‘We just want both kids back safe.’ Parents of missing Oregon teens with ties to Orange County speak to News 12
The parents of two missing Oregon teens with ties to Orange County are speaking with News 12 as the nationwide search for the young couple intensifies.
Jonathan Stockle and Penny Lyles have been missing from Svenson, Oregon, for more than a week.
“I want my daughter back. That’s all I want,” says Penny’s father, Ryan Lyles. “There were never any threats.”
Ryan Lyles says the young couple disappeared Nov. 14 from school after they found out he planned to confront them about alleged drug use.
“I find out that Penny has been sneaking out and doing all this stuff. I texted Penny to come straight home after school because they sometimes would go drive around and get lunch,” says Ryan Lyles.
Ryan Lyles says the teens – who both live with him in Oregon – were afraid they’d be separated from each other and called police to the school before they took off.
“All Penny would say is that I’m scared, but that I’m scared to lose Jonathan, not scared that my dad is going to hurt me,” says Ryan Lyles.
Ryan Lyles showed News 12 text conversations between him and both teens that day.
Stockle, 18, says in one text, “We love one another and are really scared.” Ryan Lyles responds, “So much you tried to lie and get me put in jail. F*ck you. You’re a man. You have my kid. I’m looking for you. I don’t care anymore.”
In another text, Penny Lyles says to her dad, “I’m scared. I love him and don’t want him to have to leave me.” Ryan Lyles texts back, “I’m not gonna hurt him, but if this continues I will get you back home by any means possible. Your mom is crying. I’m crying.”
Stockle's mom, who’s originally from Goshen and still has family in Orange County, and his dad say they believe the kids ran away because they’re afraid of Ryan Lyles, claiming there’s a history of abuse. They told News 12 they feel their son is in danger and say the last time they talked to him, last Tuesday, he was running from people and was scared.
Wayne Stockle, Jonathan’s father, says, “He was running in the woods, out of breath and said, ‘Dad, don’t call me. They’re going to find me and kill me.’”
“The last thing I heard from my son was, ‘Mommy, I’m scared’ and the phone cut out,” Jessica Stockle, Jonathan’s mom, says.
The Stockles also gave News 12 text messages between themselves and Jonathan. One text, allegedly from Jonathan, says, “He said he was gonna shoot me.” Another says, “He has a bunch of guns upstairs. We have pictures and videos of when he hit [his children].”
Police in Oregon haven’t said the teens are in danger or that they were allegedly abused. Ryan Lyles vehemently denies any allegations of abuse and says he’s a good father who loves his daughter.
“There was never any abuse. According to the police, their investigation was concluded and there was no evidence of abuse, and they sent Penny home with her parents,” said Ryan Lyles. “When they came to tell us that, the school counselor told Penny, ‘You go run out the back door if you want,’ and opened the door and let her run out.”
The teens attended Knappa High School in Astoria, Oregon. Jonathan Stockle is a junior, according to Ryan Lyles, and Penny Lyles is a sophomore. News 12 reached out to the school and district for comment and has not heard back.
The Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office is handling the case and issued a missing person’s flyer on Sunday and updated it after News 12's report on the teens’ disappearances on Monday, adding that Jonathan Stockle, who is legally considered an adult, is not in trouble.
Ryan Lyles is well-known in Oregon for his role in violent protests at the state’s Capitol in 2020. He pleaded guilty in that case in 2022 and was sentenced to probation, according to several published reports.
Ryan Lyles addressed the incident in News 12’s interview with him.
“We live in a very liberal community, and I am a very conservative man that stands up for his rights and when they call me a criminal and a felon, it’s because I went into the state Capitol and fought with the police to keep our rights as citizens,” says Ryan Lyles. “I’m not a criminal. I’m a person that stands up for their rights and I’m a conservative man in a jungle of filth.”
The Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office has not returned News 12's repeated calls for information.
Their missing persons flyer describes Jonathan Stockle as 5 feet, 11 inches, 155 pounds with blond hair and blue eyes. Penny Lyles is described as 5 feet, 5 inches, 120 pounds with blond hair and blue eyes. They say Jonathan Stockle is believed to be driving a gray colored 1998 Toyota Rav4 with an Oregon plate number 547HRL.
Anyone with information related to the case is asked to contact the Clatsop Sheriff’s Office at 503-325-2061.
In the meantime, Jonathan Stockle’s parents are holding a rally for their safe return Wednesday night where they live in Thayer, Missouri – where the teens met after the Lyles temporarily moved there - and have started a hashtag for the teens #weloveyoujonathanandpenny. A social media flyer for the event has the information for the National Runaway Hotline, asking them to contact the organization anonymously and confidentially for help if they see the post at www.1800runaway.org.
“We just want both kids back as safe as possible,” Jessica Stockles says.
“Somebody is helping those kids because they’re not mastermind criminals,” says Ryan Lyles. “Just come home, Penny. You know everything is going to be OK. I love you, we all love you. Just come home.”