PHOENIX, Ore. — Nearly a year after the former Disney Mouseketeer vanished, two people have been arrested not in connection with his death but in connection with his stolen car.
Former Mouseketeer and Phoenix resident, Dennis Day, was last seen walking down his driveway last summer saying he was going to visit friends. His car was later found along the coast with two people inside who police said were unfamiliar to Day.
Lori Declusin and Wanda Garcia were arrested this week. Both were charged with felony unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. Garcia was also charged with felony theft after court documents allege Garcia stole a broach belonging to Day and his husband, Ernie Caswell, and sold it.
According to court documents, the pair knowingly stole Dennis Day and husband Henry Caswell’s car on July 19th, 2018. A body was found inside Day’s Phoenix home in April. While DNA results were inconclusive, Day’s family said it was him.
OSP has told NBC5 News they believe foul play is involved.
Lori Declusin was released on her own recognizance after a public defender pleaded “not guilty” on her behalf on Thursday. Friday, Wanda Garcia pleaded “not guilty” but was kept in jail because of her extensive criminal record.
“This is something that’s really not my character at all,” Garcia said in court.
To date, no one has been charged in Day’s disappearance or death.
No one has ever been publicly named a suspect.
6/30/2019 Update – This article has been updated to reflect that court documents show Wanda Garcia was not in the car when it was found by police in Coos County. On July 26, 2018, a man and woman were found in Coos County driving Day’s car. The woman was cited for driving while suspended and Day’s vehicle was impounded. The pair were not arrested.
Amanda Rose is a multimedia journalist for NBC5 News. Amanda graduated from Columbia University earning a Master’s degree in Journalism. She also received a Bachelor’s degree in English with a specialization in literature from the University of British Columbia.
She’s a Los Angeles native, but is thrilled to return to the beautiful Pacific Northwest and is passionate about reporting on the criminal justice system.