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Published: Monday, February 13, 2017 @ 5:26 PM
For the past 18 years, the disappearance of Erica Baker has been the Miami Valley's biggest mysteries.
"It's a mystery maybe to some people but it's our job to find her and we want to bring her home," said Sgt. Bob Greene, of the Kettering Police Department. "It's about a little girl. a little girl who was taken from her family at the age of 9. It's a tragedy."
Greene, and now cold case detective Vincent Mason, are working what they call an open and active case.
"We're interested in recovering her remains. We don't know if there's enough evidence for a serious charge or not. But it's been 18 years and it's time to bring her home. It's past time to bring her home, " Greene said.
Christian Gabriel served 6 years in prison after he confessed to driving a van that struck Erica near the intersection of Glengarry Drive and Powhattan in Kettering. Both he and his passenger, Jan Franks, had criminal backgrounds so instead of calling for help, Gabriel said he put Erica inside the van and took off. Even after serving his time and getting out of prison in 2011, Gabriel refuses to say what he did with Erica and Jan Franks is deceased.
"He knows exactly where she is," said Sgt. Greene. "So he's the one who needs to come forward and tell us where she's at."
This is why Erica's brother is breaking his 18-year silence and speaking out about the man who holds the key to finding his sister.
"He's a coward. He needs to step up. He wants to pretend like he's a man but he needs to be a man and do the right thing," said Jason Baker.
Baker is one of Erica's three older brothers who want to bring Erica home.
"We want to know where Erica is. We want to know what happened and we want our closure," Baker said.
Erica's mother, Misty Baker, says time is not healing this wound.