Richard Pulsifer Jr. was only 6-years-old when he claimed to have last seen his 3-year-old sister, Michelle. Over the years, the enduring memory became crucial, with the authorities believing that the young girl was murdered by the kids’ mother, Donna Prentice, and her boyfriend at the time, James Michael Kent. NBC News’ ‘Dateline: The Girl in the Little Blue Dress’ focuses on this very case and features an interview with Rich Jr. So, if you’re wondering where he might be today, we’ve got you covered.
Who is Rich Pulsifer Jr.?
Sometime in July 1969, Rich Jr. suddenly moved from California to Illinois with Donna, Mike, and Mike’s son. However, his young sister, Michelle, was nowhere to be seen. Around the same time, Rich Jr.’s father, Richard Sr. Pulsifer AKA Dick, came for a visit, only to realize his kids were gone. It wasn’t until about a year later that Donna returned with Rich Jr., but she refused to tell Dick where Michelle was.
But when Dick spoke to Rich Jr., he learned something disturbing. Then only six years old, Rich Jr. said that he had not seen his sister since before moving to Illinois. He later talked about the haunting memory of when he last saw Michelle. According to Rich Jr., Michelle came to his room during the early morning hours around July 4, 1969. At the time, he claimed that she asked him to hide her, but within minutes, Donna came and took Michelle away.
It was the last time Rich Jr. saw his sister. The following day, he remembered seeing a large cardboard box covered with blankets in the garage. Upon noticing Rich Jr. there, Donna asked him to leave and not come back in. When they moved, Rich Jr. was told they didn’t have space to take Michelle with them, so she would live with relatives. Over the years, he struggled to make sense of what happened.
Rich Jr. also talked about hearing what his mother said one night. He mentioned, “I think it was my junior year. I don’t recall exactly. But I woke up to her crying. Her bedroom door was closed. And I heard Michelle’s name, and I also heard “dead.” But I was not quite coherent, and I was just barely awake.” Then, in 1980, Rich Jr. reconnected with his father after the latter learned they were living in Wisconsin. Dick received a court order to pay child support for Rich Jr. but not for Michelle.
Once Rich Jr. turned 18, he moved to California to live with his father. Sometime during the late 1980s, he remembered calling her mother to ask about Michelle. He stated, “And she just flat out said, ‘I’m not going to tell you.’ I said, ‘Well, you know, I’m her brother. Don’t you think I have the right to– to know?’ And she goes, ‘Rich, you know, things happened. We didn’t have a whole lot of money, and we couldn’t keep all three of you. And be grateful that I chose you.’ According to Rich Jr., Donna claimed that Michelle was still alive.
Where is Rich Pulsifer Jr. Today?
The authorities eventually arrested Donna and Mike in 2004. But by then, Rich Jr. had given up finding Michelle’s remains. He just hoped for closure. Furthermore, Rich Jr. was present during both of Donna’s trials and testified during the first one. Regarding Donna, he said, “I have come to the point where when I look at my mom, I just see someone who knows something about what happened to my sister.”
In the end, Donna was never convicted of killing Michelle. Despite a difficult end to the saga, Rich Jr. has done his best to move on with his life. He currently lives in Santa Maria, California, and is an Investor/Consultant at Pulsifer Enterprises LLC. He previously worked as the Circulation Director for Santa Maria Times. On the personal front, Rich Jr. has a son and has been in a relationship with Viviani Baldini since 2010. He enjoys traveling with her during their spare time. From what we can tell, Rich Jr. also learned martial arts at his father’s studio.
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