DALLAS, Ore. — The Polk County Sheriff’s Office says a Bandon man who is running for Coos County commissioner is a “strong person of interest” in the 2004 disappearance of his brother.
Sheriff Bob Wolfe said he has information that connects Dale A. Pennie to the disappearance of his brother Glenn Pennie.
The 56-year-old electrician, who lived alone, has been missing since a few days before he was set to travel to California for a probate hearing regarding the inheritance of his deceased father. The brothers had been in a dispute over the nearly $1.5 million inheritance since George Pennie died in 2003. Wolfe said he believes the dispute over the estate played a role in Pennie’s disappearance.
Police found Glenn Pennie’s pickup in his driveway unlocked, with packed suitcases, important documents and the keys all still inside. A neighbor was the last person to see him alive that morning.
“We have always considered Dale a strong person of interest,” Wolfe said. “We are continuing to get information that leads us back to Dale.”
Wolfe declined to release that information, saying the case was still under investigation.
Dale Pennie adamantly denies he had anything to do with his brother’s disappearance and says the accusations are all part of a smear campaign to thwart his campaign.
“They are barking up the wrong tree,” Pennie said. “I have nothing to hide and nothing to do with it.”
Wolfe said that while they don’t have concrete proof Pennie is dead, foul play is suspected. There were no signs of a struggle at the crime scene, and Wolf said police conducted an extensive 52 square-mile search for Pennie that included airplanes and all-terrain vehicles in the days after he went missing.
Wolfe said the Pennie brothers never really saw eye-to-eye, and Dale Pennie confirmed his relationship with his brother was not good, saying he was bullied by him.
When asked if he missed his brother, Pennie said, “No. The way he was and the way he treated my father, I don’t want anything to do with him.”
Pennie said police questioned him and accused him of playing a part in the case, but that he was in Bandon when his brother disappeared. He said his alibi was corroborated by witnesses. Pennie also denied he could have benefited financially from Glennn’s death.
“If they had strong reason, they would be down here arresting me,” Pennie said. “The police we have in Polk County and Coos County are a bunch of idiots. This is just another smear against my good name.”
Pennie said he was awarded $29,000 from his father’s estate and that Glennn’s daughter, Christina, received the rest, but Wolfe said the estate was still tied up in court.
Wolfe said new information in the case will prompt investigators to re-interview Pennie, his wife and other family members they believe have given them false information.
His office is offering a $10,000 reward for information that can help close the case, and a billboard has been placed on I-5 seeking assistance from the public.
“We are hoping people can come forward,” Wolfe said