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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Man sold wife’s items at yard sale

Lorrie Timmins, of Post Falls, talked Wednesday about the items that she now owns that belonged to her former neighbor Roxann Tolson, including the missing woman's makeup and ceramic figurines. William Tolson told police his wife sent him to run some errands Aug. 14 and she was gone when he returned.  
 (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Taryn Brodwater Staff writer

Lorrie Timmins has most of Roxann Tolson’s makeup mixed in with her own, and she used the missing woman’s manicure set to do her nails Wednesday morning.

Timmins has Tolson’s frying pans and teapot in her kitchen, her curling iron in her bathroom and the woman’s ceramic knickknacks on display in her living room.

It struck her as odd when William Tolson began selling and giving away his wife’s belongings last August, but she really became concerned in January when she saw news reports that Roxann Tolson, 46, had suspiciously disappeared.

What’s especially puzzling to Timmins is why her former neighbor would leave and not take her makeup and other personal items.

“You’re telling me this girl went without her makeup? Uh uh,” Timmins said Wednesday. “She looked like a woman that spends a lot of time on her face and her hair, and I have all of it.”

Post Falls police arrested 50-year-old William Tolson and his son, Lawrence Tolson, 23, on Monday for allegedly filling the missing woman’s prescriptions for their own use. Though neither man has been charged in connection with Roxann Tolson’s disappearance, police said they consider her husband and son suspects in the case.

Both men – each held on $20,000 bail – have turned down requests for interviews.

Police fear Roxann Tolson may be the victim of foul play. She has not accessed any of her bank accounts, refilled any of her medications or used her credit cards since she disappeared.

Post Falls Police Lt. Greg McLean said Tuesday those facts have authorities concerned that something may have happened to Tolson.

He said police arrested the men on the drug charges because William Tolson was being uncooperative.

According to police reports, William Tolson has provided detectives with conflicting information. Though he initially said his wife was wearing jeans when he last saw her, he then told police that she was wearing pajamas.

McLean said there were also concerns about the fact that Roxann Tolson wasn’t reported missing until months after her husband reportedly saw her last.

William Tolson told police his wife left him Aug. 14.

Timmins said she’s certain that Tolson was getting rid of his wife’s belongings at least two weeks before that date.

She said she remembers it clearly because she was married Aug. 6, and William Tolson held a yard sale a week or so before the wedding.

“I said, ‘Why are you selling all that stuff?’ ” Timmins said. “He told me, ‘I woke up in the morning and she was gone.’ “

Timmins said she thought it was peculiar that Tolson was getting rid of his wife’s makeup and even her eyeglasses. She wound up with a jewelry box that still had a picture of Tolson’s son inside.

According to police reports, William Tolson told Detective Brenda Smith that his wife sent him to run some errands on Aug. 14 and that she was gone when he returned. He said she took clothes, hair products and makeup with her.

Lawrence Tolson told Smith that his mother didn’t take any of her belongings with her, though. He said his dad had called him in mid-August and said there had been “some changes on the home front” and asked him to move in with him.

When Lawrence Tolson moved in to the room that had been his mother’s, he said the room was full of clothing, makeup, jewelry and photographs.

Since Tolson went missing, her car has been sold and is now registered to a California man, according to police reports.

Smith said in the report that Roxann Tolson was the only person listed on the title, “so if she was missing at the time of the sale, her signature must have been forged.”

A taxi driver told police that he recognized Tolson after seeing her picture on the news and recalled giving her a ride to the Spokane airport in mid-August.

He said she had a swollen eye and bruised wrists and said she “wanted to get away from her husband.”