Update on Missing Person Investigation
Update: Charges are pending against Timothy Ray Jones, Jr., 32, of Lexington, in connection with the disappearance of his five children, ages 1 to 8. See press release.
This press release was originally issued by the Lexington County, South Carolina Sheriff’s Department at 4:00 p.m. The contact for the sheriff’s department is Major John Allard at (803) 785-2415.
Lexington County Sheriff’s Department detectives, in cooperation with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), other local law enforcement agencies in South Carolina, and local and state law enforcement agencies in other states are investigating the disappearance of five children, ages 1 to 8, who were reported missing to the sheriff’s department on Wednesday, September 3. The five children were last seen in Lexington County with their father.
Lexington County Sheriff Lewis McCarty said the children’s father, who has joint custody of the five children, was detained on Saturday, September 6 in another state on charges that are not related to the disappearance of his five children. The five children live at a home near Lexington with their father, who is the children’s primary legal custodian.
Sheriff’s department detectives, SLED agents, and FBI agents, in cooperation with local and state law enforcement agencies in other states, actively are investigating the whereabouts of the five children, McCarty said. Detectives suspect foul play in the children’s disappearances. Detectives are searching for the children outside South Carolina.
The children’s mother, who is divorced from the children’s father, reported the five children missing to the sheriff’s department at 6:11 p.m. on Wednesday, September 3, McCarty said. Deputies entered the five children and their father as missing persons on the National Crime Information Center computer database.
The mother of the five children told sheriff’s department deputies that she had been unable to contact her ex-husband, McCarty said. The mother also told deputies that there had been other occasions when she had been unable to contact her ex-husband. Neighbors told deputies that the children’s father said he was moving with his children from his home near Lexington to another state.
Law enforcement officers in another state detained the children’s father on Saturday night at a public safety checkpoint that the officers were conducting and contacted the sheriff’s department after determining that the father and his five children were listed as missing persons on the National Crime Information Center computer database, McCarty said. The five children were not with their father when officers detained the father.