NewsSarasota, Manatee County


3 years since Jabez Spann's death and still no arrests have been made

Posted at 6:53 PM, Sep 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-05 10:31:33-04

SARASOTA, Fla. — Friday marks three years since Sarasota teen Jabez Spann went missing.

His remains were found on the side of a road more than a year later, and still, no arrests have been made.

"Every day that goes on that nobody is arrested, the harder it gets," said LaTohya Jakes, Jabez’s aunt.


It’s been 1,095 of those hard days that the family of Jabez Spann has faced.

"A lot of pain, a lot of pain," said Jakes.

The 14-year-old went missing after a Labor Day barbecue near his Sarasota home on September 4, 2017.

His remains were found 18 months later on the side of a Manatee County road.

"Nobody has got away. They may think they have, but they have not got away from taking the life of our baby," said Jakes.

It’s still unclear what led up to his death.

Investigators say Jabez may have witnessed a murder before his disappearance.

"It takes a certain kind of monster to kill a child anyways, and then the silent code. This is a child, that’s a whole different ballpark, there ain't no snitching rules in that," said Jakes.

The Sarasota Police Department once again is urging anyone with information to come forward. A $50,000 reward remains in place for tips leading to an arrest.

The family says they're appreciative of how Sarasota PD investigators have handled the case.

"They have taken this case as if it’s their own child. They’ve been there for us more than the community has," said Jakes.

Jakes says her family’s faith and determination to find who did this is what has gotten them through.

"You’ve got to ask God to help you have the strength to continue every day," said Jakes.

The family believes members of the community know something.

If you have information that may help solve this case, call SRQCrimeStopper at 941-366-TIPS. A $50,000 reward remains for information leading to an arrest.