Forty-year-old Sidney Cranston Jr., got on his motorcycle the morning of June 16 to meet a buyer at a vacant property in Kingman.
Later that day, he was scheduled for an important meeting with the Kingman City Council regarding the sewer hookup on the house he was selling. It was an appointment Sidney never would never make.
Sometime between the two meetings, Sidney mysteriously vanished. And the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office and Kingman Police Department are investigating the disappearance as a potential homicide.
Since the second day of the search, Chris Cranston has feared his brother was dead.
“I think Sid was killed. I think he was murdered,” says Chris. “Sid didn’t have the kind of lifestyle where he would disappear for a month… I don’t want to accept that he is dead, but I believe that he is.”
Sidney bought and sold houses, holding the deed to nearly 50 properties across northwestern Arizona. Most of the rundown houses he purchased at tax sales and later renovated and either flipped for a profit or rented.
The day before he went missing, one of Sidney’s properties was burglarized. Checking out the home, he found the carpeting rolled up on the floor and the water heater missing.
Sidney stayed at the home overnight to guard it in case the burglars returned. At 11 the following morning, he spoke with his father.
Hours later, at 4 p.m., he missed the council meeting.
Police have been looking for him since.
“Foul play is suspected,” says Jennifer Sochocki, Kingman PD spokeswoman. “We don’t have a lot of information.
“It’s not on the back-burner for us. We truly want to find this guy and bring him home,” she says. "[Or] bring closure to his family."
At the time of his disappearance, Sidney was in love and planned to marry a psychologist he’d met in southern Mexico and settle with her in Arizona.
But the couple were twice declined a marriage visa. Chris says her brother’s fiancé has been very cooperative in the investigation.
In the six months Chris has been searching for his brother, however, he’s heard some negative sentiments surrounding Sid’s business dealings.
“He was a giving, kind guy. He was not the most socially adept man. He came across to some people as shrewd in some situations,” Chris says. “There seems to be an underlining subversive opinion about my brother that just isn’t true.”
People involved with the case had made claims that Sidney participated in shady real estate practices, which Chris says is unfounded. Supporters of the family say Sidney was a reputable businessman.
“It’s frustrating and hurtful,” Chris says. “It hurts my feelings because he’s not here to defend himself.”
The Cranston family has spent months scouring the Kingman area and have hired a private investigator to try to find Sidney. Additionally, they created a GoFundMe account to help pay for the investigation, which has raised more than $8,000.
Christmas was particularly painful for the Cranston family.
“The hardest thing about the holiday was calling my heartbroken dad and talking with him,” he says. “My brother wasn’t here for this Christmas and is never going to get to enjoy another Christmas.”
If you know anything about Cranston's disappearance, contact the Kingman Police Department at 928-753-1911 or Silent Witness at 928-753-1234. Silent Witness and the Cranston family have offered cash rewards for information.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.