By all accounts, Bryce Laspisa was a typical college student. He was charismatic, talented, and youthful.
The family was relatively close-knit when Michael and Karen Laspisa had just one kid together. Red-haired Bryce’s life was about to take an extraordinary turn.
Instead of being proud of their son’s academic achievements, Bryce Laspisa’s parents are left wondering, “What happened to our son?”
Who was Bryce Laspisa?
Bryce Laspisa, the sole child of Michael and Karen Laspisa, was born and raised in Illinois. The family moved to California not long after he graduated from high school in 2012.
Bryce Laspisa appeared to have little difficulty adapting to life in California. One of the most accomplished students at Sierra College in Rocklin, he was a great artist who studied graphic and industrial design.
He was still a novice, but he already had a substantial body of work to show for it. When people met Bryce, they were immediately at ease because of his upbeat and welcoming demeanor.
During his first year at Sierra College, he gained several new friends and began dating another student, Kim Sly.
He returned to his parents’ Laguna Niguel, California, home at the end of the academic year, which was around 465 miles from his institution.
They were inseparable, and his return home was a joy for him. It provided him a head start on the credits he would need to complete his degree by attending an English class at a nearby institution.
August 26th marked the start of this year’s autumn semester. On that day, Bryce Laspisa took a web design lesson and a speech class. That night, he called his mother to tell her how much she meant to him.
According to Karen, the conversation had been entirely normal. Bryce was enthusiastic and excited about the new school year, and it didn’t appear she needed to be concerned about anything.
People who saw Bryce Laspisa daily, though, expressed concern. Having returned to Rocklin two weeks prior, his behavior and attitude had also deteriorated.
The Symptoms Of Declining Behavior
Bryce Laspisa had never been a mean-spirited teen; he was just like any other college student. Bryce Laspisa past with alcohol and drugs was typical for a teenager just beginning to explore the world.
His parents discovered he had been drinking at parties and probably smoked marijuana. However, there was no indication of a problem with addiction.
Bryce Laspisa’s friends and family were surprised to see an unexpected rise in his alcohol use. At this point, Bryce was drinking every day, and he would simply deny that anything was wrong if someone asked him about it.
He finally acknowledged taking Vyvanse after some resistance from his partner and some self-examination.
When school began, things began to spiral out of hand rapidly.
His weird behavior became more pronounced on Tuesday. But Kim was aware that this wasn’t just excessive alcohol consumption.
She went to Bryce Laspisa, worried, to find out what was wrong, but he assured her that nothing was. When Kim continued to question him, he finally admitted that he had taken the anti-anxiety medicine Vyvanse in addition to drinking.
Unlike methamphetamine, Vyvanse is an amphetamine-based drug with a high stimulant impact on a person.
Because of its ability to keep the user awake for long periods, it has become a popular active drug on many college campuses.
The couple’s situation deteriorated rapidly from that point on. With its similarity to methamphetamine, Vyvanse became an active and academic tool on college campuses across the United States.
In Bryce Laspisa’s case, Kim noted these effects because he had taken the substance with a friend to stay up all night drinking and playing video games.
Bryce Laspisa was unconcerned by Kim’s anxiety, and he didn’t seem to think it was a big deal.
Kim’s suspicions about him seemed to bother him, so he texted her to claim that she’d be better off without him. Confused, she inquired whether he was ending their relationship, and he confirmed that they were ending it.
Bryce Laspisa called his mother at about 11:00 p.m. that night from Kim’s Chico apartment. Even though he had not altered his mind about breaking up with Kim, Bryce Laspisa still refused to give any answers as to why he made such a quick choice.
To prevent him from driving home alone after his recent touch of insanity, Kim took his keys away from him and told him to go nap instead.
Bryce Laspisa stated that he preferred to leave the house to get his keys back. When Kim refused, he dialed his mother’s number.
He demanded that his mother speak to Kim and order her to stop him from leaving. Kim gave Bryce Laspisa his car keys at about 11:30 p.m. after talking to Karen.
Was Bryce In Trouble?
A roadside assistance request had been made for one of Bryce’s parents’ vehicles the night before. The following day, his parents received an automated message from their insurance company confirming this.
Because Bryce was driving back from Kim’s place, they decided to phone him to see if he had any car trouble. That night, Bryce’s roommate informed them that he had not returned home.
Bryce Laspisa didn’t answer Karen’s cell phone when she tried to contact him. Even yet, the couple could locate the repair company that had helped Bryce using the internet.
They learned the name of the auto business that had rescued Bryce Laspisa due to this.
At around 9:00 a.m. the same morning, they discovered that Bryce had contacted roadside help from the little village of Buttonwillow, which is more than 350 miles away from Kim’s apartment in Buttonwillow.
It was obvious that Bryce Laspisa had been driving nonstop all night to get to the meeting place.
Bryce’s parents could obtain an employee called Christian to assist them after reaching the repair shop.
He told Karen that Bryce had only made it to the Buttonwillow Rest Area before running out of petrol and that Christian had given him three gallons of gas at 9:15 am when Christian made the call.
Christian returned to the rest area to see if Bryce was still there after hearing from Karen that she had been unable to contact her son.
After almost three hours since the request for roadside help, Christian didn’t expect to meet Bryce. He felt that Bryce had most likely proceeded on to his destination.
When he arrived at the rest stop, he was astounded to see Bryce sitting in the same spot in his car as he had been earlier that morning.
Even more so when Christian handed Bryce his cell phone and said his mother wanted to chat with him. Bryce seemed surprised.
Despite her relief at finally hearing her son’s voice, Karen remained concerned about the overall situation. When she inquired what he was up to, Bryce was utterly stumped.
Bryce’s voice was clear, and his body language did not suggest he was inebriated, despite providing little information.
Karen opted to postpone her questioning of Bryce because he was only a few hours away from Laguna Niguel.
Bryce would be back home in no time if he just got back on Interstate 5. When Bryce returned to the house, she advised him to fill up his car’s gas tank and said they’d be waiting for him at 3:00 pm. Bryce readily agreed.
Staying at the Same Spot for 13 Hours in Buttonwillow
When he didn’t arrive in Rocklin as expected, his parents immediately contacted the police due to his odd behavior.
Bryce’s parents became concerned when he hadn’t gotten home by 3:30 p.m. They couldn’t reach Bryce because, yet again, he wasn’t answering his cell phone when they tried.
They attempted to convince themselves that Bryce was stopped in traffic somewhere, but as the hours wore on and there was still no word from him, they realized they were dealing with something much more severe than a simple traffic jam.
They alerted authorities about Bryce’s disappearance, fearing he had been involved in a car accident.
Police called Bryce’s phone carrier and requested that they ping his phone to see if they could locate him.
It wasn’t long before they found him. Bryce was still in Buttonwillow nearly 10 hours after he called for roadside help.
Two Kern County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to Bryce’s location after they arrived. He had filled up his tank to comply with his mother’s instructions, but instead of driving on I-5, he parked beside it.
To hide his amazement, he acted as if nothing had happened. He was courteous and accommodating, explaining that he was simply venting before continuing his journey home.
That is a reasonable explanation, but the deputies wanted to ensure he was fit to drive before letting him out of the station. They asked him to exit the vehicle to ensure his sincerity to safeguard his sobriety, and he breezed through the tests.
There were no drugs, alcohol, or weapons in his car when they searched it, and he let them in.
There was no need for the police to detain Bryce since he was not a minor and had not been involved in any criminal activity. They told him to phone his mother before they allowed him to go.
Even after telling him that she had been concerned, Bryce appeared reluctant to do so.
Bryce’s phone was eventually taken by one of the cops, who used it to make a personal phone call to Karen. When she asked him whether Bryce was okay, he assured her that he had passed their sobriety tests.
They were confident he was on the way, giving Karen peace of mind. She said to her son before returning, “Get some food and get back on the road.”
He promised to do so. The deputies left after Bryce chatted with his mother, believing he was now ready to drive home alone.
Bryce Laspisa was still sitting in the same position a few hours later when Christian drove by, despite his belief that he would arrive soon.
In a phone call to Karen, he told her that Bryce was still parked on the side of the road and promised to accompany him to the highway to ensure he got there safely.
Bryce appeared to grasp that he could not continue to wait, especially if the cops returned. He stopped for a soda at a gas station nearby and informed Christian he would start driving home.
Bryce Laspisa finally departed Buttonwillow after more than 13 hours when he got on Interstate 5. During 10 miles, Christian didn’t notice anything amiss with his driving.
Bryce had finally made it to Interstate 5 and was on his way to Laguna Niguel, so he contacted Karen to let her know he was on his way.
Car Accident in the Middle of the Night
Bryce Laspisa called his parents around 1:50 a.m. to let them know he’d taken a detour on the way to their house.
He planned to arrive at 3:25 a.m., according to his GPS estimate. At 2:09 a.m., he called back to say he was too tired to drive and would rest instead.
He woke up the following day to the sound of a California Highway Patrol officer knocking on his parents’ front door. Smashed up, but Bryce was nowhere to be found within.
The car had veered off a 25-foot embankment and landed on the road, where it was later found.
He drove up a hill towards Castaic Lake Recreation Area just minutes after informing his parents he was going to rest.
It wasn’t until a little more than two hours later that he drove back by, and headed up the mountain. Within an hour of this second flyby, Bryce’s car was determined to be completely damaged.
In the absence of Bryce, the cops were left to piece together the previous night’s events. They discovered, to their surprise, that the car had not driven off the embankment by chance.
Astonishingly, it appeared that Bryce Laspisa had deliberately kept the accelerator pressed the entire time.
A window had been shattered from the inside when it was discovered by police, allowing Bryce to flee.
Everything he needed, including his phone, was in the car. A duffel bag containing Bryce’s clothing and wallet was found alongside the vehicle on the roadside. The bag had been opened, and there were signs that someone had peeked inside before closing it again.
Only a tiny amount of blood was on the driver’s seat and no evidence that Bryce tried to get out of the car after the incident.
The Search for Bryce
Castaic Lake State Recreation Area’s large and natural environment was thoroughly searched by officers employing ground, water, and helicopter troops.
A site known as Government Cove was searched by dogs, but no trace of Bryce could be found. Despite their efforts, Bryce had vanished.
Investigators began to suspect that Bryce Laspisa had taken his own life because there were no signs of foul play.
According to Shawn, Bryce gave him his XBOX and a set of diamond earrings that belonged to his mother as a gift.
Even before the incident, some speculated that Bryce’s mental health might have been jeopardized even before the incident.
Bryce’s Disappearance Progress After Seven Years
Today, Bryce’s family still hopes that he is somewhere out there. Many believe that Bryce Laspisa died soon after he went missing, regardless of whether or not his parents think he is still alive.
Bryce Laspisa has yet to be found seven years after he ran away. In light of his red hair, athletic build, and easily recognizable characteristics, it is remarkable that no one has seen him.
Bryce Laspisa’s disappearance may never be fully explained, but it appears likely that he is no longer a viable option.
As of this writing, there has been no confirmed sighting of him in more than seven years.
It’s unlikely that he could have kept his identity a secret for long if he’d decided to flee and start over somewhere else.
His fingerprints, dental records, and DNA have all been entered into the national missing person database.
His parents’ hunt for him has never ended, and they remain hopeful that they will learn what happened to their only son.
Although his parents have a Facebook page dedicated to finding their missing kid, they post frequently. We may all learn the truth one day.
Where Is Bryce Laspisa in 2022?
There has not been any new information discovered in the years after he went missing. His family continues to post notices that they are looking for him hoping they may one day learn the truth.