A former Harlem Globetrotter who was making the 1,100-mile trek from California to Seattle to be with his longtime girlfriend has been missing for more than a week, and police are turning to the public for help, news station KTLA reports.
Rico Omarr Harris, 37, called his mother Oct. 10 to tell her that he was passing through Sacramento, Calif., and he was going to grab a bite to eat and take a nap. An hour later, he called his girlfriend and left a voice mail. That was the last time anyone heard from Harris.
Harris’ black Nissan was found three days later 60 miles northwest of Sacramento in a remote park off state Route 16, according to KTLA. The 6-foot-9, 280-pound former Globetrotter was nowhere to be found. After running the plates, police confirmed that the car belonged to Harris. A team searched the area near the car and found Harris’ cellphone and a backpack with jumper cables. Deputies reportedly told the family that Harris’ car battery had died.
On Monday Harris’ mother, Margaret Fernandez, held a press conference to ask the public for help. “I miss my son,” a visibly upset Fernandez told reporters. “I’m very, very sad.”
According to police, Harris set out on his journey from Alhambra, Calif., to Seattle around 1 a.m. on Oct. 10. Harris’ family told the news station that Harris was in the process of moving to be with his longtime girlfriend, Jennifer Song, and that he was looking forward to starting a new job in sales.
“He’s a very loving, charismatic … a gentle giant,” Song told the news station during a Skype interview. She added that they were looking forward to getting married and starting a family.
Harris’ relatives told the news station that he suffers from bipolar disorder.
“I feel confident that we’re going to find him, that he’s going to come through, wherever he is,” Harris’ stepfather, Charles Taylor, told CBS Los Angeles. “I have to believe that. I have that kind of faith that we’re going to find him.”
Anyone with information on Harris’ whereabouts is being asked to call 530-668-5280.
Read more at KTLA and CBS Los Angeles.