Officials on the lookout for missing Starkville man


Jarrel Ward

Jarrel Ward



Dispatch Staff Report



Local authorities are looking for a man believed to be missing who was last seen in Columbus. 


Columbus Police Chief Fred Shelton confirmed that the family of 24-year-old Jarrel Ward, of Starkville, went to Columbus Police Department on Friday to report him missing. Ward is a black male with short hair.  


Shelton said Ward was reportedly last seen at the Donut Factory in Columbus. However, Shelton declined to confirm when Ward was last seen, saying he was not present when the family visited the department. 


Ward was last seen Thursday morning wearing a white Nike t-shirt and jeans, according a flyer circulating social media. 


Shelton also said CPD recommended the family file a missing persons report with Starkville Police Department or the Oktibbeha County Sheriff's Office, depending on which agency's jurisdiction they live in. 


"At that point, we couldn't take an official report because it didn't happen here," Shelton said. "We will be on lookout and put out a (be on lookout alert) for him. An official report has to be filed with Starkville Police Department or Oktibbeha County. 


"Right now, all we have is a person is missing," Shelton added. "There's no reason to believe at the moment any criminal activity is afoot." 


SPD Public Information Officer Brandon Lovelady confirmed the department has not received a report as of Saturday evening. OCSO Lt. Brett Watson also confirmed his department has not gotten a report. However both departments are aware Ward is missing and have been in contact with CPD. 


Anyone with information on Ward's whereabouts can contact CPD at 662-244-3500, SPD at 662-323-4131 or OCSO at 662-323-2421.




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