CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

JayMac: Don’t blame Mackenzie Lueck for her disappearance

Jun 27, 2019, 5:19 PM | Updated: 5:23 pm

mackenzie lueck missing...

In this surveillance image from Salt Lake International Airport, Mackenzie Lueck is seen collecting her luggage and leaving the terminal. Police are hoping neighbors near Hatch Park in North Salt Lake may also have surveillance footage to help them retrace Lueck's steps. Photo: Salt Lake City Police

DISCLAIMER: the following is an opinion piece and does not necessarily reflect the views of KSL Newsradio or its ownership.

As news updates come forward in the vanishing of Mackenzie Lueck, it’s important to remember that the missing-person case is still developing and to refrain from jumping to conclusions — until all the facts are in — about what happened, who is responsible, where the victim is and whether she had anything to do with her own disappearance. There is still a lot that remains unknown. But, of course, it’s human nature to fill in the blanks without knowing all the facts.

Lueck, 23, was last seen by a Lyft driver who dropped her off at Hatch Park in North Salt Lake early at about 3 a.m. on June 17 after she arrived at Salt Lake International Airport — where she was spotted on video — from a trip to California. The Lyft driver reported seeing her get into a vehicle with someone else. And that was the last anyone has heard from Lueck.

She missed midterms this week and also her flight back home to California on Sunday for a wedding.

That leads me to believe something nefarious has happened here. A young woman who apparently used her cellphone for everything is now — silent.

Unknowns, gaps and ????

Police are now trying to locate a mattress and box spring from a Fairpark home, which police say is connected to the investigation.

Police searched the home and dug holes in the backyard. The unidentified homeowner, who rents out the basement as an Airbnb, is a person of interest in the case, police said.

missing mackenzie lueck

Police served a search warrant Wednesday night into Thursday morning they say is related to the disappearance of Mackenzie Lueck. Photo: Kelli Pierce / KSL Newsradio

The mattress and box spring, which were apparently given away last week, the items found by police in the home and the homeowner’s possible connection to Lueck remain unknown. No arrests have been made.

I’m speculating here but it sounds more like she disappeared against her will. Now the question becomes: Is she still alive?

SeekingArrangement.com spokeswoman Kimberly De La Cruz told KSL TV the company is aware of reports that Lueck was on their website, but did not confirm that Lueck had an account. The site facilitates transactional relationships between people looking for so-called “Sugar Daddies” and “Sugar Mamas” and “Sugar Babies,” allowing users to build relationships on their own terms, according to the site. She said the company has no way to monitor activity if a conversation between members moves off the site.

In a statement on Thursday, the Utah Domestic Violence Coalition urged people who are concerned about Lueck’s disappearance not to resort to blaming the victim.

“While we do not know the details of Mackenzie’s disappearance, we do know that victim blaming and shaming is inappropriate and unacceptable,” the coalition said. “Our focus should solely be on the safety and wellbeing of Mackenzie Lueck.”

It’s unfortunate that victim-blamers decide that a person’s life is not as valued because they have made choices the blamers and shamers disagree with.

It doesn’t matter what choices she has made, she’s still entitled to her life. However, it’s important to point out that it can be dangerous to meet with strangers if that’s what happened here. If she made that choice, she may have walked into harm’s way.

But to attack her or victim-blame her — easy to do in today’s world — is something I would caution anyone against until all the facts are known. Stand tall and don’t participate in that discussion.

Jay Mcfarland hosts the JayMac News Show, weekdays from 12:30 to 3 p.m. on KSL Newsradio, as well as the fictional podcast, Hosts of Eden. KSL Newsradio is part of Bonneville Media and based in Salt Lake City, Utah.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Crime, Police + Courts

Former president Donald Trump, Manhattan trial...

MICHAEL R. SISAK

With trial starting next month, Manhattan DA asks judge for a gag order in Trump’s hush-money case

The Manhattan DA's office asked that Trump be barred from making or directing others to make public statements about people involved in the case.

11 hours ago

Kathy Brandel and her husband of 27 years, Ralph Hendry...

Sharif Paget, Chris Boyette and Polo Sandoval, CNN

Family of Americans believed dead after yacht allegedly hijacked in Grenada describe scene of violence

The family of two Americans who may have been killed in an alleged yacht high jacking in Granada hope the couple might be found alive.

17 hours ago

Police tape drapes the crime scene on a trail behind Lake Herrick at the University of Georgia in A...

Ashley R. Williams, Raja Razek, Priscilla Alvarez, Isabel Rosales and Jaide Timm-Garcia, CNN

Questions remain in investigation of death of Augusta University student found on UGA campus

As the investigation continues into the death of an Augusta University student, officials confirmed the immigration status of a suspect.

18 hours ago

A car ran into a house in Hurricane Sunday morning, police say. No injuries to the driver or the oc...

Devin Oldroyd

Car crashes into house in Hurricane Sunday morning

A car ran into a house in Hurricane Sunday morning, police say. No injuries to the driver or the occupants of the house were reported.

1 day ago

FILE — Handcuffs hang from a rail inside the Wasatch entry of the old Utah State Prison in Draper...

Mary Culbertson, KSLTV

Man accused of manslaughter after allegedly selling fentanyl that led to overdose

One man was arrested and accused of manslaughter after authorities believe he sold fentanyl to a victim who died of overdose.

1 day ago

Charles E. Escalera, 21...

Michelle Watson and Maria Sole Campinoti, CNN

Kentucky man arrested in connection with death of Campbellsville University student

A man has been arrested in connection with the death of a student at Campbellsville University in Kentucky.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

front of the Butch Cassidy museum with a man in a cowboy hat standing in the doorway...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking Back: The History of Bear Lake

The history of Bear Lake is full of fascinating stories. At over 250,000 years old, the lake has seen generations of people visit its shores.

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

JayMac: Don’t blame Mackenzie Lueck for her disappearance