Vigil Held for Unsolved Teen's Death

Phylicia Barnes' killer remains at large

By Kelvin Robinson
|  Thursday, Dec 29, 2011  |  Updated 1:46 AM EDT
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Vigil Held for Unsolved Teen's Death

NBCWashington.com

Phylicia Barnes

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Family, friends and police gathered in Baltimore Wednesday night to remember a teenager from North Carolina whose murder remains a mystery.

Phylicia Barnes, 16, disappeared one year ago while visiting family in Baltimore. Her family and friends raised more than $35,000 in reward money to solve the case. But several months later, workers at the Conowingo Dam discovered Barnes's body in the Susquehanna River.

"It was 365 days ago that we were calling and crying, and couldn't understand where Phylicia was, and we still don't know what happened," said Russell Barnes, Phylicia's father, at the vigil.

"We believe we will see justice for Phylicia and we hope and pray it will come soon."

Maryland State Police spokesman Greg Shipley echoed the sentiment from Barnes. Shipley said investigators had made "positive" progress in the case, but he declined to go into any detail.

"Some cases take longer than others. We emphasize that no one has given up on this case and everyone working on this case is hoping for a positive conclusion and has every intent to bring the person or persons responsible for the death of Phylicia Barnes to justice," Shipley said.

Shipley said investigators are still hoping that anyone with information about the case will come forward.

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