Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2008

Family of missing Dickerson man issues community plea

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The family of a Dickerson man who has been missing for nearly six months is asking the community to help them find their son.

A neighbor of John James Morris, 38, last saw him on July 30, standing at the edge of the driveway at the home he shared with his boyfriend on Whites Ferry Road around 11 p.m., according to Cpl. Jimmy Robinson, a Montgomery County Police spokesman, and a Maryland Missing Persons Network press release. Morris’ parents, who live in New Jersey, filed a missing person report on Aug. 23 after he began missing their weekly telephone conversations, Robinson said.

According to the statement, Morris had recently ended a 12-year relationship with his live-in boyfriend, who his mother, Madeline Morris, said was staying at the couple’s Washington, D.C., condo at the time.

‘‘It’s not like him not to call,” said Morris in a telephone interview with The Gazette. She described her son as friendly and easy-going.

John Morris had recently returned to Maryland after a weeklong trip to New Jersey, and he was planning to go back after retrieving his belongings, Madeline Morris said. When she last spoke to her son on July 30, he told her that somebody was coming to pick him up. The neighbor who last saw John Morris told police that he appeared to be waiting for a ride, Robinson said.

Morris, who has attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and a history of depression, sounded distressed during their last telephone conversation, Madeline Morris said.

‘‘He was just not like himself,” she said. ‘‘He was angry and depressed. He was just hallucinating.”

No one has reported hearing from or seeing Morris since, Robinson said. All of his belongings, including his truck and his dog, were at the home when police checked in, Madeline Morris said.

The Maryland Missing Persons Network, a volunteer organization that helps locate missing persons, describes John Morris as 6 feet tall and 185 pounds with brown eyes, graying brown hair, a tattoo of a snake on his right forearm and a tattoo of a scorpion on his left shoulder. A talented painter, he may be working as a landscaper, a handyman or a glazier, according to the statement.

Anyone with information about Morris is asked to call county police Det. Rod Stephens at 301-840-2650.