Nearly 20 years ago, a family was met with a tragic situation. In the year 2004, 16-year-old Amber Cates was ready to celebrate spring break with her friends. Amber was living in Maury County, Tennessee at the time. The teenager had plans to travel for the break and was very excited. On Sunday, April 11, 2004, Amber left her home to embark on her trip.
Sadly, she never made it to her destination.
Amber was picked up at her house that day by her friend James. James arrived in a gold Mazda. The plan for the group was to have a short, 2-day trip. The police began to question James since he seemed to have been the last person to see Amber alive. James, though, claimed that he left Amber with someone else. He says that he left him with their friend Roland. James told the investigators that Amber and Ronald planned to get food at a Waffle House that day.
It took the police a long time to locate Ronald. That’s because he was spending time as an inmate at an Alabama federal prison. Ronald verified James’ story that Amber was with him after being dropped off. He then claimed, however, that he dropped Amber off with another man in Columbia, Tennessee. Ronald says that he has no idea what happened afterward.
When the police looked into Amber’s background, they found that she was living in a foster home. Her half-sister told investigators that Amber was spending a lot of time with a group of people that was bad for her. Her half-sister, Brenda, is her legal guardian.
Progress in this case has been hard to come by. No one has used Amber’s social security number since she’d gone missing in 2004. Her cell phone also had absolutely no activity. Despite the lack of leads, the police are still very determined to figure out where Amber is.
“We want to hear from those folks, and our partners with Maruy County Sheriff’s Office want to hear from them, too. If we can’t bring a loved one home safely, we at least want to bring some peace to that family” a representative for the police said.
If you have any information regarding Amber’s disappearance or whereabouts, you are urged to contact the Maury County Sheriff’s Department at (931) 380–5733.
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