Palmetto Police need help to solve a 2014 homicide

Manatee County

A Palmetto woman is desperately begging for the public’s help. Her only son was murdered five years ago, and police say the case is growing cold.

It was 2:45 in the morning on March 22nd, 2014. 

The Hall Nightclub in Palmetto had just closed and police say a fight broke out.

26-year-old Javare Thomas and his friends had nothing to do with it, and they left.

However when they were about a mile away on Haben Boulevard, a dark pickup truck caught up to them and someone shot Thomas in the back of the head.

“We believe based on our investigation and information up until now that this was a case of mistaken identification of the car that Javare was riding in,” said Palmetto Police Chief Scott Tyler.

In the five years since, police have followed leads and identified a person of interest, but they desperately need help from the public to crack this case.

“There’s nothing worse for any detective than to have a case unsolved. We hate it,” said Palmetto Police Detective Joseph Rogers. 

But one person who hates it even more is Javare’s mother Tonya.

“It has been difficult for me as a mom to live to carry on….This was my hero. This was my king, this was my soul,” said Tonya Thomas.

An innocent man was murdered, and someone knows something. 

“I hold my head up with dignity and pride knowing that this is what my son will want me to do to live to fight, not give up hope,” said Thomas.

“We believe in the time since there are people out in the community where maybe people that have knowledge of this case, have been talking about it, we believe that probably there are people that have a guilty conscience about it because who wouldn’t?” said Chief Tyler.

If you have any information call Crimestoppers, you could be eligible for a cash reward. 

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