Suspect in 2013 Disappearance of a Clearwater Woman Dies
Posted: January 26, 2016
According to a press release from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, the main suspect in the 2013 disappearance of Roberta Rene Cable has died.
64-year-old Jerry Gaston passed away due to health related issues on January 20, 2016 at Bay Pines VA Hospital.
41 year-old Roberta Rene Cable was last seen on December 14, 2013 at 1700 Owen Drive in Unincorporated Clearwater. Cable, who went by Rene, never showed up for her first day of work on December 16th at the International House of Pancakes in Clearwater at Curlew Road and US-19. The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office was notified of her disappearance a few days after Christmas after her out-of-town family became concerned when they did not hear from her. She reportedly was living with Jerry Gaston who owns the home on Owen Drive.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office called her disappearance suspicious at the time and detectives continued their investigation into the circumstances. During the early morning hours of Wednesday, July 29, 2015, Detectives and investigators from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office arrived at the home on Owen Drive to conduct a search of the property. This exhaustive search continued well into Thursday morning when crews could be seen with ground penetrating radar, shovels and concrete cutting saws. The contents of a septic tank on the property were siphoned by Seminole Septic during the day on Wednesday.
The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office held a news conference at 1 PM on Thursday, July 30, 2015 to discuss developments in the case. Sheriff Bob Gualtieri at the scene released the following details.
The use of her cell phone stopped after December 14, 2013 and Deputies could not locate her in any medical facility. According to the Sheriff, Gaston told a friend that Cable was not home and was returning to Illinois when a friend came to the home to try to contact her back in 2013. Gaston further claims that he dropped her off at a local bus stop.
A witness reports that Cable was seen dragging suitcases to a Goodwill drop off location in the area. Some “items” have been found on the property but at this time no human remains have been found.
A parcel of property owned by Gaston at 2402 N Dee River Road in Inverness was also searched with nothing found in regards to this case.
The relationship between the two was being described as one where he was trying to help Cable get back on her feet. Some arguments took place between the two as he was trying to remove her from the house. The Sheriff states that Gaston was not happy with her marijuana use. Gaston, in July 2015 was being described as a recluse and is an alcoholic. At that point in time, no probable cause existed for the arrest of Gaston.
To this day, Cable’s whereabouts remain unknown.
Detectives continue to investigate her disappearance.
Anyone with information that would help shed additional light on this case is urged to call Corporal Jeff Capra of the Robbery/Homicide Unit at (727) 582-6200; or to remain anonymous and be eligible for a reward contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS or www.crimestoppersofpinellas.org.