Linda D. Smith – Pocatello, Idaho 1981

On June 14, 1981 in the early AM hours, Linda Smith was taken from her home at 239 N. 8th in Pocatello, Idaho. Linda struggled with a man who was possibly in his 20s-30s with dirty blonde hair, a full beard and mustache. Linda’s younger brother, Ben, was 9 at the time and woke up during the struggle. He wrestled with the stranger, was pushed to the ground, and ran to find help at a neighbor’s. Ben recalls the smell of sweat and alcohol on the stranger as he dragged Linda outside. There may have been a dark colored van nearby.

Linda had been home babysitting her brother, while her mother, Norine was out with friends and an older sister Lori spent the night with grandparents.

Linda was initially thought of as a runaway, but later believed murdered when her clothing and remains were found. Police were criticized at the time for not believing Ben’s story about the abduction. She was a student at Franklin Junior High at the time of her abduction, having transferred there from Alameda Junior High in February of 1981.

One week after Linda’s abduction, her clothing was found scattered off what is now exit 71 in Pocatello. In May of 1982, her remains were found by children above Hospital Way, below the Sagewood Hills subdivision in a ravine. Back then; it was mostly dry and undeveloped. It is the current site of Ruby Tuesday restaurant in Pocatello.

Linda’s mother, like many in the early 1980’s, was active in the CB community. Her moniker was “White Angel”. It is unknown what connection, if any, this has to Linda’s death. Linda’s father, Larry Ben Smith Sr., was divorced from Norine at the time. Both of Linda’s parents have passed.

The family moved from Pocatello, but has remained very active and involved in her case. The site of Linda’s abduction is now the location of Parrish Law Office.

Contact the Pocatello Police Department if you have any information about the death of Linda Smith.

Smith poster