Home > Article from newspaper > Family, cops seek tips in 2005 disappearance of deaf Berkeley man

Family, cops seek tips in 2005 disappearance of deaf Berkeley man

September 2, 2007

Rodney Texera, whose 42nd birthday was Aug. 21, was last seen in early December 2005 when he helped a deaf friend move to Oroville. Texera’s family pleaded for the public’s help today in finding him and offered a $5,000 reward. Photo courtesy Berkeley Police Department

The family of a deaf Berkeley man who has been missing for nearly two years pleaded for the public’s help Friday in finding him and offered a $5,000 reward.

Rodney Texera, whose 42nd birthday was Aug. 21, was last seen in early December 2005 when he helped a deaf friend move to Oroville in Butte County. The two men had a quarrel, and Texera was last seen walking away, said Berkeley police Sgt. Mary Kusmiss.

Texera’s mother, Pamela Creech of Newark, said she last heard from her son in an e-mail Dec. 1, 2005. Relatives hoped he would appear at family holiday get-togethers, but “he never showed up,” Creech said, her eyes red with tears.

“I knew then that something was wrong,” Creech said after Berkeley police held a news conference Friday in hopes of generating leads as to the whereabouts of Texera, who has a 13-year-old daughter.

“We just know he wouldn’t disappear like this,” Creech said. “I just want him brought home.”

A $5,000 reward for tips leading to Texera’s whereabouts is being put up by the nonprofit Carole Sund/Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation.

“Rodney’s family has lived a year and a half of every family’s nightmare,” said Kim Petersen, the foundation’s executive director. Not knowing where Texera could be, she said, is “so excruciating. Don’t let them see Rodney’s 43rd birthday without any answers.”

Shortly after Texera disappeared, police interviewed the deaf friend who last saw him in Oroville on Dec. 8 or 9, 2005. “They felt at the time that his story was sincere,” Kusmiss said, adding that there was no evidence pointing to foul play.

As Kusmiss spoke, an American Sign Language interpreter translated what she said into sign language.

Texera, who has been deaf since birth, does not use his voice. If he orders at restaurants or has a question, he writes. He does not drive and was known to use AC Transit and other public transportation.

Texera lived at UA Homes at 1040 University Ave. in Berkeley. Although he was last seen in Oroville, police there referred the case to Berkeley police.

Texera has not accessed his e-mail or bank accounts since he disappeared, Kusmiss said. “Rodney has not reached out in any way,” she said.

Texera’s daughter’s grades have suffered, and she wears her father’s jacket even if it’s hot outside, relatives said.

His brother, Jayson Creech, 32, of Tracy said he sometimes thinks it’s all a dream. At other times, he thinks he sees Texera when he’s driving.

“It’s been a long time,” he said. “I think today we’re going to find some answers.”

Texera is 5 feet, 3 inches tall, weighs 150 pounds, is bald and has hazel eyes. He had a mustache when he disappeared.

Anyone with information is asked to call Berkeley police at (510) 981-5900.

E-mail Henry K. Lee at hlee@sfchronicle.com.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2007/09/01/BADURT87S.DTL&feed=rss.bayarea

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  1. Lisa Marie
    September 3, 2007 at 9:08 am

    My heart goes to his 13-year-old daughter. I don’t think he’d disappear on any purpose; it sounds to me that something probably happened to him.

  2. C
    September 3, 2007 at 9:40 pm

    Both men had a quarrel and he was seen walking away? well, was the other guy ruled out as a suspect? There has to be more to the story that that. Was he familiar with the area? Sounds like foul play to me. I feel bad for his daughter. No one should ever have to go through this and I pray for the authorities to solve this and for his daughter and family to have strength to deal with all of this.

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