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Missing Fallbrook family is in Mexico, investigators say

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SAN DIEGO — A family of four that disappeared mysteriously from their Fallbrook home three years ago most likely traveled to Mexico of their own free will, Sheriff’s investigators said Tuesday.

The case of the McStay family garnered national attention after it was profiled on “America’s Most Wanted” and Discovery Channel’s “Disappeared.”

Joseph McStay, his wife Summer, and their two sons Gianni, 5, and Joseph, 3, were last seen on Feb. 4, 2010. McStay’s brother, Mike, contacted the Sheriff’s Department because he hadn’t heard from them.Authorities found their white Isuzu Trooper in San Ysidro four days later.

Deputies have conducted an exhaustive missing person investigation over the past three years, authorities said. They have followed up hundreds of tips and worked closely with the FBI. Investibators said they believe that the family voluntarily traveled to Mexico. Detectives have examined border-crossing surveillance as well as checked hospitals, jails, and morgues in Mexico.

The McStays have not contacted friends or family since they disappeared, investigators said.

Because the family is believed to be out of the country, the Sheriff’s Department has transferred the case to the FBI, although Sheriff’s detectives will continue to be part of the investigation in a support role, department officials said.

Anyone with information about the family’s whereabouts is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477. The agency is offering up to $1,000 for Information leading to a resolution of the case.


  • Jerry

    Why did they all of a sudden come out with this? What prompted this disclosure? New Information?? Doesn't tell you anything except speculation.

  • Brad T

    I've been following this case, and this story does not seem to provide anything new. For instance, WHY do investigators "believe" they went to Mexico voluntarily ? Could we have some investigative journalism here and answer at least that ? Even if they did go to Mexico voluntarily, if something happened to them, shouldn't the investigation be ongoing ? Unless their lives were in immediate danger, why would they leave their car and things behind ? Was there ever any evidence that the family took their money with them ? A followup with detail would be nice – thanks !

  • tina

    something with these two adults.. it is weird
    see courts and faul play
    they are not missing because someone wants to hurt them I believe that they work for someone that they move. they know that they are looking for them but how long ? what does this mean to the courts ?

    • guest

      nahhh not weird…

      she/mother/wife is asian..that means he wasnt making ENOUGH $$, for her p…., ah life style.
      so they move to's somewhat cheaper than US

  • guest

    So the sheriff's dept. and the FBI will look for illegal American aliens in Mexico, but they won't look for Illegal Mexican aliens in the United States? What's up with that?

  • guest

    Make em pick strawberries to work off the expense created by countless law enforcement hours looking for them…

  • guest

    The wife was part asian, part italian and another ethnic heritage I can't remember…argentina I believe is where her great grandmother was from. NOBODY left voluntaryily when they have 100,000 in the bank, taking nothing with them, not using credit cards to support themselves…and no way to come back across the border back into California legally. The children would have to have birth certificates, which one was found in their home, and parents would have to have passports. The father's passport was in the house, the mother's passport was expired….so what now? I don't believe it is them crossing the border freely…for all we know there could have been people both in front of them and behind them to hinder any kind of escape….but still the big WHY? My sorrow is that this family has encountered foul play…at this point….no one know's, and with much sympathy to the family's will never know.

  • renee

    I think they need to investigate the previous owners/tenants of that house….what happen to the previous owners? Who were they? Could they have moved for some reason???? What was the reason? Could they have been mis ID'd as the previous owners. Could there have been something in the house that was hidden by others and they came back to get it and this family was moving in and in the way? Could the children been stolen? They look Hispanic/Spanish. (If they saw the vehicle leaving the house is there any footage of anyone entering the house? If not how would they have gotten in the house….from hoping the back house fence???)

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