Halloween murder mystery goes back 15 years

Remains recently identified as missing father

TAMPA - The skeletal remains were found in shallow water near the Howard Frankland Bridge in Tampa.  It was nine months after Michael Allan went missing on Halloween, 1997.

It then took 14 more years before the FBI used DNA to come up with a positive match.  The body was Allan's and investigators say the 44-year-old father of two was murdered.

For Pasco Sheriff's Detective Lisa Schoneman, this is one of 69 cold cases she's working on.  She continues to try and find answers for Allan's family.

"I had been speaking to his mother, Nanette, over the years and she's always held out hope and she's always called.  Michael has two kids that always wanted to know what happened to him."

Michael Allan was last seen leaving work at a Brooksville Dodge dealership on October 31, 1997.  He was headed to Tampa to meet his ex-wife, and take his son trick-or-treating.

Allan never made it.

Nearly a month later, his Dodge Daytona was found in a Tarpon Springs parking lot.

But it wasn't until recent months that authorities were able to officially begin a murder investigation.

"Very sad circumstances. And to go 15 years before we can launch in earnest, that just adds to that," said Sgt. Bill Todd with the Tampa Police Department.

Allan's two sons now live in Atlanta.  His mother is in poor health and could not attend Wednesday's press conference at the FDLE Tampa office.  She told me by phone that she hopes to get closure in this case before she passes away.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-863-TIPS.

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