“We got the work done, the car ran and this other guy had a cigarette and Matt had a cigarette,” Ron Albrecht said. “Matt walked off between the two garages there, and that was the last time I seen him.”
After the group failed to find him, Ron Albrecht drove his son's friends home.
Albrecht had a cell phone through a good friend's account, Wayne Stenzel of Mapleton. The last time that phone was used was around 2:30 p.m. Friday. There were also no bank purchases after he left the home.
Police later received a credible report from friends who saw Albrecht in the 200 block of Washington Court in Mankato at about 4 p.m. the same day. That location is in the Washington Park neighborhood, roughly one mile from where Albrecht was last seen by his father. It is not known where he was headed or why he didn't come back.
Albrecht was supposed to take the Explorer to pick up his 5-year-old daughter, Zoey for a planned visitation, but he never showed up.
"I thought he was going to take the car and go get her,” [Ron Albrecht] said. “He loves his daughter very dearly and he always looked forward to seeing her.” (Mankato Free Press, 1/21/10).
Albrecht also has a younger daughter, Ashlyn, with another woman, who hadn't seen him either.
Friends say that Albrecht was a happy, fun-loving guy who liked to go out and have fun, grill out with his family, or take his nieces and nephews fishing. He had also been enrolled in computer classes at South Central College recently.
Albrecht lived in Mapleton, MN with his maternal grandmother, Sandra Danberry, who said her grandson always kept in touch or told her where he was going.
"I'm more afraid something has happened to him somewhere," Danberry told the Mankato Free Press in January. "It’s unlike Matt to not contact his friends and his family and, especially his oldest daughter." (Mankato Free Press, 1/21/10).
The Search for Matt Albrecht
dragon tattoo (Mankato Free Press)
According to CharleyProject.org, in August 2010, four months after Albrecht's disappearance, a warrant for his arrest was issued on felony drug charges. Albrecht allegedly sold $300 of Oxycontin to an informant in December 2009. A similiar charge was also filed against the mother of one of Albrecht's children two weeks before Albrecht disappeared. Police stated that he would be unlikely to receive significant jail or prison time from the charge, yet his family said they were fearful about his safety.
In May 2011, various news agencies reported that a femur bone found in a subdivision of southeast Mankato in early December was positively linked to Matt Albrecht. The confirmation was made through a DNA test conducted by the MN Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.
The bone was found by a yellow lab who brought it home to its owner in the Sleepy Hollow neighborhood east of Highway 22 and south of Highway 83. After the bone was found, investigators were able to do a search, but heavy snow fell before they were able to find anything.
The search resumed Friday, May 6. During the search, a pair of tennis shoes were found and were identified by Matthew's family through a photograph as belonging to Matthew Albrecht. A thorough and immediate search of the area then led to the discovery of additional bones, a cell phone, and partial clothing remnants.
In May 2011, one year after Matt's disappearance, Angela Wobschall, Albrecht’s mother, expressed her frustration about not having answers. “There’s been a year of interviews and investigation,” she said. “I don’t know that there will ever be a resolution to it. Nobody is coming forward with anything." She added that while she was trying to focus "more on the memories that we have of Matt, not what happened to him," she remains convinced that because of where her son's body was found, someone knows what happened to him or was involved. (Mankato Free Press, 5/27/11).
If you have any information about Matt Albrecht, please call the Mankato Police Department, 507-387-8770.
Facts of Interest
Last seen: 4/16/10, 200 block of Washington Court in Mankato, MN
Physical Description: 5'9", 200 pounds, blonde hair, green eyes, distinctive tattoo of dragon on right side of neck.
Last wearing: black t-shirt, blue jeans, sneakers.
Investigating Agency: Mankato Police Department, 507-387-8770.
First published: 2/25/11. Updated: 5/12/11, 06/23/11.