Although African Americans make up just 13 percent of the U.S. population, we account for 33 percent of the missing in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s database. Cases involving African Americans also tend to receive less media coverage than missing Whites, with missing men of color getting even less attention.
NewsOne has partnered with the Black and Missing Foundation and TV One to focus on the crisis of missing African Americans.
To be a part of the solution, NewsOne will profile a missing person weekly and provide tips about how to keep your loved ones safe and what to do if someone goes missing, while TV One‘s newest show, “Find Our Missing,” hosted by award-winning actress S. Epatha Merkerson, tells these stories in visual form.
Case Type: Endangered
Date of Birth: Jan. 1, 1974
Missing Date: May 28, 2013
Age Now: 39
Missing City: Jacksonville
Missing State: Florida
Hair Color: Black
Hair Length: Short
Eye Color: Brown
Wear Glasses or Contacts: No
Location Last Seen: Near the the Avenues Mall about 2:30 p.m.
Circumstances of Disappearance: Authorities say Williams had gotten in to an argument with his wife, Vanessa, at the Avenues Mall. She walked away to end the arguing, and when she returned to her husband, he was gone.
“I was so mad with him, so I said ‘Wait here. I’m not…I don’t want to walk with you and argue anymore,” Vanessa told ABC News.
Afterward, Vanessa reported him missing.
Police say that Williams used his ATM card at a convenience store near the mall later that evening. Williams may have also been spotted at an apartment complex the next day.
This behavior from Williams was unusual said his wife and authorities.
“He’s a great dad, a great husband, [he’s] very responsible,” Vanessa Williams said.
“At this time he is AWOL from the United States Navy, which is unusual since his rank is a chief,” Lt. Robert Schoonover of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.
Police don’t suspect foul play and the AWOL designation has stuck, which has upset Williams’ family.
“I don’t understand why they look at him and think he deserted the Navy,” said Williams’ wife.
“My husband is a proud sailor, with no blemish on his record,” she said.
Family friend Karen Rice agreed.
“He could not have disappeared, in his uniform, in broad daylight,” Rice told FCN. “It’s very frustrating that the community is not coming out to help this family. Chief Williams has served his country for 15 years in Jacksonville,”Karen Rice, a friend of the Williams’ told FCN.
The Navy has said they are working to find out what happened to Williams.
His family, meanwhile, just wants him home.
“I just wish he would come home. Things just aren’t the same without him,” Williams’ daughter, Journi said.
Last Seen Wearing: Blue camouflage uniform.
Identifying Marks or Characteristics: Unknown.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Kevin Williams should contact the Black and Missing Foundation’s confidential Tip Line.