Two years later, ex-husband of Janet Simpson still questions her death

Two years later, ex-husband of Janet Simpson still questions her death


by RAD BERKY / NBC Charlotte Staff

Bio | Email | Follow: @RadBerkywcnc

Posted on December 6, 2012 at 6:20 AM

Updated Thursday, Dec 6 at 6:40 AM

CHARLOTTE, N.C.  --Two years after Janet Simpson was found drowned in the Catawba River, her ex-husband still has questions about her disappearance and death.

It was December 5, 2010 when Janet Simpson was last seen leaving a restaurant on Independence Boulevard.

The following Thursday a police officer on routine patrol found her SUV at the end of a remote road in Belmont, a few hundred yards from the Catawba River.

There is a railroad bridge over the river at that spot and that led many to believe she had committed suicide.

"I know that it wasn't suicide," said Simpson's ex-husband, Michael Simpson, who still believes two years later, that there was foul play involved in her death.

Simpson and his former wife were divorced but were still on good terms back on December 5 of 2010 when Janet went missing.

When her vehicle was found, her purse was in it.

"All her personal effects and everything were in the car, including her cell phone.  The only thing that was not found were her car keys," said Michael Simpson.

He said police found something else in the vehicle. Something that until now has never been made public. It was DNA but it is not known who's DNA.

"We were assured by the Police Department that it was put into a national data base and if anything ever comes up then that red flag is going to pop," Simpson said.

Janet Simpson's body was found three months after she vanished.

It was found floating in the Catawba River about a half a mile south of where her car was found.

While an autopsy showed she had drowned, there was no evidence of foul play, no visible injuries, and nobody saw how she had gone into the river.

So, two years later, police have kept the case open.

Janet Simpson had faced the death of her mother in the weeks before she vanished and she had some other personal issues to deal with according to her ex-husband.

But Michael Simpson says nobody, including the police, can answer the biggest question he has:

"How did that car end up where they found it?"

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police would not comment on the DNA evidence or anything concerning the Simpson case, saying it was still an open file.

Investigators are still requesting if anyone has any new information that they call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.