Melissa Ellison, called Missy, was 20-years-old.
It was Dec. 28, 1987. Missy was living in mobile home off Coljean Road in Taylor’s Trailer Park, which was owned by her parents. She had recently separated from her husband and had invited a friend and the friend’s boyfriend to move in with her to help with the bills.
Around 11:30 p.m., Missy spoke to her mother on the phone. Missy told her mother she was scared, but she wouldn’t say why.
By 4 a.m., Missy was found dead. She was beaten to death with a charred log taken from the fireplace, which was then left by the front door.
Missy’s roommate told officers she woke up because she heard Missy’s baby, Casie, crying.
Why was little Casie on the couch? Whose vehicle had left tire tracks outside the home? There were so many questions investigators worked to find answers to.
There is another strange thing that stands out to Missy’s family. They say when they were asked to look at the scene and see if anything was out of place, they noticed two pictures from her mantle were missing. Both were pictures of Missy at the beach. Its unclear what happened to the pictures, if they were taken by her killer or if they were taken by an investigator.
Maybe the biggest clue of all was a 911 call. A man called and referred to Missy’s murder and said “I’m sorry… I had to do it.”
It left 13-month-old Casie to grow up without her mother. Now 32 years old and a mother herself, Casie says it is hard to hear about her mother because she never got the chance to know her.
For her, she says justice can never be served, but she wants closure. She wants to know who killed her mother and why.
Police thinks it was someone that knew her, which means there is likely someone that knows more than what they told police 31 years ago.
“There’s got to be someone out there that saw something or heard something throughout the years,” he said. “Like I said, this happened in 1987. Throughout the years, someone might have said something about what they heard. Call us and let us follow up on that.”
No matter how small a piece of information may seem, they want someone to come forward to police.
If you know anything about the death of Missy Ellison, please call the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office 904-630-0500 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS. There is a reward of up to $3,000 for information in this case.