Local

Family hopeful new tip solves 16-year-old mystery of daughter’s disappearance

ATLANTA — The family of a missing southwest Atlanta woman hopes that members of the community will come forward to help close a 16-year-old unsolved kidnapping case.

Channel 2′s Ashli Lincoln spoke with members of the victim’s family who said they received a tip they hope provides some answers.

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Atlanta police were able to find a suspect in this case, but they haven’t been able to locate Artdrunetta Hobbs’ body.

Tonjala Harris said her quest for justice hasn’t stopped after 16 years.

“I just miss my baby,” she said. “I’m going to heaven looking for my baby.”

Harris said her faith was recently expanded after receiving a Facebook message from a man saying he had information about her daughter’s disappearance.

After responding to him, Harris said he said her daughter’s body was buried at Melvin Drive Park in southwest Atlanta.

On Aug. 10, 2006, Atlanta police began investigating after Hobbs was abducted from her home on Butner Road.

“They said they tied her hands up and forced her in the car,” Harris said.

Hobbs’ car was later found burned out and left on Fulton Industrial Highway. Harris said tips eventually led them to Melvin Drive Park.

A search was conducted with more than 100 volunteers, and one of Hobbs’ shoes was found.

Investigators also found skeletal remains that didn’t belong to Hobbs.

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“Melvin Park is real big and wooded. It’s like 42 acres,” Harris said.

Harris said with so many acres, they only scratched the surface of searching the area.

With this new tip comes renewed effort.

“I was feeling helpless, but it gave me a little hope,” Harris said.

This Saturday, she said she’s hoping volunteers will join her in returning to the park.

“I need help to go out there because it’s real wooded,” Harris said. “I need the canine dogs. I need somebody volunteers.”

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Channel 2 reported Atlanta police did identify a suspect in this case. He served prison time for an unrelated case but was never charged in Hobbs’ disappearance.

“I want to give her a proper burial, and I want justice. I want someone to be held accountable for my baby,” Harris said.

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