Search for missing teen ends nearly one year after she disappeared
By Rob Starkey
Fri, 09 Aug 2013 21:40:14 GMT — RICHLAND COUNTY (WACH) -- On August 18th of last year 15 year old Gabbiee Swainson went missing. Her mother, Elvia said she last saw her daughter that Saturday before leaving for work. Two days later, Sheriff Leon Lott released a statement saying the information they found was not consistent with a normal runaway case. "We still want to believe she's alive, she's alive in my mind and my heart," said Lott on August 30th 2012. Since then hundreds of law enforcement officers and the community worked around the clock to locate the missing teen. One of the men searching for Gabbiee was Freddie Grant an acquaintance of Gabbiee's mother. Grant was later arrested in the disappearance of the Ridge View cheerleader. "The sickest part of this to me that makes me sick to my stomach is that watching that he was part of the search, how he was with Gabbiee's family and how he got out with the family, how he walked handed out flyers and knowing all the while he was the one responsible for taking her," said Lott on August 30th 2012. "I met this man and he looked me in my face knowing what he had done knowing the circumstances and you're still there, I feel as though I was looking in the eyes of Satan himself," said Swainsonâ??s aunt Zoraida Turnipseed. In September of last year investigators said Grant had a key to the Swainsons house when the 15 year old disappeared. Lott said Gabbiee's mother gave Grant a key to the home while he was doing floor work at the house. "He holds the key he's the one, that can stop those tears in Gabbiee's mothers eyes and the pain in her heart," said Lott on August 30th 2012. While the man accused of kidnapping Gabbiee from her home sat in jail on federal weapon charges, Sheriff Lott says his department was building a good case against him. Forsenic results putting Swainson and Grants DNA together on a roll of duck tape deputies found in Grant's home. "Scientists tell me it's not a situation where one had been there some time and then another was put on it, they were both put there at the same time," Lott said on November 2, 2012. Elvia Swainson never gave up hope and did everything possible to bring her child home. Even reaching out to the man accused of taking her daughter. "I have written letters and I am still waiting to get a response of whether or not I can come and talk to him and have a face to face of whether or not I can get some answers", said Swainson on November 2, 2012. Grant remains in jail tonight; he'll be in a court room next week facing charges in the death of Gabbiee Swainson.
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