Alicia Moore was just 16-years-old when her life was violently snatched from her; now her devastated family is searching for answers.
The Greenville, Texas teen was last seen exiting a school bus on November 2nd at 3:25 p.m., according to Greenville Police Chief Dan Busken, about a block from her home. Three days later, her body was discovered by a construction worker 40 miles away in a furniture trunk on the side of a remote stretch of Highway 47.
An Amber Alert was not issued for the girl and anger has been building over the perceived negligence of the police department.
“If somebody is missing that should have been at home, the police need to step up and reach out,” said Alicia’s aunt, Jessica Byrd. “I feel like I’ve been the investigator trying to get the word out.”
During a press conference, Chief Buskin said that Alicia’s disappearance did not meet the criteria for an Amber Alert, and that even now, authorities couldn’t be sure she was abducted.
Her mother, Aretha Moore, is not only devastated by her daughter’s murder, but confused, reports CBS News.
“Why? I don’t know why,” she said at candlelight vigil. “She was quiet, a home-body. Didn’t bother no one.”
Tragically, there were signs of trauma on Alicia’s body and this is not the first time that she was assaulted.
Months before Moore was killed, her mother told police that 49-year-old Terry Dwayne Ramsire abused her daughter, according to police. Ramsire was charged with sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child by sexual contact, according to a city spokesperson. He’s being held in the Hunt County Jail on $70,000 bond, and while Ramsire was locked up at the time of Moore’s disappearance and homicide, police say they are working to determine if a connection exists.
[Editor’s Note: NewsOne’s policy is to not reveal the identify of alleged sexual assault victims, but Moore’s identity was made public before the allegations were reported.]
Another man, Tobias Whetstone, was also questioned in Alicia’s disappearance, and is now in custody on an unrelated charge.
Both men allegedly have alibis, but police have not commented yet on a potential link.
Though police may have doubts that Alicia was abducted, 14-year-old Khania Bailey-Hatley says she believes it because it nearly happened to her:
I think he was hiding in the bushes or in a car,” Khania told News 8. She said the man followed her from the bus stop in the 4200 block of Stuart Street on January 17. He yelled at her to come to him, and then tried grabbing her, steps away from her front yard.
“He was like, ‘come here,'” Khania recalled. “He was behind me and I kept walking and he grabbed my shirt… he had the back of my shirt.”
She managed to fight off the assailant and ran to a friend’s house to call police. Khania told officers she had seen the man before, watching her and other kids getting off the bus.
“He was obviously prowling on her, waiting on her,” her mother, Pametria Bailey said. “He knew what time she got off that bus every day. He was waiting.”
Bailey said officers took a report and never made an arrest.
Khania describes her would-be kidnapper as a “white male who was tall, skinny, in his 30s, with facial hair and wearing a blue jacket, hat, glasses and jeans.”
*Anyone with information in the homicide case is asked to contact the Greenville Police Department at 903-457-2900.
To contribute to the Alicia Moore Reward Fund or the Alicia Moore Memorial Fund can send checks to 9070 Westridge Blvd, McKinney, TX, 75070. Questions about either fund should be directed to 972-346-3000.