It has been nearly eighteen months since a case tied to 3 friends made headlines.
The murder of James Kulstad and the mysterious disappearances of Micah Holsonbake and Baylee Despot left many wondering: What exactly lead to such a complex case?
The mothers of the so-called Bakersfield 3 have their own suspicions about who might know more about the case.
Deemed a kidnapping suspect, Matthew Queen, Despot’s boyfriend at the time of her disappearance, is someone the mothers have doubts about.
The 3 grieving mothers said it’s a painful reminder of their agony, but said they are taking steps in the right direction.
While the charges Matthew Queen faces are not related to the Bakersfield 3, the mothers said they believe the case may unravel details about their children.
“Every day is like the first day she went missing,” Jane Parrent, Baylee Despot’s mother said. “It’s terrible to wonder what happened to her and imagine in your head what happened to her.”
Parrent said not a day goes by when she doesn’t feel the absence of her daughter, Baylee Despot, now missing a year and a half.
The suffering, no different for the mothers of James Kulstad and Micah Holsonbake, men who their mothers believe had some sort of connection to Matthew Queen.
“We know that he spent a significant amount of time with Micah,” Cheryl Holsonbake, Micah’s mother said. “We know that Micah was not fond of him at all, we know that Micah had issues with the situation and had attempted to not be caught up in it.”
“It’s a crowd that you don’t want to be a part of,” Diane Byrne, James Kulstad’s mother said. We’ve been together since the very beginning, each one of us going through something different, my heart aches for them when their hearts ache, I can’t imagine not knowing where your child is.”
On Wednesday, the mothers sat in one one of several hearings for Matthew Queen, but Queen waived his right to the hearing.
“It wasn’t unexpected,” Holsonbake said. “We know he would would attempt to hide or conceal things for the public’s information not wanting people to know information publicly.”
The kidnapping charges were filed last year, after Queen allegedly forced a woman into an orchard at gunpoint, threatening to kill her.
The woman said Queen questioned her about Despot being faithful to him, raising red flags for all 3 mothers. That’s why all 3 mothers were in court Wednesday.
Queen’s arraignment is set for Nov. 15.
Over the last several weeks, 17 News sent dozens of requests to speak to Queen but he’s declined to comment on the case of the Bakersfield 3.