Coral Pearl Hall

1 2 AP
Left and Center: Coral, circa 1998;
Right: Age-progression to age 25 (circa 2009)

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Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

  • Missing Since: September 22, 1998 from Flint, Michigan
  • Classification: Endangered Missing
  • Date of Birth: September 21, 1984
  • Age: 14 years old
  • Height and Weight: 4'11, 85 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian female. Blonde hair, blue eyes. Coral has a round scar or mark on the base of her neck at the front. Her ears are pierced.
  • Clothing/Jewelry Description: A gray and blue t-shirt, a green sweatshirt, blue jeans, white sneakers and possibly Pooh Bear earrings.
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    Details of Disappearance

    Coral was last seen in Flint, Michigan on September 22, 1998, the day after her fourteenth birthday. She lived with her grandmother, Lois Arlene Janish, and Janish's boyfriend in an apartment on Ann Arbor Street. She left her grandmother's apartment to go to another apartment upstairs and return a book. She never returned, and was reported missing two days later.

    Earlier on the same day Coral disappeared, an older friend, Melissa Pierce, took her to the state Department of Human Services (DHS) to report she was being abused or neglected. Late that night, Coral called Pierce from a pay phone at Ann Arbor and West Court streets near the White Horse Tavern. Coral said she was having trouble at home and needed to leave Flint. She asked Pierce if she could go and live with her. Pierce was in another part of the state at the time. She got a ride to Flint with her uncle, but by the time they arrived Coral had vanished. Pierce and her uncle drove around looking for her, but couldn't find her. She has never been heard from again.

    Coral was raised by her grandmother, Lois Janish, as her mother was found to be an unfit parent. Her mother, who maintained sporadic contact with her, died of a drug overdose in 1996. Her father's identity is unknown. Coral grew up in poverty; she and Janish changed residences frequently and often relied on public assistance, such as food stamps, to meet their needs. The teen's younger half-sister was raised separately from her and eventually placed in foster care. The girls last saw each other at their mother's funeral.

    Coral attended McKinley Middle School in 1998. Prior to her disappearance, she had been getting into trouble for being truant from school, rebelling against her grandmother's rules and associating with drug users. Her loved ones describe her as an intelligent but angry, withdrawn teenager. She had missed so much school that foster care placement was being considered. The DHS had investigated Janish for abusing and/or medically neglecting Coral five times.

    For over a decade after Coral's disappearance, investigators said they believed she'd run away to escape the troubles in her life and possibly traveled to Los Angeles, California with an adult boyfriend. However, in July 2013, Janish was charged with her granddaughter's murder. A photo of her is posted below this case summary. Authorities stated she had always been a suspect in Coral's disappearance and had given inconsistent statements over the years. They believe her boyfriend was also involved in Coral's death, but he died of alcohol-related complications in 2000. He had been released from prison shortly before Coral vanished, and she had accused him of sexual abuse. The boyfriend allegedly said he wasn't going to return to prison because of her allegations.

    If convicted, Janish could face a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. Investigators stated that during interrogations in 2011 and 2012, Janish admitted smoking crack cocaine and said her granddaughter was dead. She allegedly confessed to beating Coral to death with a hammer and said she and her boyfriend dismembered her granddaughter's body, but altered and recanted her story more than once.

    Foul play is suspected in Coral's case due to the circumstances involved. Her body has never been found.

    Janish
    Above: Lois Janish

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    Investigating Agency
    If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
    Flint Police Department
    810-766-7036

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    Source Information
    The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
    The Flint Journal
    NamUs
    WNEM 5
    The Daily Mail

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    Updated 7 times since October 12, 2004.

    Last updated August 3, 2013; details of disappearance updated.

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