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Bones found in Plant City belong to man, 20, missing since April 2009

TAMPA — Robin Harris called police as soon as she heard that human bones were discovered this week in Plant City.

Since her son disappeared in April, Harris called authorities anytime bones or a body surfaced.

Police said Ryan J. Darkins Davis, then 20, and a friend, Carl Walters, 21, disappeared from Walters' Tampa home on April 5.

Walters was found murdered in the woods in Plant City. His brother, Derrick E. Cullins, who lived with Walters, was charged with the crime. Authorities say Cullins stabbed his brother 18 times then dumped the body.

Tampa police have not revealed a motive.

After Harris called Tampa police Detective Sal Augeri, the detective's partner went to the scene. They were already suspicious because Plant City police said the bones appeared to belong to a black man in his 20s, a description that fit Davis.

The body was indeed his, said Tampa police spokeswoman Laura McElroy, who said he was identified by dental records.

She said Cullins is a suspect, but no additional charges have been filed. He remains in the Orient Road Jail without bond, charged with second-degree murder in connection with Walters' death.

"We're looking at Derrick E. Cullins as possibly being involved in Ryan's death, but we're not ready to file further charges," McElroy said.

After Walters' body was found in April, police presumed Davis, of Tampa, was dead, but they never found a body. In May, they searched a Lithia landfill, where they thought his body might have been dumped, but they didn't find him.

On Wednesday, Augeri called Harris at work. He left a message saying they needed to talk.

That's when she knew.

"I'm glad it's over now," she said from her house Thursday, where friends gathered to comfort her.

She has met Cullins. When she and some friends were looking for Davis, they visited Cullins' home to see if he could tell them where Davis was. She believes he murdered her son, and she plans to attend his trial.

"Regardless of what the world does to him, God will do better," she said.

Bones found in Plant City belong to man, 20, missing since April 2009 02/04/10 [Last modified: Friday, February 5, 2010 12:02am]
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