Chris Proffitt/Eyewitness News
The family of Shannon Sherrill is looking for answers into the disappearance of the little Thorntown girl 21 years ago and hoping to locate her body. They say the investigation with a potential suspect is moving too slowly.
Friday was a somber anniversary for Mike Sherrill. Twenty-one years ago, his daughter Shannon, then six years old, disappeared while playing outside of her Thorntown home. Not since a hoax involving a woman claiming to be Shannon in 2003 has Mike Sherrill felt so much hope and frustration.
"It's been 21 years and we're this close and it doesn't seem like we're going to get any closer. It doesn't seem like there's going to be anything happening," he said.
Sherrill is frustrated after learning that a Ohio prison informant and former cellmate of convicted child killer David Penton was allegedly implicated Penton earlier this year in Shannon's abduction. Indiana State Police interviewed Penton, who's serving a life sentence. Penton said in a prison interview that he expects to be charged with her murder.
"I've done wrong in my life. I'm not going to pretend I haven't done wrong, but I can't convince anybody that I'm not running around the country killin' young girls," he said.
State Police turned over the results of their investigation to the Boone County prosecutor, who has declined to comment on the case. Investigator Mark Harper, working with the Sherrill family, claims he's even learned where Shannon's body is located, but has been told by Indiana authorities not to interfere in the investigation.
According to Harper, "We've offered to come up with more information and we've been told not to."
Mike Sherrill, now in frail health, fears he's won't live long enough to bring his daughter's remains home, but still holds out hope that after 21 years, investigators are close solving a tragic mystery.