Jennifer Odom's killer remains a mystery

5:29 PM, Jun 19, 2013   |    comments
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Pasco County, Florida -- Jennifer Odom's murder has been that unsolved case that has stumped investigators for 20 years and recently once again.

Related: Investigators end search for murder clues at Lake Jovita

Investigators didn't find the blue pickup truck in Lake Jovita in Pasco County that witnesses believe was driven by Jennifer's abductor.

"Even I say a little prayer the family will someday have peace and find out who did this get closure to it," said former Hernando County Commissioner Tony Mosca. 

He said he prays every time as he drives along Powell Road the spot where 12-year-old Jennifer Odom's body was found 20 years ago in Hernando County.

"It was heartbreaking. It really was. I thought they would find her alive."

Mosca said, even today, many still can't believe a child would be abducted in a rural area.

"Children getting off buses was nothing. So to think some stranger happened to be coming down this road, see Jennifer, and abduct her seems so far fetched," recalled Mosca.

But investigators say that's what happened on Feb. 19, 1993, the day Jennifer disappeared as she walked home from her bus stop along Jim Denney Road in Pasco County.

"I did notice parents keeping children on a shorter leash. That anything could happen," said Mosca.

Twenty years later, Jennifer's parents still live in the same home. Jennifer's room remains almost as she left it and hanging from the lamppost in the front yard, their family names are listed: parents Clark and Renee and sisters Jennifer and Jessica.

Mosca hopes investigators will one day get the break they need that will answer many prayers.

"They [investigators] are just going to prove they [the suspect(s)] are going to get caught and time is on the law enforcement's side. That if they keep pursuing it, they're going to get the results everyone wants -- catch the bad guy."

Even though investigators didn't get the break they were looking for, the search for Jennifer's killer, or killers, will continue. The Hernando County Sheriff's Office has assigned a full time detective to the case but as Jennifer's step-father told 10 News, each new lead turns into an emotional roller coaster ride for the family.

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