Vonnie S. Taysom – Shelley, Idaho 1966

Thirteen-year-old Vonnie Taysom was enjoying her Christmas vacation in the small town of Shelley, Idaho in December of 1966.  According to press reports, she had lunch with her mother on Dec. 30th and returned home to their South Park address around 12:30 P.M. to wait for a friend to arrive.  A cousin of Vonnie’s family was also being married the same day in Idaho Falls.

Approximately 2 hours later, her uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. James B. and Tillie Mitchell Rolph, who lived next door, arrived to use the Taysom’s dryer. They found Vonnie in the basement game room, deceased. She had been stabbed multiple times with what police said appeared to be a short-blade knife. Bloody, barefoot footprints were found in the snow outside, as well as smudges of blood along an exit stairway. In 1967 press articles, Shelley Police Chief Beck stated there were no signs of a struggle and she did not appear to be sexually assaulted.

Idaho Falls Police Chief Pollock administered at least three lie detector tests, to a neighbor, a juvenile, and an adult. A plan was made for all Shelley Junior High students to be fingerprinted, but was cancelled. No arrests were made in Vonnie’s murder.

Due to the length of time since this murder, it is possible the guilty party is deceased. Did they admit their guilt to anyone before their death? If people covered for the guilty party, will they come forward?

Contact the Shelley Police Department if you have information to help this case.

Taysom poster