Let us start at the end of the beginning. A 911 call
By itself it seems harmless enough, a man in distress calling for help. However it is the start of a very curious case. The 911 call came in at 6:35 am on Friday Oct 3rd. A canoeist in distress caused the Coast Guard and other Law enforcement agencies to leap in. Although Mr. Price had not given his exact location his phone had provided the needed coordinates.
No sign of either John Charles Price or the canoe was found. Oh, at this point I should mention that the following Monday he was due to appear in court charged with 50 counts of possessing Child Porn. Each charge carried a maximum sentence of 5 years. If you do the math, found guilty Mr. Price was facing a serious vacation.
He was on a $255,000 bond, a bond secured by his mother using equity in her home.
The news coverage of the canoe mishap did not get a huge amount of news coverage:
A 49-year-old St. Augustine man who called 911 operators Friday to claim he’d been injured in a canoe accident near the Florida 206 bridge is now the subject of a fugitive arrest warrant after he failed to show up for a Monday trial date on child pornography charges, according to the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office.
An extensive air, ground and water search of the Matanzas River Friday night failed to find John Charles Price of the 3300 block of Pacetti Road or a canoe, and there was no evidence of foul play, the Sheriff’s Office said.
Price was arrested in September 2013 on 50 counts of child pornography and released four days later on $255,000 bond. He was last heard from at 6:35 a.m. Friday morning telling dispatchers that his canoe had hit something and he had hurt his shoulder.
I am the first to admit that I am a cynic. On one hand we have the trappings of luxury, a house, a Land Rover:
Even a spanky looking Motorhome:
Mechanics earn decent money, but do they earn enough to enjoy this level of luxury?
This is where the story gets even better. Mr. Price did indeed have a canoe, and it is still at home. If you listen to the 911 call, you will notice two things, the mention of a friend and the mention of a motor on the canoe. The friend has not come forward, he has no name. Also there are no reports of a missing canoe with a motor.
It is when you dig deeper that questions start to occur. Since his tragic canoe accident there have been no calls on his cell phone or financial transactions on his accounts. So he must be dead, right?
Well I am not so sure about that, he appears to be the beneficiary of a ‘Blind Trust’. How much, and how it is paid is unknown.
If we take the 911 call as a piece of fiction (and I do), other possibilities come into play. My first thought was he had fled to another country. This seems unlikely as John Charles Price does not have a passport. In fact in his 49 years he has rarely ventured out of his home state of Florida.
So where is he? I don’t buy the 911 call for a moment. It is far too convenient. The best I can hope for is that at the very least he has the decency to repay his mother the $255,000 for the trouble he has caused her.
I seriously doubt that John C. Price has performed the perfect disappearing act he had hoped for. While the police seem stymied by the case, the Bail Bondsmen are not. With heavy hitters Like William Cobra Staubs and Rod Dowston (Surety 3) involved every possible stone will be turned over. Also hot on the trail is recovery agent Matthew Todd, he may not have the years of experience that Cobra and Rod have, but he sure is a go getter.
We will be discussing this case on Americas Most Unwanted at 3pm eastern. To listen in live click here. The phone lines will be open and the call in number is 646-378-1120
If anyone has any information, I have people with ears wide open. Drop me a line or call Cobra at 954-328-7373.