Real Name: Yeda Sharon Rosenthal
Nicknames: Dede Rosenthal
Location: Cherry Hill, New Jersey
Date: February 25, 1991
Date of Birth: November 4, 1958
Height: 5' 8"
Weight: 150-160 pounds
Marital Status: Single
Details: Thirty-two-year-old therapist Dede Rosenthal was last seen on Friday, February 22, 1991, when she left work at the Elwyn Institute. She was reported missing on February 25 after she did not report to work. When investigators arrived at her apartment, they found that the front door was unlocked and the Sunday paper was untouched. Inside, there were no signs of robbery or a struggle. Police learned that due to her over-spending, she was going to be evicted from her apartment. The possibility emerged that she left on her own accord.
Her family did not believe this, however. Her purse had been left behind, which contained her keys, credit cards, and identification cards. Her car was found in the parking lot of the apartment complex. Her briefcase, with all of her client records, was inside. Also, she had left her cat by itself on the balcony, which was uncharacteristic of her.
This led to the possibility that she may have been abducted and murdered, sometime between Friday night and Sunday morning. This seemed likely after a neighbor reported hearing a scream and a thud come from her room at 3:45 am on Sunday. Five hours later, the same neighbor heard the sound of Dede's sliding glass door open and close.
On March 1, 1991, bartender Gloria Brown believed that she saw Dede at the biker bar where she worked. The woman whom she believed was Dede claimed that she did not have any money, but Gloria decided to give her some soda for free. She claimed that her name was "Laurie" and that she was trying to get to Florida. Gloria felt that something was not right with the woman.
A few days later, she saw Dede's missing persons flier and realized that she may have been the woman that she had seen. However, the woman known as "Laurie" had vanished before police could question her. A biker claimed to have dropped her off at a liquor store near a main highway.
A few days later, Dede's aunt received a phone call from someone claiming to be Dede. The caller kept saying "Mama" and then said that she was okay. She believed that the voice was Dede's. Five weeks later, her brother received a tip that she was in Fr. Lauderdale, Florida. However, the tipster did not give any more information before hanging up.
A year later, on September 25, 1992, the woman calling herself "Laurie" showed up at the bar again. She had dyed her hair blonde and claimed that she was in Florida for awhile. Gloria was again working and decided to talk to the woman. She told her that if she was Dede, she needed to contact her family. The woman left and has not been seen since.
Dede has never been found and it was never determined if the woman seen at the bar was her.
Suspects: At first, police suspected that Dede may have vanished voluntarily. She was having money problems and was going to be evicted from her apartment. Her family members said that they had given her some money to help pay her bills and that she did not make much money at her job. However, they did not believe that she would leave of her own accord.
Police began to suspect foul play when they found that she had left all of her belongings behind. They also learned about her neighbor hearing a scream coming from her apartment around the time she vanished.
However, the sightings at the biker bar led some to believe that Dede may still be alive. Bikers were also suspected in her disappearance due to the sightings at the bar.
Extra Notes: This case first aired on the April 28, 1993 episode. Dede's case was also profiled on On the Case with Paula Zahn.
Results: Unresolved. In 1995, Dede's maintenance man Charles Reddish was arrested and charged with the hatchet murder of his girlfriend, Rebecca Wertz, and rape of her fourteen-year-old daughter. After being arrested, he confessed to investigators that he had also killed Dede. He claimed that he had broken into her apartment, planning to steal from her. When she awoke, he beat her and smothered her with a pillow so that she would not identify him. He then stole $80 from her purse and left.
A few days later, he noticed that newspapers were stacking up outside of Dede's apartment. Fearing that her body would be found, he returned with a shopping cart, wrapped her body in the bedspread, and placed it in the cart. He then took the body and placed it in the trunk of his girlfriend's car. He dumped her body in a remote area off Route 130 in Salem County. Sadly, her body has never been recovered; however, her family has declared her dead.
In March of 1997, he was charged with Dede's murder. Initially, he agreed to plead guilty to manslaughter in Dede's death and lead police to her body. However, he backed out on this deal and went on trial in 2001. At trial, he claimed that Dede was still alive and that he made up his confessions. The jury didn't believe him and he was found guilty of Dede's murder. He was given a sixty-year sentence plus two life terms for the 1995 murder of his girlfriend and rape of her daughter. In 2002, his sentence was converted to a death sentence, which he is still serving. However, this sentence was overturned by the New Jersey Supreme Court and commuted to eighty years. In 2007, New Jersey abolished the death penalty.
Dede's mother Dorothy passed away in 2016 at the age of ninety-seven.
- Dede Rosenthal on NamUs
- 'Police think she's alive...it doesn't fit'
- Man's murder confession is admissible, judge says
- Killer gets week to disclose of victim's location
- Admitted Burlco killer won't find body
- N.J. wants 'Crazy Eddie' executed
- Killer sentenced to die in '91 Cherry Hill slaying
- Man gets new trial in 1991 killing
- Cherry Hill murder to be featured on Investigation Discovery's 'On the Case with Paula Zahn'
- New Jersey v. Charles Reddish
- Dede Rosenthal on Bonnie's Blog of Crime
- Charles Reddish Inmate profile
- Dorothy Rosenthal Obituary