Mississippi Coast Crime Stoppers is increasing the amount of reward money for tips leading to an arrest in major unsolved crimes along the Coast.
The up to $2,500 in reward money is mostly or unsolved murders or high-profile missing person cases.
For those who have lost victims to violent crimes, such as murder, the increase in reward money is good news.
Sophia Lee, of Hattiesburg, said she’s hoping the increase will prompt tipsters to report the information authorities need to arrest whomever is responsible for murdering her son, Antonyo Robert “Da Kiing” Lee, of McClain. His body was lying on the side of Mississippi 57, about 20 miles from Greene County.
Lee said she’s not like other mothers who often want to dispel talk about their child’s involvement in gangs. She said doesn’t know if her son’s death was gang-related but he was a high-ranking member of the gang, the Dubb Nation, an branch of the nationally-known gang, the Vice Lords.
“That was my child,” Sophia Lee said Thursday. “Somebody murdered him and I’m trying to get justice.”
Antonyo Lee was found shot to death and robbed of his jewelry and cash on Nov. 5, 2017. The murder case is among those where tips could lead to higher rewards.
In another case, authorities are searching for Xavier Lamar Simmons on charges of murder, armed robbery and aggravated assault in the Sept. 30, 2007, killing of Justin Tubbs, in Bay St. Louis.
Crime Stoppers announced the increase in reward money Thursday and reiterated that all tips are confidential, whether they are called in, reported online at mscoastcrimestoppers.com or are sent via text to the crime-fighting organization.
Most recently, Crime Stoppers fielded calls that assisted in the investigation and arrests of four men accused in a Feb. 5 armed home invasion and murder during a Super Bowl party in Moss Point.
Other arrests are expected in that case.
Crime Stoppers is able to offer reward money that is raised at fundraisers and other events.
Here are a few other highlighted cases in which Coast law enforcement officials are searching for suspects:
- Effie Kate Ware, 50: Ware was identified in casino video removing a wallet from someone’s purse and stealing money. The crime occurred in November 2010. Biloxi police are investigating.
- Douglas William Falls, 56: Falls is wanted in a Jan. 23, 2014, armed robbery of a man. Biloxi police are investigating.
- Si Van Tran, no age available: Tran is wanted for stealing someone’s identity to steal money. The Harrison County Sheriff’s Department is investigating.
- Jose Chacon-Posada, no age available: Chacon-Posada is wanted for failure to go to court on federal charges accusing him of smuggling immigrants into South Mississippi. He has been known to work as bus or van driver in Houston, Arkansas and Mexico. U.S. Marshals are investigating.
- Tammy Lynn Dogruogullari, no age available: Dogruogullari is accused in the Dec. 28, 2009, burglary at New Family Life Church in Biloxi. She speaks fluent Spanish is known to use different aliases. Biloxi police are investigating.
The Sun Herald also featured this week cold cases Crime Stoppers is currently featuring for tips in those cases.
To report crimes, call Crime Stoppers at 1-877-787-5898, log on to mscoastcrimestoppers.com and leave a tip or text a tip in.