at the residence with police.

Another red flag, and important pattern of conduct by the last person to see his wife alive, Shon Pernice and 2 attorneys arrived at the home and ordered the family and police to leave. The attorneys stated Pernice would not be speaking to family members or the police except through them.

On Sunday, January 4, Renée’s family immediately printed up posters and began posting flyers. They also searched portions of Kessler Park close to where Renée’s cell phone was found.

In addition, family contacted the local news stations asking if they would broadcast the news of Renée’s disappearance.

Monday, January 5, Detectives found divorce documents at Renée’s place of employment. They also found a photo of Shon with one of the children and an unknown woman in the file.

Tuesday, January 6, in the evening, Shon drove to Line Creek Park, approximately 1.5 miles from Renée’s house and let the family dog out of the van and left. Detectives who were observing Shon retrieved the dog.

January 7 police to obtain a warrant to search Renée’s house and January 9 for the car.

Nearly 2 years to the date Renee' Pernice vanished, her remains have yet to be recovered. Had the step-child not be alarmed and contacted her mother, a lot more evidence would have likely vanished.

In May of 2010, without a body, Shon Pernice was charged with murder, is being held on a million dollar bond, and is scheduled for trial in June of 2011. What is disturbing is that she may never be located because of the chemicals, in my opinion, used when he killed her. The time line of when the children went to bed and when Pernice left the residence is important, that is when he disposed of her body. Where he had it hidden is anyone's guess, but, it had to be a safe enough place for him to return, a place only he knew, where no one would suspect.

The details a week prior are also important to the case, including cell phone records, purchases at hardware stores, his time cards at work, the strange woman in a photo with he and the kids. His fire work boots and frankly any shoes in his truck, locker at work, the house and on the property are important evidence along with credit card activity 6 months prior. If they can identify the woman from the photo, her cell phone records and credit card activity should also be considered as this is someone who might unknowingly make purchases for him,  or secure a cell phone and have packages delivered to her.

The pattern of conduct of Renee Pernice leading up to the day she vanished could be like so many other women trying to leave a marriage. Renee held a good job with a salary enough to support herself and her children, in fact, Renee alone cared for her children while her husband was stationed overseas. During the investigation divorce papers were discovered in Renee's home office, leading us to believe she was serious about leaving her marriage this time.

Renee Pernice was close to her family, was in constant contact, and, as is often heard in cases of missing mothers, "she would NEVER leave her children." Most of the statements from Shon Pernice are in direct contrast with the woman and mother her family knew her to be. Perhaps Renee confided in her family or close friends about the upcoming divorce, or the problems in her marriage leading her to make the decision to finalize it.

A $25,000 reward has been offered for information that leads to where her remains.

The family is trying to appeal to the people that know, or have heard things on the fringes and could give them a tip, that's all they're asking for, according to Renee's father, Rick Pretz.

Anyone with information on Renee Pernice's disappearance is asked to call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS.

Shon Pernice is also linked to another missing mother, and in my opinion, can be placed at her crime scene years earlier, Star Boomer.

Star Boomer has been missing since 1999, 10 years, and she left behind a son and a family that deserve some real, truthful answers. Shon Pernice was the last person known to see both women.

There is a $5,000 reward for information in Star Boomer's case. Call the TIPS Hotline or link to the family's private investigator's web site for the case.

[Susan Murphy Milano is with the Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Pathology Education. She is an expert on intimate partner violence and homicide crimes. For more information visit  She is the author of "Time's Up A Guide on How to Leave and Survive Abusive and Stalking Relationships," available for purchase at the Institute, and wherever books are sold.  Susan is the host of The Susan Murphy Milano Show, "Time's Up!" on Here Women Talk and is a regular contributor to the nationally syndicated The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth ]


Anonymous said...

Can you post a copy of the picture of the other woman? It may help to identify her.

Susan said...

The photo of Star Boomer is posted.

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