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Tampa police search for two missing teens in separate cases

TAMPA — Police were seeking help Tuesday night in locating two teenagers who disappeared this week in two separate missing persons cases.

In one, police were looking for a 16-year-old boy who left Saturday to visit a friend in Winter Park, where the family recently lived, but didn't return home.

The boy, William Damon, sent a text message to his mother Monday afternoon saying he was headed back to Tampa, police said, but did not show up.

He was driving a dark blue 2007 Nissan Xterra.

His father, Scott Damon, said the parents had been reaching out to William's friends in his home town to try to find him.

"We called AT&T to try and trace his phone, but it's turned off," the elder Damon said. "He was given cash before he left. He doesn't have a bank card."

He said he doesn't have any reason to believe his son would run away. "It's hard for any high schooler to move, but he has friends here that he likes and he was getting involved with the wrestling team. Of course he missed his old friends, but he texted us at 4:01 p.m. telling us he was leaving" to return.

In the other case, police were looking for a 15-year-old mentally disabled boy who ran off Monday.

Nicholas Hubbard-Wright, last seen wearing a gray T-shirt, red shorts and black Air Jordan sneakers, recently moved here with his family from Alabama.

He disappeared while his family was at St. Lawrence Catholic Church. Police said he had wandered away in the past in Alabama and typically was found at libraries or stores, but is new to this area.

Hubbard-Wright jumped from a parked car and took off running, said his mother, Lessie Donaldson, 35, a nurse.

Call the police if you see him, she warned, and do not approach him.

The boy suffers from attention deficit hyperactive disorder, mild retardation and bipolar disorder. "He can be very violent and confrontational," she said.

The teen is dawn to well-lit places that stock food and electronics. "He loves video games," his mother said.

Donaldson said her son has run off too many times to count and each time was forcefully returned and institutionalized.

"Do not approach him because he's going to run, and when he runs he hides, and when he hides he's not on the streets where he can be found," she said.

Authorities asked people who spot either of the missing teens to call Tampa police or 911.

Tampa police search for two missing teens in separate cases 11/22/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 22, 2011 11:38pm]
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