Chyenne Kircher Murder: Where is Terry Abbas Now?

It was back in 2011 when Chyenne Rose Kircher suddenly vanished from her home with a single trace left behind, leaving not just her loved ones but also the entire nation shaken to its very core. After all, as carefully explored in CBS’ ‘FBI True: The Disappearance of Chyenne Kircher,’ what was initially believed to be an angsty runaway case soon turned out to be a heinous familial homicide. So now, if you simply wish to learn more about the same — with a focus on the events to have transpired, its ensuing investigations, and the overall aftermath — we’ve got the details for you.

How Did Chyenne Kircher Die?

Although 14-year-old Chyenne was often considered a rather typical teen owing to her bubbly, creative, social personality, the truth is she was far from it once she actually stepped inside her home. That’s because the environment of her small town East Dubuque, Illinois, residence could only be described as evidently dysfunctional or tumultuous because of the blended brood living within. Therefore, when she failed to turn up at school on October 13, 2011, and a handwritten note stating she was leaving for good in the hopes of a better life was discovered in her car, it was quite believable.

Nevertheless, Chyenne’s family reported her missing and sparked an extensive hunt spanning the entire Jo Daviess County, just for it to yield absolutely nothing in terms of her or any evidence. Her loved ones, law enforcement officials, as well as volunteers all did their best to uncover even the littlest clue for weeks on end, yet to no avail — though her mother truly refused to lose hope. Lorie Lyons actually didn’t believe her daughter would have run away after writing “you did nothing wrong,” so she suspected maybe something happened at school, but even that proved inconsequential.

The truth is the search for Chyenne soon hit a dead end, so it wasn’t until authorities from all four cities in the county, the sheriff’s department, plus the Illinois State Police decided to join forces to form a Critical Incident Response Team to further investigate her matter in 2013 that new information came to light. In fact, within mere months, they were able to not only ascertain that the teen had been killed but also identify her killer, who then led them directly to her burial spot in a wooded area less than 100 yards from the family home. She’d been sexually assaulted before being strangled to death with bare hands.

Who Killed Chyenne Kircher?

Chyenne’s killer was none other than her stepfather, Terry Abbas. While it’s true this case was initially considered a runaway through and through, suspicion on the latter arose in 2013 as the re-investigation pushed some of her friends to come forward with significant claims. They actually told officials the teen had previously accused him of sexual assault a few times during their private conversations, which broke the case wide open. His rather calm behavior in the days following Chyenne’s disappearance and the known household issues didn’t help his case either — in other words, detectives quickly zeroed in on him for good.

Abbas was almost immediately taken into custody for interrogation, and although he passed a polygraph test with flying colors, his one-on-one with an investigator became his utter downfall. That’s because he grew so nervous he began fumbling his story until the point it completely unraveled, and he had no choice but to confess everything he did to the bright, young 14-year-old. According to police records, he said he’d cornered Chyenne in their backyard to have sex, following which he strangled her in a sudden fit of rage and then simply decided to bury her in a 5′ deep unmarked grave.

Where is Terry Abbas Now?

Terry was indicted on criminal charges almost as soon as he led officials to Chyenne’s burial space, following which an autopsy of her decomposed remains corroborated a majority of his statements. As a result, to avoid a lengthy trial as well as the death penalty, he pleaded guilty to six different charges – three counts of murder, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, and one count of concealing a homicidal death. Terry was subsequently sentenced to the maximum of life in prison without the possibility of parole for the murder convictions, 7 years each for the sex crimes, plus 5 years for the concealment count, all to run concurrently. In other words, Terry remains behind bars to this day — the 51-year-old is currently incarcerated at the maximum-security Menard Correctional Center in Chester, Illinois.

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