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 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.
Omar Jabree Gibson
Case Type: Endangered
Date of Birth: April 23, 1986
Missing Date: July 25, 2012
Age Now: 28
Missing City: Gainesville
Missing State: Florida
Case Number: 02-12-015234
Hair Color: Black
Hair Length: Short
Eye Color: Black
Wear Glasses or Contacts: No
Location Last Seen: Palms of Brook Valley Apartments, 1101 NW 39th Avenue, Gainesville, Fla.
Circumstances of Disappearance: Gibson’s blue 2003 Honda Accord was recovered in the apartment complex on July 27, 2012. The car was found with the keys on the floor and the doors unlocked. Two years later, police have no clues and Gibson’s friends and family are despondent. That raw emotion was on display on a Facebook page dedicated to finding Gibson:
Truly saddened that another year has passed and no one seems to care…Is Omar really not important to anyone? Why haven’t we come together and stayed together in an effort to find him? Why haven’t we found answers for his children? Why does his grandmother and mother still spend sleepless nights wondering where he is and what happened? Omar we have failed you…and for that I am truly SORRY
Police, though, have said they have not given up on the case.
“We are still following up leads. One of the detectives this week went out on a lead. They are still trickling in, and we are following through on each one of them,” Sgt. Tscharna Senn told the Gainesville Sun on the first anniversary of Gibson’s disappearance. “He’s classified as a missing person, and we are hoping that he is still alive. Obviously, somebody knows something they are not telling us. We’re just trying to figure out who that person is.”
According to the Sun, Gibson may have been involved in a drug deal gone wrong. The paper reports that a man arrested on a drug conspiracy charge was the last person to see Gibson alive. According to the police report, Gibson and the man who last saw him alive were going to buy three pounds of cocaine.
Gibson was allegedly supposed to buy the drugs and then meet up with the man to hand them off to avoid being robbed. Gibson’s partner claims the missing man never showed up to the transfer location.
Gibson’s friends and family initially felt the police were not taking the case seriously, a charge police denied. Regardless of the alleged circumstances surrounding Gibson’s disappearance, he still has children, friends, and family who are hoping to find him alive or at least know what happened to him.
“There is still hope. You see so many other stories where people have been missing for decades, and they pop back up,” family friend Chanae Jackson-Baker told the Sun on the anniversary of Gibson’s disappearance. “The family doesn’t know what to do. His mom, who lives in Orlando, is constantly in tears. He has children, and we have to tell them that we don’t know what happened to their dad.”
Last Seen Wearing: Tank top, long jean shorts, and Jordan slippers.
Identifying Marks or Characteristics: He has a slim build.
Anyone with information regarding the circumstances of the disappearance of Omar Jabree Gibson may contact Gainesville Police’s anonymous tip line at (352) 393-7700 or contact the Black and Missing Foundation’s confidential Tip Line.