On Monday, Thomas’ family held a news conference at the district attorney’s office to demand answers from police.
Penny had always relied on her son arriving home before midnight; when he missed, it caused concern and she texted him but got no reply back.
Early Life and Education
Missing Thomas was a high school student who went missing during a camping trip in March 2017; this led to a nationwide manhunt and eventually she was located safe; later her captor, teacher Cummins was apprehended for holding onto her hostage.
Penny reported to Dateline that when her son did not return by midnight as planned, she became concerned. When texting him she did not receive any reply.
Hemphill County Sheriff’s Department investigators discovered Thomas’ car in an isolated section of Hemphill, but his backpack, laptop and phone were missing. Penny says they were found near where their sewage ponds are situated: this “is nowhere Thomas would go”. She and her husband searched for hours before finally calling the sheriff’s office where they were informed that it is standard practice to not present suspicious deaths to a grand jury.
Thomas was an outstanding performer over her twelve seasons with the Connecticut Sun, missing only seven total games due to overseas commitments, rest or family obligations. She now ranks fifth all-time for career games played (358) while also leading active players.
Thomas was an essential player on the Buffalo Bills “K-Gun” offense which featured no-huddle shotgun formations and earned five Pro Bowl selections and first team All Pro nods twice, helping the Bills reach four consecutive Super Bowl appearances (which they unfortunately lost all four times).
He holds all-time rushing honors on the team and ranks fourth all-time for yards from scrimmage in franchise history. Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he also held positions with Jacksonville Jaguars and Miami Dolphins before retiring.
Achievement and Honors
Thomas was a tunneller or Sapper during World War I and received medals for his service. It is said he saved thousands of allied lives as one of the premier members of Small Heath Rifles.
In Series 4, Thomas attends the funeral of Digbeth Kid and Polly Shelby are threatened by Sabini’s men. Later that night, Thomas meets Inspector Campbell at The Catholic Church who informs him that the coppers have caused his gang to lose money.
Two years later, Grace Burgess returns to Thomas’s home. At first she appears sarcastic about it, but they spend the night together and it becomes evident that they still share feelings for one another.
Thomas Riha was an introverted, neat and precise individual who took great care in memorizing Russian grammar. An accomplished musician as well, Thomas’ disappearance bears all the hallmarks of an early Cold War spy thriller.
His family became alarmed when he failed to return by his regular curfew time, leaving his car, phone and wallet behind at home.
Penny immediately contacted local police and searched the natural area known as “the jungle,” searching with help from neighbors as well. Unfortunately, Thomas could not be located; his case received wide media attention, even airing twice on Unsolved Mysteries and also inspiring Macabre Club podcast team’s first episode on Thomas’s disappearance available via Apple Podcasts.
Thomas made an impactful transition after retiring from basketball to reality television, appearing on various shows but most notably The Real Housewives of Atlanta.
His role on the show garnered him notoriety and wealth estimated to exceed $100 Million.
Justice Clarence Thomas earned $1 Million annually as an associate justice of the Supreme Court and earns additional income by teaching law at George Washington University School of Law and through book advances. Additionally, he earns dividend and interest income from investments like Vanguard money market funds, Wells Fargo CDs and universal life policies.
Ginni Thomas has established a lobbying group known as Liberty Central to mobilize conservative activists; however, this creates an apparent conflict of interest with her duties as justice of the Supreme Court.