CLINTON, La. (AP) — Fourteen years after a two-year-old boy disappeared from his rural East Feliciana Parish home, investigators and others are still searching for information that could help find Wesley Dale Morgan.
The Advocate reports that retired Baton Rouge police officer Richard Sobers spent Saturday in front of the East Feliciana Parish courthouse in Clinton handing out fliers and bumper stickers saying "Where's Wesley."
Morgan went missing in May 2001. His mother Ruby Renee Havard Freeman told police she had briefly left him playing in the yard when she went to prepare lunch. When she went back outside, she said the boy was gone.
Law enforcement agencies spent days combing the woods by helicopter, horseback and on foot looking for clues, but came up without enough evidence to tie anyone to Morgan's disappearance.
The FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for anyone with information that helps find him.
Sobers started his campaign about three years ago, saying the child's relatives and parish officials haven't done enough to find leads.
"I don't understand why people are not looking for him," he said.
But Sgt. Kevin Garig, a detective with the East Feliciana Parish Sheriff's Office who has worked on the missing person's case since 2008, said the case remains open and the sheriff's office meets regularly with the FBI to talk about the investigation.
"We've never stopped investigating the case. Some months we have more leads than others," Garig said. He added: "It's never been put on a shelf to sit there. We work on this case year-round."
Talmadge Bunch, the East Feliciana Parish sheriff who's been in office since 2000 and lost his re-election bid in October, said he believes Freeman sold the child.
"I know he's alive somewhere," Bunch said.
Rhonda Covington, an East Feliciana Parish public defender, said Freeman and other relatives have cooperated with law enforcement. Covington represented Freeman in an unrelated 2008 charge of attempting to sell another child, a charge eventually dismissed.
Covington said Freeman remains hopeful her son will come home, but she rejected suggestions Freeman was responsible for his disappearance.
"There was a theory that the police had come up with that maybe Ruby had sold the child, but there was never, ever a shred of evidence to that, and there was no reason for her to do that," Covington said.
The family isn't working with Sobers, however, who Covington said has stirred up rumors that upset the family.
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Posted on Mon, December 14, 2015
by The Lafourche Gazette