First off, why are you returning a ReferenceID that you already know? If you know it, there is little point in querying a DB to find it ... By all means, return a COUNT or similar, but fetching the value you are filtering by is somewhat silly.
Secondly, if it returns no columns that means there are no values that match in the table - you could be querying the wrong table, the wrong DB, or you could be looking for the wrong ID value. You will not get an "empty column" back from that query: if you are seeing empty columns, I'd look at the "raw data" the query returns and at what you are doign with it subsequent to the SQL call. Without your DB and the data it contains, we can't help you there - so start with SSMS and paste your query into a new query window.
If you get no rows, then change it to:
SELECT ReferenceID FROM returnShipmentPos WHERE ReferenceID LIKE '%R-100235729-200%'
And see if that changes the results. (Equality requires the data to match exactly; LIKE will match if the string is anywhere in the data.
If that doesn't help, remove the WHERE clause entirely, and see exactly what is returned.
Sorry - we can't do any of that for you!