Missing TN Mom Karen Johnson Swift: Husband David Stays Mum, Police Question Links To Holly Bobo Case

Posted by BOC Staff | David Swift,Holly Bobo,Karen Johnson Swift,Tennessee Bureau of Investigation | Friday 4 November 2011 10:38 am

Dyersburg, TN- 44 year old Mother of four Karen Johnson Swift has been missing since early Sunday morning following the drop off of her two youngest children at the marital home where the couple continue to reside following Ms. Swift’s divorce filing October 10, 2011.

Friends of the couple speaking on the condition of anonymity to www.blinkoncrime.com have confirmed both Swift’s were previously divorced, and this is not the first hint of marital discord between the two.

Swift’s 2004 Nissan Murano was located approximately one mile away near the intersection of Millsfield Hwy and Harness Rd with a flat tire,  and her missing cell phone was last accessed at approximately 5 am, linking to a web browser.  According to her husband David,  the two spoke briefly in the stairwell at approximately 1:30am,  Karen Swift left and Mr. Swift returned to bed.  There is a residence within visual distance of the location of the vehicle and a volunteer fire company within walking distance as well.

This leaves a nearly 4 hour window in which Karen Swift appears to be unaccounted for.  Sources inside the investigation have confirmed to www.blinkoncrime.com that Karen Swift’s phone pings were last traced to the area of Mississippi River and her phone has since lost power.

Although David Swift has been interviewed by Dyer County Sheriff ‘s Office, it is unclear at this time why Karen would have left the home again after dropping off the couples two young daughters, or why she would not have called her husband for assistance following discovery of the the alleged flat tire.  Mr. Swift operates a business from the Willie Johnson address since 2004 in the aerosol packaging industry.

Calls to the Dyer County Sheriff have not been returned at the time of this publication.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Dyer County Sheriff at

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  1. Edward says:

    wordgirl posted..

    “She had picked her daughter up from a Halloween party around 1:30 that morning because [her daughter] was not feeling well,” Swift’s close friend, Carrie Engelhardt, told The Huffington Post. “She went to bed with her daughter, and when the girl woke up around 6 a.m., her mother was gone.”

    Am I understanding this correct ?
    Sounds like she never left at 1:30 ? She went to bed.
    Looks like mom at least satyed long enough for her daughter to fall asleep.

    Ex has an injury you say ? hmm

  2. Edward says:

    I need a blinkster spell checker or eyes that read what I wrote before I press the send button ! … lol

  3. Ragdoll says:


    I do not. But I would really appreciate it if anyone has 5 seconds to compile who is leading the cases of the outstanding mp cases- I have a feeling ….

    Miss B…you know me….I love a ‘search’ challenge. First 3 words that came to my mind:

    Tennessee Bureau of Investigation

    ….searching on :)

  4. Ragdoll says:

    I’m already at a crossroads. TBI doesn’t even have Holly Bobo’s profile on their site. Is it just me that finds this odd? In fact, I found nothing on their website WRT to missing women/adults. No links!

    TBI comes across as being tight lipped/controlling about these cases, imo. My search only yielded more questions than answers. *sigh*


    (didn’t conduct a thorough search on TBI partner organizations…hmmmmmmm?)

  5. connie says:

    Do you have any ideas on how to keep the media and baracuda greedy lawyers from interfering with police investigations?
    In a way, aren’t these people obstructing justice? We “laymans” can get get charged with this concept, why can’t these people be treated the same? Of course I realize it gets real complicated but still… just a thought.

  6. Word Girl says:

    Lower extemity injuries are common when one ambulates uncertain turf.
    Trust me: I’m a healthcare professional. ;)

    He’s never had to hide or destroy a corpse before, or so it seems.
    imho, a sprained ankle, a shin contusion, other skin abrasions or cuts
    would present if carrying an awkward, heavy package which needed sudden obscurement. Good question, easy answer.

    btw, Blink, did you get on FB before the page went private? Who knows your wily ways…

  7. Löni says:

    I coundn’t read all comments till now so i cannot comment about the missing from this beautifull Woman and Mom Karen Johnson Swift. It is sad and it just doesn’t look good. I just wanted to ask if someone also think that it is very curious that between Memphis and Nashville to the right and to the left of the Highway 40 there were so many abduction and missing persons. I tend to think that there must be a pedophile Serial killer on the loose. If we look at the missing persons some are young and braun haired and there are the blond ones a bit older. But the disapearance of the younger braun haired ones seems for me not reliated to Holly and Karen. So could it be that there are 2 perps in the same aera? I didn’t read all accurately so please forgive if i missed something.

  8. zeus says:

    Definitely Blink-I have been trying to find info on David’s injury. It’s been niggling at my brain since I saw him on crutches.

    I have read on the local Topix(I know, I know-for shame), that David tore a tendon in May 2011 and has been on crutches since then.

    Take it with a grain of salt of course, but supposedly a neighbor of theirs posted that….


    Anyone else wondering how recent Mr. Swift’s lower extremity injury is and how he got it?

    Reasonable question, I think.

  9. zeus says:

    Cindy, the pictures(8 and 13)look to be from this property-per Google maps:

    325 Harness Rd
    Dyersburg, TN

    I won’t print the family name(DEX white pages), as they most likely have nothing to do with this case.

    The house appears to be a small, one bedroom, one bath, but the red roofed outbuildings are huge. When I looked this up, the outbuildings are not mentioned in the home description, but I cannot find a way to click on them separate from the above address.

    I get the impression this may be a rental property.


    Cindy says:
    November 5, 2011 at 6:16 am

    #27 – The photos #8 and #13 – what area is these of?

  10. zeus says:

    Well this certainly doesn’t sound good. Swift’s neighbor has been taken into custody, and possibly had his car impounded. Rumor also has it that this neighbor has been gone for days and just returned home, and was arrested as he pulled into his driveway. I’m not liking where this could be going….

    “John E. Hogshooter, 39, 285 Pennell Lane, was arrested by sheriff’s officers on Saturday for aggravated animal cruelty while performing their search of a wooded area on Harness Road in Dyer County. Hogshooter is accused of poisoning two dogs in the area, one of which belonged to the Swifts.

    Swift’s husband, David Swift, reported the incident to sheriff’s deputies on Oct. 7. In the report, David Swift stated he observed his dog travel to 310 Harness Road, where Hogshooter had been staying, and it fell ill shortly afterward. Karen Swift was reported to have gone to the dwelling to speak to Hogshooter, but he was not there and she saw a blue rocky substance in a pan. The dog was taken to an animal clinic and was given medication to counteract the alleged poison, then was released after overnight observation.

    Hogshooter’s Harness Road address is approximately 50 yards from the Swift residence on Willie Johnson Road, and almost directly across the road from the address where the other dog was allegedly found poisoned.

    Investigators signed a warrant for Hogshooter’s arrest after results of the poisoning came back from the TBI’s crime lab.

    Dyer County Sheriff Jeff Box stated Hogshooter was taken into custody when deputies saw him pull into the dwelling at 310 Harness Road.”


    Yep. oye.


  11. Moose says:

    I just read about the neighbor who poisoned her dog? And just arrested. Very strange.

  12. Moose says:

    I’m curious what caused the flat tire?

  13. [...] TN- 50 yards from the  Willie Johnson residence of missing TN mother Karen Swift, John Hogshooter pulled into his driveway and was promptly arrested.   Hogshooter is facing a [...]

  14. Twinkletoes says:

    So sad….poor kids.

  15. safehaven says:

    @blink thankyou for reading between my lines but of course that is what you do ,are trained to do and for the victims do so well. I have learned so much by following your site. I did not want to lose objectivity over the entire situation. The arrest of the neighbor does add a twist and no doubt (due to the connection of animal cruelty and human abuse i.e.esp children) .Ref Animal Abuse and Unlawful Killing Forensic Veterinary Pathology Author R.Munro/H.Munro And by no means do I want this guy out of custody or his actions off the radar. My fear is perhaps this was seen as an opportunity, which reared it’s ulgy head, perceiving a situation that could not be changed or endured ,and was acted upon IMO After hearing of this new mp ,I am trying to look at the beauty given to each of us with each breathe we take and do good with it.Thankyou for providing us with a site to vent some of our fears and learn thus aiding in becoming better at what we do. MOO

  16. Josie says:

    All I can say is thank you Blink for covering this story. I have a great fear of what may have happened to Karen. My prayers are with Karen and her family.

  17. daydreamer says:

    safehaven says:
    November 6, 2011 at 8:39 am

    I am trying to look at the beauty given to each of us with each breathe we take and do good with it.Thank you for providing us with a site to vent some of our fears and learn thus aiding in becoming better at what we do

    The beauty of language and well spoken.That is why we are here,we want
    to speak for the victims of crime and to see that justice prevails.

  18. GeorgiaDad says:

    I am unable to read the whole article since this article is missing the “(more…)” link that is usually present at the bottom of all of your articles. I know there is a more recent article on this site for comments, but would really like to see the whole article.

    Other than hot Tennessee blondes disappearing, I don’t see a lot in common with the Holly Bobo case.

  19. Coco says:

    If you are going to write about David at least get your information right. He might have owned a side business but he works at Tenaris as a manager in Blytheville, Arkansas. David adores Karen. He loves her more than anything beside the kids. Does it not tell you something that when Karen filed for a divorce she chose to live with David still? Did you ever stop to think that maybe she was trying to get his attention? It wouldn’t be the first time. David is a loving husband and father and a wonderful person to have as a friend. He wouldn’t hurt a hair on Karen’s head like some people are insinuating on here. They made the perfect couple if you were ever around them. They have worked hard together to raise some really wonderful kids. David’s only fault is he works too much. He has to work a lot of hours at Tenaris. Karen didn’t like it. So give the family a break and help them find Karen instead of sitting here talking about them.

    Ms. Coco

    with all due respect, your comment is entirely devoid of the facts of the situation. I have been at this awhile, David may be a lovely man, but please note your post intimates your an insider, and it lacks any contradiction about his hiring of an attorney and refusal to have the property available for search for valuable evidence that might be critical to recovering his beloved wife.

    Perfect couples? Have you spoken to her family or close friends? They do not share your glass is full mentality, and to their credit are not willing to discuss publicly.

    If David is so loving an perfect, I can tell you that as a statistic, he is not helping himself.


  20. Coco says:

    Did you ever think that David hired an attorney because the police always goes at the other spouse so hard? As far as the property that is part of the focus on him…and he believes they need to be looking else where and not loose anymore precious time that may save her. Personally I would have let them look but that is me. I am not saying they didn’t have their problems but they were a good couple together. Yes I have talked with her family if you must know and they don’t like all the negative comments because there are the children. I am not saying David is perfect but the way everyone is describing him on here is way off base. Karen is one of the most beautiful people you could meet. I am not talking just physical but on the inside. Even though they are getting a divorce she would hate all the negative comments going on. I truly believe they have the guy….but it isn’t David.

    Coco, with all due respect, David has no basis for opinion on what LE should or should not focus on- keep in mind, he filed the missing person report. I have seen no misrepresentations of him, and I do not allow flagrant mudslinging a la topix here.

    If you are in touch with Mr. Swift, one consideration he should have if he is as interested in not “losing precious time” as you say, is that without his cooperation LE cannot exclude him, and if he is not involved, that stance is draining resources more than anything, I can assure you.

    The reality is, and I am sure his attorney has explained this to him, every bank record, email, transaction, purchase, sale of any items, timeshare status, work schedules, GPS, cell phones pings and the like (you get where I am going with this) is already in the hands of LE or in the process of same. There are interviews being conducted with family, friends, and associates of people that do not understand or support David’s behavior at the moment- I know because I have interviewed some of them off the record.

    Has he considered if he is not involved that those very kind souls who love (d) both of them would like nothing more than for him to be excluded so that they can extend their support?

    See many cars of the couples extensive friend base in the driveway? In my work, that is telling, period.

    The home and property, and any other potential locations tied to the couple will eventually be searched via subpoena anyway- ergo, why not allow it now?

    LE needs to move past him for several reasons, the least of which is that how they proceed with their investigative directives changes radically if the person that is responsible for crimes like this nine times out of ten can be eliminated as a potential suspect.

    Really- he wants her found but won’t give LE her freaking toothbrush or worn item from the laundry?

    I find that way more offensive than any rumor because at the end of the day, I can tell you this from experience, nobody cares about that stuff, they are both human beings and as such we are all flawed- but one of them is missing and likely the victim of foul play and that fact is not going away.

    As the father of 4, with two little innocent cherubs I have no doubt he loves with all his heart, he has got to put them first now, and he alone knows what that means.

    These children and this family are in Hell on Earth and like it or not, the only thing that will start the process to alleviating their grief is to find Karen- regardless of that outcome.

    I never met Karen, but I know many Karen’s, literally and figuratively, and as an advocate for victims, we work for her only right now, and that task priority is finding her.

    Lastly, I feel tremendously for the situation you are in, truly.

    My advice to you is to follow what your heart and your gut agree on, and what they do not set aside until they do.

    My advice to David is to realize that people in this situation always think they are in a position to control events, they never do, that is just self-fulfilling claptrap and the Mother of his children deserves better.


  21. ode says:

    Blink, you are amazing. You are so correct. It is as if some people no matter what think “It’s all about me”.

    I really do understand the process that those close to this case are going through, and it is necessary, of course.

    That said, it would just be great if whoever did this would stop playing the odds and do the right thing already.


  22. Shelley says:

    Do you know what time Mr. Swift phoned in the missing persons report? I haven’t been able to find that particular fact anywhere. Thank you!

  23. Lin Gill says:

    On 11/4/11, Twinkletoes listed 9 young women in TN who have been abducted.

    On a forensic astrology blog, Holly Bobo’s birth chart was analyzed and it indicated that Holly was taken by a member of a clandestine survivalist group. This was done scientifically and each planetary position explained. I know this is not for everyone and the language may be confusing, but the analysis is chilling. The only positive is that Holly may still be alive. This would also explain so many young women missing from the same area around the same time period. Please look into this.

  24. Jack says:

    Blink – you asked us to remind you when there is 5 minutes for “teacher talk” about women alone, as you have an Anniversary outing to share? Do you have 5 minutes?

    Also, consider this scenario: Karen is in bed with her daughter, David comes in, points a gun at Karen and threatens her or the kids, she unwillingly leaves the house with him, and he kills her nearby so the kids aren’t alone for too long. Reasonable? If so, she HAS to be somewhere near the house.

    Jack- thanks for the memory jog. It is important to me to practice what I preach, and when I don’t, to fess up.

    Mr. Blink and I were out for an Anniversary eve, sitting in the lobby of a historic “haunt” of ours when Mr. Blink excused himself to visit the mens room. Once he left, I thought it a good time to go to the ladies loo, even though I remembered it is in a remote part of the building 2 levels below.

    My point in mentioning this, is that for whatever reasons, many historical buildings have tons of mens rooms off every corner, lol, ladies, not so much.

    I was in a skirt and heels, and was navigating 3 flights of steps when at the bottom, there was a young man vacuming a hallway to my left, the ladies room was about 2o ft. to the right.

    Lets discuss in terms of “The gift of Fear” speak.

    What I did RIGHT:

    My satellite worked and I listened. On mild alert.

    I made eye contact with the kid, I said hello. He nodded sheepishly and averted his eyes. High alert shows up.

    I engaged him as if to say, I am confident, and I see you, I am a fighter/screamer and I will use these heels as a weapon to your manhood, so help me.

    While in the ladies room, I specifically listened to the sound of the vacum, and when it stopped. I did the mental math of sound vs. distance vs. area.

    I stood in the room a moment, and pretended to be on my phone, ( Mr. B’s was in the car, so no help there) and listened for movement outside. I knew from this I could clear the doorway.

    I said.. O sorry honey, I just ran to the ladies room, are you headed down here? Good, be out in a sec.

    I listened, heard sounds again indicating more distance.

    I walk out, quicken my step with handbag on right, messenger style.

    I don’t see him, but I know he is there. I note the vacum, in the hall, no longer plugged in, but in front of the open door to whatever is back there, I approach the alcove to my right, there is some sort of vending I think, and a darkened area next to the steps, so I approach the left and begin up the stairs.

    As I ascend, I turn around, and I can see him in that dark alcove. He has moved out of the shadow a bit, and he has has his back to me with his PDA on record, I can see myself in it as I am moving up the stairs.

    My guess is he was looking for an up the skirt shot, or whatever.

    I stopped and turned to look at him and said.. ” Creeper- your a damn creeper skeeve- seriously?”

    He fumbled and just looked at me and in his phone, pressed a button and met my gaze. Never said a word and I turned and went up the stairs.

    I did not say anything to my hubby because we were about to leave, he probably would have headed down to confront the dude, and I was embarrassed that I had broken my cardinal rule- the buddy system.

    The particular set up of the establishment is absolutely geared for a woman to be accompanied to the ladies room at ANY time of day, but most specifically on creeper’s shift apparently.

    So, in summary:

    1. Confronting a 6’2″ creeper on the steps in heels, heinous idea. I let my anger get in the way of my security, and that is bogus ego bullchit. In one lunge, he probably could have been over the railing pulling me off the steps by my legs and incapacitating me in seconds. While I am writing this I am still saying in my head.. no way, your fast, you would have ran out of those heels… blah blah. Confidence is one thing, stupidity and a freakish acumen in physics win out on this. I know better.

    2. This was a bad idea from the start, that could have ended very badly, and I know better, and whether it was wine, false sense of security, or whatever, I choose to believe this was my reminder, and in turn, now everyone’s who is reading this.

    3. My satellite antennae worked like a lightening rod. When I was in the loo I listened for the vacum, judged the distance, and faked the hubby call, “your on your way down.” I can tell you I recalled in my head it was approximately 9 steps to the bathroom from the bottom of the stairs and the hallway was about 5′ wide. I made mental notes of his physical appearance, clothing, and doors I passed that led to somewhere if I needed an immediate escape route and that was my only option. I nixed that as I assumed since they were left open they may not lock and that could be a trap in itself.

    4. Purse as messenger bag on right, bad idea. He could have controlled me by slinging me into the wall in a nano-second. I should have held it by the handles across my left side with my right hand in a fist to use as a weapon. I should have removed the long strap that has a dog leash closure and curled it around my left hand in a fist so I could use it as a sort of whip with the leash facing outward as a weapon.

    5. I assumed the non-verbal was attributable to his being shady. I walked out of that ladies room, thinking he heard me say my hubby was on the way down the steps, so how stupid could he be? Again, major error on my part, he never said a word, for all I know, he did not even speak english.

    On Karen:

    I do not think David was dumb enough to pull a gun on Karen in the home, and would not do that in the presence of his daughters. I think Karen went outside to make a phone call, or send a text or email, and she and David had it out in the yard, somewhere on the property or driveway.

    My guess is she tried to run from him and that is how he strained his patella, if in fact, he re-injured his knee that evening.

    The vehicle has not been returned from the impound, but as we know other dna results are back, so I am making the assumption that the car yields some sort of forensic value, otherwise it would be returned.

    David’s travels the following 48 hours will yield karen’s location, and it is time for Box to come out of the box and release enough detail to generate leads.


  25. Jack says:

    Thank you so much, Blink, for sharing your personal experience of what to do and what not to do when we women are alone and confronted with a potentially dangerous situation. I, too, have used the fake phone call strategy, particularly when in unmarked private “taxis” by myself. I will always remember your story and advice.

    Your theories on Karen seem more plausible than the gun. I remember hearing that Karen texted a friend that night, but I thought that was from the party. Do you believe there were other texts, calls, emails made that evening after she returned home? Also, will David’s travels in the folloiwng 48 hours be revealed?

    Yes, there are others, and no, I do not think Box will release anything that would potentially progress this case at this point. In fairness to him, we do not know what they have.

  26. Jane says:

    Thanks for sharing your story, Blink. I’m very familiar with the setup of ladie’s loo in basement and in a couple popular places even on outside of establishment!!! Neither bothered me so much when I was younger and drank more! Now both creep me out. My significant other was recently diagnosed with a neurological disease so I can’t rely on his speed and strength as I always have. I’ve become double vigilant and finally convinced him he needs to pay more attention,too. Although he is very solid in appearance, he could be an easy target because of balance issues.

  27. Terri says:

    Has anyone checked on the dog poisoning? My vet did bloodwork to determine what my rotti was poisoned with and it was a commercial block of rat poison in raw meat taken from underneath commercial buildings so crooks could break in places with guard dogs. I’m wondering because Mr. Swift would not let them search at first and she was a Yard Lady, Botanist. There are 10 very deadly plants people grow either the leaves/stems/roots or beans. I grow the castor bean and I have pit’s now, I have to fence off these plants so my dogs don’t get/eat the beans. She would also have Chemicals for her plants. I think I saw where it was a blue liquid they thought had poisoned the dogs? Antifreeze and Miracle Grow. Perfect to set up a neighbor with considering Mr. Swift was always at home and watched as his dog visited the neighbors? and waited for it’s return maybe because he knew animals will drink antifreeze, it’s sweet.

  28. Edward says:

    What do you think Blink ? Do you think that there is relavance to Holly Bobo in any of this ?

    None whatsoever, Edward.

    Karen Swift’s murder was a domestic situation that boiled over.


  29. In any event there is definetly some foul play and sounds like a cover up.

  30. Cindy says:


    Updated article from the State Gazetta regarding Karen Swift, looks like they have someone in the headlights.

    I find Sheriff Box’s interview incongruent with the fact that the case had better be with the grand jury at this point if that is his take.

    Is this another forced indictment in TN?

    Just a question, because David Swift killed his wife while his baby girls slept in the home.



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