Fort Worth

Fort Worth woman's remains identified 17 years after disappearance

NBC Universal, Inc.

17 years after a Fort Worth woman went missing, police say her remains have been identified.

Thursday, Fort Worth Police confirmed remains found near railroad tracks along South Hughes Avenue, near East Rosedale Street, back in March belonged to Taalibah Fatin Bint Islam.

Islam was reported missing in 2006 when she was just 20 years old.

Years later, her ex-boyfriend would be sent to prison for the disappearance of another Tarrant County woman, Typhenie Johnson.

Johnson's disappearance made major headlines in North Texas when she went missing in 2016, 10 years after Islam vanished.

For six years, Art Sahlstein has led a loyal group of community members in regular searches for both women.

"We've searched between 80 and 100 square miles from our area here,” said Sahlstein.

Though he never knew either, Sahlstsein, like others, has grown committed to the case.

"A lot of times I'd ask myself, 'Well why aren't we finding things?' Well, you just can't lose hope. You just have to keep doing it,” he said.

Though he said this week’s announcement of a positive identification for Islam’s remains was met with heartache for her family, it also reenergizes the search for answers in both women’s cases.

"My heart just dropped. I feel sorry for the family. My prayers go out to the family,” said Johnson’s aunt Janelle Hofeldt.

Despite the discovery, Hofeldt said she believes both families still lack closure as Christopher Revill, an ex-boyfriend of both women, continues to withhold information.

Though Johnson was never found, Revill's serving a life sentence for aggravated kidnapping in her case.

He's long been accused of Islam’s disappearance but never charged.

"How can he look at himself in the mirror every single day knowing what he did?" she said.

Now as Islam's family prepares to finally lay her to rest, the search for Johnson continues. 

"I'm reenergized to seeing this to the end. This is a big step. We find one, we'll find the other. That's the main thing. I truly believe that,” said Sahlstein.

Meanwhile family holds onto hope, fighting for justice for two women whose stories are now forever linked.

"Like Typhenie always says, never going to quit, and that's what we're going to go by. We're never going to quit,” said Hofeldt.

There's a $20,000 reward for information leading to a confirmed location for Johnson.

Information about search parties and updates in the case are shared via a Facebook page.

Contact Us