Murder charges to be filed against man in Cassandra Gross disappearance

GREENSBURG, Pa. — A prosecutor in Westmoreland County said murder charges will be filed against Thomas Stanko in the disappearance of Cassandra Gross.

According to our partners at, Assistant District Attorney Pete Flanigan said the investigation into Gross’ apparent death is ongoing, but it is near completion. At a court hearing Friday, Stanko’s lawyer asked a judge to dismiss pending criminal cases filed under Gross’ disappearance in April 2018. He was being held in prison on charges not related to Gross’ case.

Stanko was Gross’ estranged boyfriend at the time she was reported missing in April 2018. Her burned out car was found in a wooded area of Twin Lakes Park in Unity Township several days later.

Investigators repeatedly searched Stanko’s property and a nearby cemetery looking for her. Jailhouse phone calls and writings led police to 17 guns on Stanko’s property and in a storage unit.

In January, a forensic anthropology team comprised of students and staff from Seton Hill University were joined by state police troopers in a search along train tracks in Unity Township. Gross’ body has never been found.