Suspect's phone number on missing teen fliers

Published: Sep. 2, 2012 at 8:35 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 9, 2013 at 3:13 PM EDT
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Flier includes Grant's phone number
Flier includes Grant's phone number
Gabbiee Swainson
Gabbiee Swainson

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Fliers posted in the search for a missing teen included the phone number of the man accused of kidnapping her.

15-year-old Gabbiee Swainson has been missing for more than two weeks.  Two days after her disappearance, Swainson's mother distributed fliers with her daughter's photo.

One of the phone numbers listed on the flier belongs to Freddie Grant, who was charged last week with kidnapping in Gabbiee's disappearance.

A vigil was held Sunday night at the Elgin Town Hall for people to pray for Swainson.

"We don't have to see anything that she is alive, but we have to hope for that," said Jeff Wylie.

Black ribbons are a reminder of Swainson's love for bow ties. Sunday they offered prayers that Gabbiee will be found soon.

Organizer Patsy Thompson was just out with the family searching Saturday.

"The wooded areas, railroad tracks, up here in Pontiac, the landscaping, that's where he got his supplies, went there and looked," said Thompson.

It's something that's touched a nerve in this small town and with so many mothers who didn't know the family but who can relate to their suffering.

"I have a 17-year-old daughter," said one mother. "And I just wanted to be out here and support her and let her know that we care about her."

As candles were lit and balloons released, family members encouraged the community to continue to have faith that Gabbie will be found alive.

" Just keep having faith because we really believe that Gabbie's alive, we really do," said Wylie.  "This isn't like, 'Okay this is blind faith.' We actually believe that she is alive and actually well, so that's what I want everybody else to believe."

One week ago investigators arrested Freddie Grant, but there's still no sign of missing 15-year- old Gabrielle Swainson.

Tuesday investigators added a warrant for kidnapping of Swainson.  It kicked off a week of intensive searches, but still no sign of the teen.

The search for Gabbiee Swainson will move forward, into the coming week. Intensive searches done last week at Freddie Grant's Elgin home and the nearby junkyard where duct tape containing Gabbiee's blood and hair were found may no longer be the focus.

"We've searched that, the best we can," said Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. "We've completely searched that area."

As of Friday, investigators were still waiting on DNA forensic tests on items recovered from Grant's car.

"We haven't gotten those results back yet," said Lott.

The Sheriff's pleas for someone to come forward who might have hired Grant to do yard work or for anyone who may have seen Gabbiee in pajamas similar to these have gone unanswered.

"We haven't had any additional information," Lott said.

A judge could call a hearing this week on the defense's request for a gag order against Sheriff Leon Lott. The defense claims comments from the Sheriff are disturbing for Grant's case. It's not changed Lott's feelings that Grant holds the key to finding Gabbiee.

"Just tell someone where she's at," said Lott. "I don't care how you get that information to us just so we can know where she's at and bring some closure to her parents."

The Sheriff said Friday the community support has been great. This week they'll continue to try and piece together a timeline for Grant's whereabouts after Gabbiee disappeared.

There are still several hours they can't account for, and investigators hope someone may have seen Grant or his 1992 blue Ford Escort. As forensic evidence is completed, investigators hope it can fill in the rest of the puzzle leading them to Swainson.

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