Once again I have found myself behind with my planned blogging schedule, but unfortunately, I’ve been ill on several occasions since the new year. Anywhoo I’m back in action today.
This post was supposed to have gone live a few Monday’s ago but it never got published. I’ve pretty much planned out all of my future Missing Monday posts and so finding a slot for it was proving to be really difficult.
So I’ve abandoned the “Monday” part of this series for this particular case and instead I’ve decided that it should get published today.
Today’s case is that of Zebb Quinn who disappeared under suspicious circumstances in 2000, over 17 years ago.
Who is Zebb Quinn?
Born on the 12th of May 1981, Zebb Wayne Quinn was 18 years old when he disappeared in 2000.
At the time he disappeared he was employed at Walmart and was also a student at Ashville-Buncombe Technical Community College. During his educational career, Quinn was said to have been involved with the ROTC and was achieving good grades through his hard work. It has been reported that Quinn had an unnamed learning disability.
Quinn was very close to his family and so his disappearance was immediately suspicious and his parents have said that it was completely out of character. Essential items that Quinn would have needed were not taken and this has led to instant speculation about the possibility of foul play – more on this later.
Quinn is described as being 5ft9 – 5ft10 tall, weighing around 165 pounds. He is Caucasian with blue eyes and brown hair. At the time he disappeared he was wearing a white t-shirt with a logo on it and either Tommy Hilfiger Jeans or khaki pants.
On the 2nd of January 2000, Zebb Quin had left work with plans to meet his friend Robert “Jason” Owens. They had arranged to look at a Mitsubishi Eclipse that Quinn was interested in purchasing. At 9 pm he left his job at Walmart and met Owens in the parking lot. They set off in their separate cars – Quinn was driving a light blue Mazda Protégée and Owen was driving a Ford pickup truck.
At around 9.15pm they stopped at Eblen Citgo gas station on Hendersonville Road and are caught purchasing soft drinks on CCTV. They are then seen leaving with both cars pulling onto the road heading to Long Shoals road.
At this point, the rest of what happened that evening becomes speculation and is only based upon the testimony of Robert Jason Owens.
At some time before 9.30pm Owens claims that Quinn flashed his headlights indicating that they should pull over, at this time they were near the TC Roberson High School on Long Shoals Road. According to Owen’s testimony, Quinn exits his vehicle and informs Owen that he has received a page and that he needs to head off to make a phone call.
It is alleged that 10 minutes later Quinn returns to where Owens is waiting for him and that at this time he rear-ended Owens car. Quinn then proceeds to apologise to Owens and tells him that he can no longer go see the car. He drives off and Owens says this is the last that he ever saw of Quinn.
After this point, Quinn is never seen again,
*Roert Jason Owens mugshot from a different unrelated case (more on this later)
In the afternoon of the 3rd of January, Quinn’s mother files the missing person report.
On the 3rd of January Owens is interviewed by police as he was known to have been with Quinn the previous evening. In the interview, Quinn tells police his story and that he last saw Quinn after the “mysterious” page. He then told police that earlier that morning he had been treated for a head injury and broken ribs claiming that he was injured in an unrelated car accident, which he claims happened during the early hours near the Waffle House on long Shoals Road.
The next day Walmart receive a call from a person claiming to be Zebb Quinn, stating that he will not be in work that day as he is ill. This call was traced to the Volvo plant where Owens worked and he admitted making the call, claiming that Quinn had asked him to make the call as a favour.
Two weeks after Quinn went missing, his car was found at the Little Pigs Barbecue Restaurant on McDowell Street. While the restaurant had no direct connection to the case, the hospital opposite the restaurant did. A number of Quinn’s family, including his mother, worked at this hospital and his mother is convinced that the car was planted in the hopes that she might find it.
While in some cases the car can prove to be a key lead for the officers investigating the case, in this instance the car only added to the mystery.
The car contained no evidence of Quinn but there were some mysterious things left on and inside the car. There was a plastic hotel key, a number of empty bottles, several hairs and a jacket – none of which belonged to Quinn. Yet more mysteriously a three-month-old labrador brown puppy was also inside the vehicle, the dog had not belonged to Quinn. The driver’s seat had also been moved forward, a position which was too short for Quinn. On the front of the car, someone had drawn a pair of lips and two exclamation points in lipstick.
It has been speculating that this was done in order to confuse and mislead police in relation to Quinn’s whereabouts. It is unknown who had been using the car and who had left the car at that location, however, police are confident that it was not Quinn himself.
What do we know/ The investigation
We only have one eye-witness testimony from that evening and it’s safe to say that police were immediately suspicious of Owens and his story. In his first interview with police Owen’s had told them about injuries he had recently been treated for and claimed that these were caused due to a car accident he was involved in the hours after Quinn supposedly left him. Yet police could find no report of such an accident ever taking place and his injuries also seemed inconsistent.
After his initial statement to the police, Owens stopped cooperating.
It was possible for police to corroborate at least one part of Owens story and that is that Quinn did receive a page that evening. It was a delayed message and it is said to have come from an aunt of Quinn’s. The aunt stated that she had not sent him a message but later told police that she believed her home may have bee broken into during that time frame. She said that nothing had been taken but that things had been moved around.
It was a delayed message and it is said to have come from an aunt of Quinn’s and was sent from her home phone. Yet at the time the page was sent she was actually out with a woman called Misty Taylor, Misty’s boyfriend and mother were also with them.The aunt stated that she had not sent him a message but later told police that she believed her home may have bee broken into during that time frame. She said that nothing had been taken but that things had been moved around.
At the time Quinn went missing there were some complicated matters going on in his private life and it was reported that he might have been in a relationship with a woman who had an abusive partner. Quinn apparently confided in co-workers about this and even told one individual that he believed he was in danger. This woman was later named as Misty Talor, the lady that Quinn’s aunt had been with when the mysterious page had been sent.
The police also believe that it was possible and even likely, that more than one person was involved in this case. They do suspect that there was foul play and are investigating the case as a homicide.
In March 2015 Owens was charged with the murder of a couple and their unborn baby. While searching his property in connection with the murder inquiry, police found “hard-fragments”, fabric and pieces of leather buried under a layer of soil and concrete. They believe that it’s possible that Quinn’s remains were buried on the property.
To this day police still consider Owens to be a person of interest in the case and have never been able to rule him out
What do I think?
This case seems to be one of the cruelest that I’ve ever written about because I’m convinced that Quinn did meet foul play. While I do suspect that Owens is somehow involved in this case, I believe beyond any doubt that he at least knows more than he’s let on to authorities.
We can only hope that know he has been charged with another murder, he will beleive that he has nothing to lose by coming forward and finally telling the truth about what happened to Quinn.
Where can I find out more about this case?