Investigators still working to solve Jacksonville Beach’s oldest cold case

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. — Jonathan Hagans or “Jon Jon” as his family lovingly called him, was only three years old when his family says he went missing during a family gathering at Jacksonville Beach in 1968.

Joel Hagans, Jonathan’s brother said he vanished without a trace. “There was no evidence. It was literally into thin air,” he told Action News Jax on Friday.

Jonathan Hagans would have turned 57 this year.

Back in the 1960s police believed Jonathan may have tragically been swept away by the ocean, but his family believes he was taken by someone and is still alive today.

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Even though this case has gone cold the Jacksonville Beach Police Department has worked hard to keep this story alive.

“As many years as I’ve worked here and the other detectives have worked here this case has been passed down basically through decades to new detectives that have come into the investigative unit so they can take a look at it because we always want to have a fresh set of eyes to see if there’s anything that maybe somebody has missed,” Mark Evans. detective division commander with the Jacksonville Beach Police Department said.

Since the case, law enforcement has evolved and there are now new DNA databases, more detailed police reports, and techniques to try and find a missing person.

“In this particular case there’s been at least two people that have come forward throughout the 50 years and one of them came forward recently,” Evans said.

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Using DNA testing they were able to rule out that these individuals weren’t Jonathan.

“It hurt the family because there was some renewed hope at that point in time. But at the same time, we want to find Jonathan we don’t want to find somebody who wasn’t Jonathan,” Joel Hagans said.

Now Joel is just hoping for some more answers to find out what happen to his bother.

“Somebody sees a story like this or something. Somebody can come forward and say you know I did see something that day,” Joel Hagans said.

If you have any information about Jonathan Hagans you are asked to contact the Jacksonville Beach Police Department at 904-270-1661 or the National Center for Missing or Exploited Children at 1-800-843-5678