Investigation reopened into 2012 disappearance of Nacogdoches man

Investigation reopened into 2012 disappearance of Nacogdoches man
Published: Jan. 26, 2022 at 2:18 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 26, 2022 at 10:26 PM CST

NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - For a decade, a Nacogdoches family has agonized over the disappearance of Derrick Dwayne Daniels.

The cold case has been reopened in the Houston area, much to the satisfaction of the Daniels family.

Derrick Daniels would be 49 this year. Ten years ago, the Nacogdoches High School graduate was living in Ft. Bend County, which is near Houston. He disappeared on Jan. 4, 2012. It’s a day his father and sister will never forget.

“I keep going back to that day,” said sister Jeanneatta Daniels. “As a matter of fact, I think I was the last family member that talked to him that day.”

We first met the Daniels family in 2012. Since then, Daniels’ mother passed away, never knowing what happened to her son. A 77-year-old father grieves in her place.

“It’s kinda a hard thing when your kid comes up missing,” said quiet-spoken William Earl Daniels. “Nobody knows what happened and all. It’s a strange thing.”

However, it serves as motivation not to give up for six siblings, including Derrick’s twin.

Jeanneatta thumbed through images of her brother in her cell phone.

“This is the picture they have on this thing when they put out a poster when he first went missing,” Jeanneatta said. A superimposed heart with the words ‘I Love You’ are on the image.

And then she scrolls down to a young boy.

“And that is his son,” she solemnly said.

The boy was 12 when his father disappeared.

On the tenth anniversary of Daniel’s’ disappearance, the Ft. Bend Sheriff’s Office has reopened the cold case. Jeanneatta and her family met with investigators Tuesday.

“I can’t explain it, but I do feel more optimistic about them starting over this time. I do feel that maybe somewhere down the line we are going to get some answers,” Jeanneatta.

The Daniels family is reaching out to news media from Galveston to East Texas to recap the details of the case. They know Derrick’s truck was found unharmed in Galveston. They hope modern investigative tools, unavailable a decade ago, will reveal additional clues, but there’s something the family wants more than ever.

“Closure is something that we’re most definitely looking for. And another thing is it doesn’t matter who, the when, or the why. Closure is what we need,” Jeanneatta stressed.

Anyone with information regarding this cold case is asked to call Ft. Bend County Sheriff’s investigators at (281) 341-4686 or Ft. Bend County Crime Stoppers at (281) 342-8477.

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