Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Murder suspect's 18-year-old girlfriend missing

Police are searching for Jonicia McNeal, 18.

Police are searching for Jonicia McNeal, 18.

ST. PETERSBURG — Gloria McNeal didn't like her daughter's new boyfriend from the start.

"He was not good enough for my daughter," McNeal said. "This is a street person, a thug, if you will. A drug dealer-type person."

Now McNeal fears her 18-year-old daughter may be on the lam with him. Emanuel Levar McCray, 22, is wanted on a murder charge in connection with a March 28 shooting outside a St. Petersburg motel.

McNeal says she hasn't seen or heard from her daughter, Jonicia McNeal, since Easter. More worrisome, she says, is that Jonicia hasn't updated her MySpace page on the Internet since March 27.

"I'm very, very worried," McNeal, 40, said. "He just committed a homicide and she saw it and now nobody can find either one of them."

Jonicia is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 120 pounds. She has short black hair and a tattoo saying either "Emanuel" or "Manuel" on one of her arms.

McNeal said she isn't sure how her daughter met McCray but that she fell hard for him. She even talked about marrying him.

Police are investigating Jonicia's disappearance.

"We believe Jonicia was a witness to the homicide and we would like to interview her," police spokesman Bill Proffitt said.

Police say witnesses saw McCray and Jason McDonald, 26, arguing in the parking lot of a motel at 275 34th St. S right before the March 28 shooting. McDonald had been staying with someone at the motel, police said.

Police say drugs may have been involved, though other factors may have played a role as well. McCray has a criminal record that includes arrests on firearms and drug-related charges, such as cocaine possession.

"If anybody's seen her, please call the authorities," McNeal said.

Abhi Raghunathan can be reached
or (727) 893-8472.

. fast facts

You can help

Police ask anyone with information to call (727) 893-7780.

Murder suspect's 18-year-old girlfriend missing 04/07/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 8, 2008 9:28am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning among early suitors for defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman said he planned to explore free agency for potential needs, which include bolstering his blue line and adding a wing or two.

  2. Senate leaders try to appease members as support for health bill slips


    WASHINGTON — Senate Republican leaders scrambled Sunday to rally support for their health care bill, even as opposition continued to build outside Congress and two Republican senators questioned whether the bill would be approved this week.

    Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill on Thursday, is one of the five Republican senators who announced they cannot support the health care bill as drafted.
  3. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of June 26-July 2.


    Vans Warped Tour: The festival returns Saturday to St. Petersburg's Vinoy Park, featuring shock-metal icons Gwar, hardcore punks Sick Of It All, ska band Save Ferris and indie-pop group Never Shout Never ($39.50-$49.50). vanswarpedtour. …

    Crowd for the Motionless in White band at the 2014 Vans Warped Tour at Vinoy Park, Friday, July 25, 2014.  CHERIE DIEZ   |   Times
  4. Airbag maker Takata bankruptcy filing expected in Japan, U.S.


    DETROIT — Drowning in a sea of lawsuits and recall costs, Japanese airbag maker Takata Corp. is expected to seek bankruptcy protection in Tokyo and the United States today.

  5. AP: Rick Scott to name Jimmy Patronis CFO on Monday


    From the AP's Gary Fineout:

    Florida Gov. Rick Scott is turning to a long-time political ally and former north Florida legislator to take over one of the top elected jobs in state government. 

    Then state Rep. Jimmy Patronis, R-Panama City Beach, left, and Gov. Rick Scott, tour downtown Panama City, Fla. on Tuesday, April 19, 2011. Scott will name Patronis CFO on Monday.