Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

As missing pregnant teen's due date approaches, family calls for more tips

ST. PETERSBURG — Leah Martin thought she might be a grandmother by now.

Her youngest, Morgan, came to her months ago and said she was pregnant. Martin wasn't thrilled, but told the 17-year-old the family would figure it out.

But Morgan went missing July 25 and hasn't been seen or heard from since.

Police say the case is "active," but caution that the likelihood the teen encountered foul play is high. A $1,000 reward for information remains unclaimed. Her mother hopes to start a second fund to supplement that money this week.

Morgan's 18th birthday was Dec. 1. Her due date is Friday.

Before she disappeared, she told her mother she planned to name her baby, a girl, Ja'Leah. It would be Martin's first grandchild.

"I still have hope," Martin, 44, said. "It's not a lot, but I do. … I really just hope she's safe."

Morgan was last seen leaving her family's home, 2808 17th Ave. S. She was on her cellphone and told her family she was meeting someone outside.

She never came back.

Morgan is 5 feet 2, 175 pounds and of mixed race. She has black hair, brown eyes and has a scar on her chin and the left side of her lip. She was last seen wearing a white tank top, a pink jacket with fur around the hood, gray bottoms and fuzzy pink slippers.

Police have interviewed friends, family and the father of the teen's unborn baby. No suspects have been named.

The fact that Morgan, known for calling her mother several times a day, has not had any communication with anyone in her life is not a good sign, police said.

"The circumstances of this are very ominous and would tend to support the conjecture that she may have met with some foul play," said police spokesman Mike Puetz. "But we haven't found any crime scene. We haven't found a body."

Martin said she knows investigators are working hard. She said they've told her they still get tips.

Still, she said, it's hard to cope.

Last month, family and friends gathered at her home, ate cake and wrote messages on 18 star-shaped balloons released into the sky. The family also has started a Facebook page, "Hope for Morgan Martin."

A few weeks ago, Martin discovered an old card her daughter gave her. "It's the little things that are worse than the big things," Martin said. "It can take my whole day away. … You kind of feel like you're lost."

Kameel Stanley can be reached at kstanley@tampabay.com.

Police seek help

Anyone with information about the disappearance of Morgan Martin is asked to call police at (727) 893-7780 or Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-873-8477.

As missing pregnant teen's due date approaches, family calls for more tips 01/02/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 2, 2013 10:46pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tampa Bay Super Bowls: A brief history and some predictions for 2021

    Bucs

    At last, Tampa will host a Super Bowl again. It used to be that the Cigar City would host one a decade, but by the time February 2021 rolls around, it will have been 12 years since the epic showdown between the Steelers and Cardinals. Because it has been awhile, let's revisit those past Super Bowls while also peering …

    Santonio Holmes hauls in the game-winning touchdown in the Steelers' 27-23 Super Bowl XLIII victory over the Cardinals in 2009, the last time Tampa hosted a Super Bowl. [JAMES BORCHUCK | Times]
  2. Rays bats go silent in second straight loss to Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Sure, Alex Cobb was to blame for the Rays' 4-0 loss on Tuesday.

    Derek Norris strikes out with the bases loaded as the Rays blow a golden opportunity in the seventh inning.
  3. Analysis: Manchester attack was exactly what many had long feared

    World

    LONDON — For Britain's security agencies, London always seemed like the likely target. For years, the capital of 8 million with hundreds of thousands of weekly tourists and dozens of transit hubs had prepared for and feared a major terror attack.

  4. Dade City man dies after crashing into county bus, troopers say

    Public Safety

    ZEPHYRHILLS — A 38-year-old man died Tuesday after colliding into the rear of a county bus on U.S. 301, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

  5. Suspicious device at Pinellas Park home was a spent artillery round, police say

    Public Safety

    PINELLAS PARK — Bomb squad investigators determined that a "suspicious device" found at a Pinellas Park home Tuesday afternoon was a spent artillery round, police said.