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.
Case Type: Endangered
Date of Birth: January 5, 1976
Missing Date: February 3, 2006
Age Now: 38
Missing City: Tallahassee
Missing State: Florida
Case Number: 063913
Hair Color: Black
Hair Length: Medium
Eye Color: Brown
Wear Glasses or Contacts: No
Location Last Seen: Grimsley-Gilmore was last seen at approximately 12 a.m. at her residence in the 200 block of Loraine Ct. in Tallahassee. Her co-workers at her part-time job at a Publix supermarket last saw her when she was leaving work.
Fellow employees at Grimsley-Gilmore’s other job with the Florida Department of Health called police when she failed to show up for work. Family members describe Grimsley-Gilmore as meticulously organized and unlikely to wander off without informing anyone.
Police say that nothing was amiss at Grimsley-Gilmore’s home and even her purse was found. Her supermarket uniform was laid out on the bed so police know she made it home.
Grimsley-Gilmore had split up with her husband of five years just after finding out that she was pregnant. Friends say she was experiencing some financial turbulence and was concerned about her rising property taxes, according to Dateline NBC.
But her family says it would be unlikely for Grimsley-Gilmore to just disappear because of the stress she was facing.
“No way. No way in the world,” Grimsley-Gilmore’s father Carl McLawrence told Dateline when asked if his daughter would just leave.
Police have also interviewed Grimsley-Gilmore’s estranged husband James Gilmore who strongly denies any wrongdoing.
“I want everybody to know and understand how much I love and miss Ali,” he told the newsmagazine. “Anybody who knows me—anybody who’s known me for all of a couple of weeks would know that I am not the kind of person that would render harm to any living soul whatsoever.”
Police say Gilmore has been completely cooperative, taking a polygraph-like voice stress test which he passed.
“He voluntarily did that, and there was no deception on his part in that,” said a police officer investigating the case.
Eight years later, there have been no developments in the cold case but Grimsley-Gilmore’s family has not given up partially because she was so excited about the birth of her new child. Grimsley-Gilmore and her husband had started marriage counseling and she had plans to attend college. They have maintained a website to update the public about the case.
“I don’t wish this on anyone’s family, no one’s family and I just wish that whoever knows something that the Lord will put something on their heart to do the right thing so our family can have closure with this tragedy that we’ve been going through,” Grimsley-Gilmore’s sister Attallah McLawrence told WTXL.
Circumstances of Disappearance: Unknown. Ms. Gilmore was four months pregnant at the time of her disappearance.
Last Seen Wearing: Unknown.
Identifying Marks or Characteristics: Pierced ears, tattoo of the name “Ali” on right side of chest, birthmark on abdomen, four months pregnant at time of disappearance.
Anyone with information regarding the circumstances of Ali Grimsley-Gilmore’s disappearance or her whereabouts may contact Tallahassee Police at (850) 891-4200, Big Bend Crime Stoppers at (850) 574-8477 or the Black and Missing Foundation’s confidential Tip Line.