Leads generated in Gwinnett County 6-year-old cold case - CBS46 News

Search for longtime missing Gwinnett man called off

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Gwinnett County sheriff's deputies ended their search of a rural area where they were looking for the body of 18-year-old Justin Gaines. He disappeared on Nov. 2, 2007 from Wild Bill's Night Club in Duluth.

"We are suspending this operation today," said Shannon Valkodov with the sheriff's office. "I'm not able to provide any information on anything that was found or not found at the site."

Following up on leads in the case, investigators began digging with a front-end loader in a rural part of Dacula. The location is very remote and on private property.

"Certainly, this is a case that we'd like to see reach a conclusion," said Volkadov. "It always requires a lot of hard work and a lot of patience."

Gaines' mother, Erika Wilson, told CBS46 she is disappointed the search turned up nothing.

"I still have hope and faith in sheriff's deputies and my private investigator that we will get closure one day," said Wilson.

Police said Gaines got a ride to Wild Bill's Night Club in Duluth. A surveillance camera captured Gaines entering the club shortly after 11:30 p.m. Witnesses reported seeing Gaines drink alcohol. He was seen by another camera leaving Wild Bill's at 1:30 a.m.

At 2 a.m., Gaines called a friend looking for a ride. At 2:30 a.m., Gaines reportedly told a parking attendant he found a ride.

Who was that ride? Did Gaines get into a car with someone he didn't know?

Police said they've heard all sorts of rumors and haven't been able to determine if Gaines was killed, disappeared on his own or fell victim to a terrible accident.

Gaines' family said they pray that someone will reveal the location of Gaines' body so they can give him a proper burial.

Gwinnett County Police said their Cold Case Unit will continue working on the Gaines investigation along with others that have not been solved.

"We never give up," said Cpl. Edwin Ritter. "We don't stop. At a certain point when all leads are exhausted, there's going to be a resting point until more come in." 

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