Peacock’s ‘Monster in the Shadows’ is a three-part docuseries that delves into the mysterious disappearance of Brittney Nicole Wood in Alabama. While the case started as an investigation into her disappearance in 2012, the chain of events that followed revealed some disturbing secrets within the Wood family, with many of Brittney’s closest relatives being convicted in relation to various sex crimes that spanned generations. The docuseries tries to bring the spotlight back to Brittney’s case. So, let’s find out what happened, shall we?
Was Brittney Wood Found?
Brittney was a 19-year-old who lived with her mother, Chessie Wood, in Mobile, Alabama. She had a two-year-old daughter she was caring for at the time. On May 30, 2012, the young girl left home at around 7 PM and was initially thought to be meeting a friend. Family members didn’t think much of it when they didn’t hear from her because it wasn’t unusual for her to be gone for days at a time.
But panic set in after a couple of days when Brittney’s loved ones couldn’t reach her through the phone. She was reported missing on June 2. Later, it came to light that Brittney was actually with her uncle, Donald Holland, who picked her up from close to her home and took her to a house in Baldwin County, Alabama, where he was living. The authorities would never get to talk to him because he died by suicide. On June 1, Donald shot himself in the head in his car at a secluded location. Brittney’s phone battery was later found in his car, although the phone itself has never been recovered.
The gun used by Donald was later confirmed to be Brittney’s. The family only realized Brittney was missing after Donald died. While the search for Brittney went on, horrific details of a sex ring where juveniles were abused multiple times came to light. Donald, who was already under investigation for this, was considered the ring leader, and many members of the Wood family were arrested on various charges that involved crimes against minors. The ones that were convicted included Brittney’s aunts and uncles. Brittney was also believed to be a victim of the abuse.
But when it came to Brittney’s whereabouts, the leads were scant. The authorities looked into Brittney’s cellphone records and conducted extensive searches with no success. The authorities considered the abuse investigation and Brittney as connected more than a year after her disappearance. In the end, Brittney has still not been found, and what happened to her has remained a mystery. Chessie believed that Donnie’s wife Wendy, who is also her sister, knew where Brittney was.
Is Brittney Nicole Smith Dead or Alive?
Brittney or her remains have not been found even after about 9 years. Investigators believed that she is dead. The Baldwin County Sheriff said, “There is no evidence that would suggest she is still alive. We have her entered into the computer as a missing person. She has not come across anybody else’s radar anywhere in the U.S. When you balance the evidence out, it’s overwhelmingly that she is probably deceased.” The case, though, has remained open. In July 2020, an age-progressed picture of Brittney led the authorities to an address in Grand Bay, Alabama. Cadaver dogs picked up something, leading to a dig in the area, but in the end, nothing substantial relating to the case was uncovered.
Read More: Where is Chessie Wood Now?