65ºF

Slain woman's mother seeks justice 8 months after daughter's body found

43-year-old went missing from nightclub in October; remains found month later

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – More than eight months after her daughter's body was found on the Northside, a Jacksonville mother is still searching for answers about her daughter's death.

Sherry Prather, 43, went missing from the Boots and Bottles nightclub on North Main Street in Oceanway last October. Her remains were found not far away in a wooded area off Braddock Road a month later.

Police believe she was killed, but so far have not made any arrests or named any suspects.

Prather's mother, Norma Ellis, said she's frustrated her daughter's killer hasn't been caught. She said she has trouble sleeping, eating and doing anything knowing that her daughter's killer is on the loose, and she hopes someone can give police information to help solve the case.

"I look all the time. I go out just about every day to that gravesite where they found her," Ellis said. "I walk all in those woods looking for stuff. I look all over."

Ellis hopes and prays that a clue will turn up and help detectives find the person who took the life of a mother of two.

"That was my only child," Ellis said. "She was my whole life and I can't stand it knowing that he's out there. And all these murders that's happened, he's probably in on them, too."

Police said Tuesday there was no new information to release in the case.

"They keep telling me they got all kind of leads and they're working on things they can't discuss with me," Ellis said. "They do keep in touch with me, but they don't tell me anything new."

Ellis said her daughter got a ride on the back of a motorcycle with a friend while leaving the nightclub. Ellis has her suspicions of someone she believes may be responsible, but investigators have never publicly named him as a suspect.

Ellis believes until the killer is caught, her daughter's soul can't get any rest.

"She's waiting for justice there, and once it's done, she will leave," Ellis said.

"I want him punished. I want him punished so I can lay down at night and not worry that I'm going to hear her come knocking on the door saying, 'Momma, let me in,'" Ellis said. "And that's what I hear every night. I hear her calling me to unlock the door and let her in, and I can't take it anymore."

Anyone with any information about Prather's death is asked to call the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office at 904-630-0500 or Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.