Authorities searching area near cemetery for missing woman

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By: WCTV Eyewitness News
July 11, 2018

Deanna Shirey

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- The search continues Wednesday for a missing Thomasville woman, Deanna Shirey.

Shirey, 70, has been missing for over a week.

Officials with the Thomasville Police Department, the Thomas County Sheriff's Office, the Georgia State Patrol and other agencies are currently searching in an area behind the Peaceful Rest Cemetery, located just off of North Pine Tree Boulevard in Thomasville.

Teams are searching a thick wooded area and a swamp behind the cemetery. A GSP helicopter is helping search from the sky, while law enforcement officers are searching on foot and on ATVs.

Authorities are not releasing details on why that specific area is being searched. However, officials say that since the Georgia Bureau of Investigation asked for help from the public yesterday regarding the case, numerous tips have come in that they're following up on.

Investigators have named a person of interest in Shirey's disappearance, 47-year-old Robert Carter, who is in custody for charges related to a separate case.


By: Noelani Mathews | WCTV Eyewitness News
July 10, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- The Georgia Bureau of Investigations has released an update in the search for Deanna Shirey, and they're now asking the community of Thomas County for help.

It's now been a week since the official search for Shirey began. Agents are police are calling on residents, businesses and even visitors by requesting any information, sightings or surveillance between a very specific time of last week.

Officials are wanting information beginning Sunday, July 1 around 7 p.m. through Tuesday, July 3 around 8 a.m.

GBI, Thomasville Police and the Thomas County Sheriff's Office are asking people to search their property, including bodies of water and even trail or animal cameras.

"Go out to your residence, your backyard, your barn, your shed, or whatever the case may be and look yourself. If you find anything suspicious definitely give us a call," said Major Wade Glover with the Thomasville Police Department. "That'll go a long way with covering these areas that need to be searched."

Teams of law enforcement are still out searching every day, and finished clearing all the wooded area around Shirey's home this week.

They say they're targeting specific areas, especially places person of interest Robert Carter is familiar with, like in Ochlocknee, where he was raised.

Authorities are using helicopters, drones and cadaver dogs, and are on foot and ATV's searching. Police say they're having to search a large area, and are looking for all the help they can get.

There is still a $5,000 reward for Shirey's return home.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
July 6, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- The Thomasville Police Department has said they have recovered the white Toyota Tacoma that belongs to a person of interest in the disappearance of Deanna Shirey.

TPD took to Facebook to say the vehicle had been found, but not person of interest Robert Carter.

Officials say it is unknown at this time if he's in another vehicle.

The full Facebook update can be seen here.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
July 6, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- Thomasville Police have identified a "person of interest" in the disappearance of 70-year-old Deanna Shirey.

Police say they are looking for 47-year-old Robert Carter in connection to a separate incident, but add that they "strongly believe" he is connected to Shirey's case. Police say there are several warrants out for his arrest.

Police shared a photo of Carter from a previous arrest, but emphasized that he remains at large.


Police are currently on the scene at Carter's residence at 428 Colton Avenue, less than three miles from Shirey's home in Thomasville. Crime scene tape has been put up in the area.


Thomasville Police say they are attempting to locate Carter and believe he may be driving a stolen 2007 white Toyota Tacoma with Georgia tag "AJN1924". Police say Carter is accused in an aggravated assault in Thomasville on Thursday night and was last seen driving the stolen vehicle around 5 a.m. Friday.

We've also learned that Carter is a registered sex offender, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. He was convicted of aggravated child molestation back in 2001.

Anyone with information on Carter's whereabouts is asked to call police immediately.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
July 6, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- The Thomasville Police Department says a large search party of law enforcement officers is assembling to continue the search on Friday for missing local woman, 70-year-old Deanna Shirey.

The group is set to canvas a larger area around Shirey's home on Glenwood Drive in Thomasville this morning.

Family members have not heard from Shirey since Sunday. Shirey's car was then found abandoned in Tallahassee on Tuesday.

Shirey is 5’05” tall, and has brown hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information on Shirey's whereabouts is asked to call Thomasville Police at (229) 226-2101, or the Tallahassee Police Department at (850) 891-4200.


By: Aubrey Brown | WCTV Eyewitness News
Updated - July 5, 2018

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) -- Authorities in North Florida and South Georgia continue to search for a missing Thomasville woman, but officials say there are no new leads.

Thursday, Thomasville police were back at the home of 70-year-old Deanna Shirey, this time with a team of canines and plans to search a wider area around the house.

Shirey was reported missing Tuesday after officers with the Thomasville Police Department were called to her home for a welfare check.

Officers say no one answered the door at Shirey's home on Glenwood Drive Monday, but her car was in the driveway. When officers returned Tuesday morning, her vehicle was gone.

The car was found Tuesday in Tallahassee's Frenchtown neighborhood. Her personal belongings were still inside.

The Tallahassee Police Department roped off a section of Georgia Street near Carter Howell Strong Park for nearly three hours as they collected evidence. Several K-9 teams also searched the area.

Officials say Shirey has no known relatives in the Tallahassee area.

Shirey is 5’05” tall, and has brown hair and brown eyes. Family members say they last heard from her on Sunday.

She is retired but has a part-time position at the Thomasville Publix. She was scheduled to be at work Wednesday.

A Publix spokesman says the company is just hopeful that she'll be found unharmed.

Law enforcement continues to process evidence in Thomasville and Tallahassee.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Tallahassee Police Department at (850) 891-4200.


By: Alex Crescenti | WCTV Eyewitness News
July 3, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Authorities in Thomasville and Tallahassee are at a standstill and have no idea where 70-year-old Deanna Shirey could be at this time.

"A lot of police came over there, they had the whole area roped off," said Leroy Johnson, describing the scene by Carter Howell Strong Park Tuesday morning.

When he woke up, police asked him if he knew how long Deanna Shirey's red Honda CRV had been outside the house.

"From 10 to 11 that's when we woke up and that's when we seen all the officers and police and stuff," said Johnson.

Other neighbors don't recall seeing the vehicle the night before.

"We told the police we go to bed about 10 so we don't know," said Flora Johnson.

In Thomasville, detectives continued their search for the missing woman at the home where police were called for a welfare check days before, but there were still no answers.

"You have an individual whose car is located at a different place so there's something there that we need answers to and until we investigate it we won't have it," said Capt. Maurice Holmes of the Thomasville Police Department.

Some say Shirey's disappearance is a reminder you have to keep your eyes open at all times.

"You can't let nothing pass you by without saying, 'well what's going on' or something," said Rosetta Mckinnon.

For Leroy, he says this type of story is disheartening and he hopes she is found safe.

"It makes you feel sad when someone, a family member's missing, and you hope for the best. Hope everything is alright with them," said Johnson.

Tallahassee and Thomasville Police are urging anyone with any information regarding Shirey's whereabouts to give them a call.


By: Lanetra Bennett I WCTV Eyewitness News
July 3, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Authorities in Thomasville and Tallahassee are searching for a missing woman, 70-year-old Deanna Shirey.

Shirey lives in Thomasville.

Police say her car was found abandoned in Tallahassee. The dark red Honda SUV was parked along Georgia Street near Carter-Howell-Strong Park.

People who live in the area say all of a sudden they saw a lot of police officers. They soon realized the investigators' focus was on the small SUV.

Investigators with the Tallahassee Police Department were on the scene for several hours Tuesday. A police dog was also on scene searching the SUV, some yards and the area around park's pond.

The detectives went through the SUV. They placed items from the vehicle into brown evidence bags.

Leroy Johnson lives nearby. He says he and his wife first noticed the SUV around 11:00 Tuesday morning.

"That's when we seen all the officers and police and everybody was out there where the car was. You hope for the best. You hope everything is alright," he said.

Johnson says he and his wife went to bed around 9:30 p.m. last night. They don't recall seeing the SUV outside then. He says they didn't see anyone driving the SUV or anything fishy about it.

After authorities processed the scene, a tow truck hauled the SUV off around 2:15 p.m. Tuesday afternoon and the scene was cleared.

Shirey is 5’05” tall, and has brown hair and brown eyes. Family members say they last heard from her on Sunday.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
July 3, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Authorities in Thomasville and Tallahassee are searching for a missing woman, 70-year-old Deanna Shirey.

Shirey is 5’05” tall, and has brown hair and brown eyes. Family members say they last heard from her on Sunday.

The Thomasville Police Department says Shirey's car was found Tuesday morning in Tallahassee's Frenchtown neighborhood. Her personal belongings were still inside.

Tallahassee Police roped off a section of Georgia Street near Carter Howell Strong Park for nearly three hours as they collected evidence and took photographs of the burgundy-colored Honda. It had a Georgia tag on the back and a custom tag on the front that said "Ms. D" with red roses.

Several K-9 teams also scoured the area. One K-9 team searched the yard of what appears to be an abandoned house across the street and another K-9 team circled the holding pond nearby.

Shirey resides in Thomasville and officials say she has no known relatives in the Tallahassee area.


Thomasville Police say officers stopped by Shirey's Glenwood Drive residence on Monday evening for a welfare check and no one answered the door, but her car was in the driveway. Then, when they returned Tuesday morning, her vehicle was gone, but the home's windows and doors were locked and secured.

Crime scene tape has been put up around the home and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has responded to the scene.


Anyone with information is asked to call the Tallahassee Police Department at (850) 891-4200.



 
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