MARIETTA, Ga. – This week answered at least one question weighing on Chase Massner’s family’s minds—where was their son, their husband, their father? He was likely found, buried behind his friend’s Cobb County home. But, more questions linger.
Massner, a 26-year-old Iraq War veteran, went missing March 27, 2014. Cherokee County Sheriff's Office said in 2014, Massner was last seen at his friend, James Bradshaw "Brad" Clement’s house on Farmbrook Lane in Kennesaw, Ga. He was reported missing by his wife and mother.
Over the years, his family held extensive searches, with hundreds of volunteers, in the area where he was last seen and professional search and rescue groups were called in, but no leads ever surfaced. Until now.
More than three years later, Cobb County Police recovered human remains at Clement’s former Kennessaw home after, police said, the newest homeowners noticed something suspicious in their backyard.
Police said they believe the remains are Massner's—however, a positive identification has not yet been made by the medical examiner.
Meanwhile, Clement has been charged with concealing a death.
Family friend, Christine Lemoine, of Marietta, Ga., said that was when his family thought they could start moving towards justice. But that was short-lived.
According to police, on Friday, Clement told them that he would turn himself in. However, he did not show up at the Cobb County Jail, with his attorney, as promised.
Lemoine, a spokeswoman for the family, said the new developments--finding remains, charging Clement--were a step in the right direction, and now, they have taken two steps back with Clement on the lam.
“It’s almost back to square one, if you think about it. Now, they have nothing,” she said. “From day one the understanding that everyone had, is that the last person to see Chase alive is Brad Clement.”
Massner's mother, Stephanie is on social media, Lemoine said, pleading with Clement, urging to do the right thing.
"This woman's not sleeping. She's lost her only son and she wants answers," Lemoine said. “If he is watching the news at any time, he needs to turn himself in.”
She has a message of her own on behalf of the Massners.
“He keeps saying he isn't guilty, that he's been framed. But if you haven't done anything wrong, then show your face. Come forward.”
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Massner's family previously told 11Alive that he struggled with returning to civilian life.
He served a year in Iraq and returned in 2011. His wife, Amanda Massner said, in 2014, that her husband had been through some tough times since returning from his tour in the Middle East.
"Since he got back, he's had ups and downs with struggling with his mental stability," Amanda said in a 2014 interview.
Amanda said Chase had reached a low point late the week that he went missing, she said, and went away to visit his friend "to get some space."
"We've all been out for hours and hours with flashlights, just walking basically trying to see if we see him," Amanda said.
Chase was last seen wearing a red sweatshirt and khaki pants. He is 6'2" and weighs around 175 pounds. He has tattoos on his arm of a treasure chest, an angel and the name Massner. He has a chest tattoo of two roses on the right pectoral muscle.
"No matter what it is that he is going through right now, his family loves him, no matter what; and we are here for him, and we just want peace of mind that he is OK; and that he is safe. We want to help him, and we went to be with him, and we want to get through this together," Amanda said.
Chase was given an honorable discharge from the U.S. Army in December 2015.
On Saturday, Cobb County Sheriff's Office has released a "Be on the lookout" flyer to the public.
“We just want Brad's face to get blasted out as far as it can so this manhunt can come to an end,” Lemoine said.