Crime

He just turned 15, but he’s been missing for months

On 15th birthday, Jabez Spann still missing

The family of Jabez Spann, who has been missing since early September, marked his 15th birthday on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Sarasota.
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The family of Jabez Spann, who has been missing since early September, marked his 15th birthday on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2017, in Sarasota.

This year, there was no party, no celebration. A Sarasota family is still hoping their loved one makes it home.

Instead of spending Wednesday celebrating her son’s 15th birthday, Jabez Spann’s mother spent the day participating in Florida’s Missing Children’s Day, according to Spectrum Bay News 9.

In front of their home, a sign reading “happy birthday” and “bring you home” was hung from the fence by Spann’s aunt, Latohya Jakes, WFLA News Channel 8 reported.

Spann has been missing for more than three months, and though Sarasota police are receiving tips nearly daily, there have been no solid leads, Bay News 9 reported. Posters with his face and a $25,000 reward have been shared on social media and in Sarasota.

“I think it's safe to say that for whatever reason he is missing, it's not a good one,” Sarasota Police Department spokeswoman Genevieve Judge told Bay News 9.

Spann’s grandmother, Lucille Tillery, believes her grandson would be home if he could, and the family is desperate for answers.

“I know my grandson. If he was capable of calling me, or coming home. He would have been here,” she told Bay News 9. “Right now I'm at the point, even if we don’t get him back alive, just tell us where he's at so we can go get him.”

His family believes Spann witnessed a murder shortly before he disappeared, according to WFLA, but police have not confirmed the connection.

Tillery told Bay News 9 her grandson said he didn’t see anything, but she believes “he saw the whole thing.”

“He was just an all around good boy, he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time,” she told ABC Action News.

Anyone with information about Jabez’s whereabouts can contact the Sarasota Police Department at 941-316-1201 or Sarasota Crime Stoppers by calling 941-361-8477, or online at www.sarasotacrimestoppers.com. There is a $25,000 reward for information related to the case.

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