Terrance Williams and Felipe Santos went missing in 2004 and 2003, respectively, under very similar circumstances in Naples, Florida. Both Williams and Santos were last seen being arrested by former Collier County Sheriff’s deputy Corporal Steve Calkins. He claims he decided not to charge them and last saw the men after he dropped them at Circle K convenience stores. Actor Tyler Perry offered a $100,000 reward for any information leading to the location of the men or leading to an arrest in the case. Al Sharpton, of the National Action Network, and Ben Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP, also joined Perry in raising awareness of the cause. The disappearances were covered by many different news outlets and television shows, such as the Investigation Discovery series Disappeared and others.

On January 12, 2004, 27-year-old Terrance Williams went missing in Naples, Florida. Williams was originally from Chattanooga, Tennessee and had recently moved to Florida to be near his mother. He was a father to four children. Williams’ roommate, Jason Gonzalez, says he spoke to Terrance on the phone on the evening of Sunday, January 11, before heading to bed. Williams had attended a party that evening at a coworker’s house. He did not then have a valid driver’s license after being cited for driving under the influence, and the registration on his car was expired. He decided to drive to the party illegally after being unable to find another ride. Gonzalez became concerned when his roommate did not return home and emailed Williams’ mother on January 13 about his concerns.

The Williams family called police and filed a missing person report. Shortly afterward, Williams’ aunt was able to track down Williams’ vehicle; it had been towed from Naples Memorial Cemetery. The tow record shows that a tow was requested because Williams’ Cadillac was obstructing traffic. The tow report was signed by a sheriff’s deputy named Steve Calkins. The family contacted the police station and discovered that Calkins had filed neither an incident report nor an arrest.

Terrance’s mother, Marcia Williams, contacted workers at the cemetery, who told her that they witnessed Calkins pull Williams over and ask him for identification, which he did not have. Employees stated that Calkins patted Williams down and put him in the back of the patrol car. Before driving off with Williams, Calkins then asked the cemetery employees if he could leave the Cadillac in the lot. Calkins was witnessed returning to the cemetery between 15 minutes and an hour later and moving the Cadillac from a parking spot to the side of the road. The car keys were found on the ground beside the car.

Following the witness statement by the cemetery employees, the Williams family repeatedly called the police station asking to speak to deputy Calkins. He was contacted by dispatch and asked about the incident. Calkins claimed to have no memory of having any cars towed on that day and claimed he did not arrest anyone on that day, either. He was contacted later and claimed to have a somewhat better recollection of his contact with Williams.

A few days later, Calkins’ supervisors asked him to submit an incident report. Calkins’ report states that he first came in contact with Williams at 12:15pm after noticing that the car Williams was driving was “in distress”. Calkins claimed he followed Williams to the cemetery parking lot and that Williams asked for a ride to a nearby Circle K because he was late for work. (Williams did not work at the Circle K.) According to Calkins, after dropping him off at the Circle K, Williams told him the paperwork for the car was in the vehicle’s glove compartment. Calkins claimed that he returned to the Cadillac and discovered that the proper registration was not in the car and that he felt deceived, so he called Circle K from his work issued cell phone and asked to speak to Williams. The clerk allegedly told him over the phone that Williams did not work there. According to the report, Calkins then called in the license plate number and found that the plates were expired. However, further investigation revealed that phone and surveillance records did not back up Calkins’ story: there was no sign of Williams or Calkins on surveillance footage from the Circle K, and the phone records from Calkins’ cell phone showed no call to the Circle K. Circle K employees were interviewed, and no witnesses could be found to place Calkins or Williams there. At this point, Marcia Williams filed a complaint against Steve Calkins.

A new lead in the case surfaced when the Mexican Consulate in Miami contacted Marcia Williams to tell her about another man who had vanished in a similar fashion. Mexican immigrant Felipe Santos had gone missing three months prior, after deputy Calkins claimed he dropped him off at another Circle K, approximately 4 miles from the location where he claimed he dropped off Williams.

Felipe Santos, 24, was a Mexican national living illegally in the United States in nearby Immokalee, Florida. He had been living in the United States for three years at the time of his disappearance, and sending money back to his family in Mexico. He was last seen October 1, 2003, at approximately 6:30am. Santos was driving to work with his two brothers when he was involved in a minor motor vehicle accident in Naples. Collier County sheriff’s deputy Steve Calkins cited Santos for reckless driving and driving without a license or insurance, and placed him in his patrol car. Santos was last seen riding away with Calkins.

Later that day, Santos’ boss contacted the county jail to post bail, and it was discovered that Santos was never booked. Calkins claimed that he changed his mind about the arrest because Santos was “polite and cooperative”, left him at a local Circle K, and drove off. The other driver in the accident contradicted that report, stating that Calkins was agitated about Santos’ lack of documentation. “He just stated that he was tired of pulling people over that didn’t have licenses,” she said.

Two weeks later, after Calkins submitted his incident report, Santos’ family filed a missing persons report as well as a complaint against Calkins. An investigation cleared Calkins of any wrongdoing. Santos has not been heard from since. Santos’ wife, Apolonia Cruz-Cortez, has questioned the quality of the investigation into her husband’s disappearance, citing the fact that she has not been interviewed by investigators.

Further suspicion was cast on Calkins when the recording of his call to dispatch requesting the tow of Williams’ car revealed further conflicting statements. In this recording, Calkins described the car as abandoned and blocking the road. This statement contradicted both his incident report and the witness statements, both of which reported that Calkins himself moved the vehicle to its location blocking the road. Calkins joked with the operator: “Maybe he’s out there in the cemetery. He’ll come back and his car will be gone.” He was also heard using inappropriate language during the call, describing the car as a “homie Cadillac”. Calkins defended his misstatements to the operator, telling investigators that he was just “joking around” with a friend. He insists he moved the car to assist the towing company, as opposed to attempting to make it look abandoned.

Approximately 20 minutes later, at 1:12 pm, Calkins requested a background check on “Terrance Williams”, giving an inaccurate birth date—a specific date that Williams had previously given the police when he was arrested. This contradicts Calkins’ earlier statement that he never knew Williams’ last name or any other personal details.

Because the main person of interest in the case was a police officer, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the FBI were called in to work on the case. Various other investigative techniques were used, including the covert placement of a GPS device on Calkins’ vehicle and a forensic investigation of the patrol car. Cadaver dogs were used to survey the areas identified by the GPS, but these turned up no further evidence.

Santos, 23, was last seen at the Greentree Shopping Center at Airport-Pulling and Immokalee roads. He is a Hispanic man who stands 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighs 150 pounds. He has brown eyes and black hair. He lived in Immokalee at the time of his disappearance.

Terrance Williams was 27 when he was last seen Jan. 4, 2004, in the area of 111th Avenue North and Vanderbilt Drive.

Williams is a black man, standing 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighing 160 pounds. He has brown eyes and brown hair. He has a tattoo of a “T” above his left chest, a tattoo of “ET” on his right shoulder, and a tattoo of “Terrance” on his left forearm. His left front tooth is solid gold, and his right front tooth has a gold crown with “T” on it.

Both Williams and Santos have loving families who love and miss them both. The families of both have been without answers for 13 years now and have been living a nightmare that no family should have to go through. Someone out there has information about what happened to both Williams and Santos and someone needs to come forward and speak up now. If you have information about this case, I urge you to contact law enforcement today.

I strongly encourage anyone who may have information on either Williams or Santos to contact the Collier County Sheriff’s Office at 239-793-9300 or if you wish to remain anonymous you can also call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477).

~Acdetective~

 

2 comments on “Terrance Williams & Felipe Santos – Intro

    • Because they never found the bodies of Terrance Williams and Felipe Santos. It’s clearly a race crime. His comment that Terrance’s cadillac was a “homie cadillac” made me very upset. There’s a good chance Terrance and Felipe weren’t his only victims.

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