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Missing Avi Keys
Keys, circa 2004
Missing Since 05/15/2004
Classification Endangered Missing
Date of Birth Used 02/12/1985 (36)
Age 19 years old
Height and Weight 5'6, 140 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian male. Black hair, brown eyes.
Details of Disappearance Keys was last seen in Fairbanks, Alaska sometime in the second half of May 2004.
On May 13, Keys went for a ride down Steese Highway with Jason Fisher, David Mason and Josiah Thurneau. All four of the men were on a methamphetamine binge and had been high for days. During the car ride, Fisher shot Mason twice in the head and Thurneau helped him dismember the body. The motive for the murder is unclear.
A couple of days later, police attempted to stop Keys and Fisher for a traffic offense. Mason's body parts were in the trunk of the car, and the men fled in their vehicle, leading authorities on a high-speed chase
The police caught Keys and charged him with driving under the influence, failure to stop for a peace officer and criminal mischief. Fisher got away. When Keys's father bailed him out of jail, Keys told him he was going away for a few days.
Police impounded the car when they arrested Keys, but they didn't search it. Weeks passed before someone noticed the smell in the impound lot, opened the trunk and discovered the corpse. By then, Keys was missing and was presumed to have fled to avoid prosecution for the charges related to the police chase.
About a year passed before Mason's body was identified. Fisher later pleaded no contest to second-degree murder and is serving 82 years in prison. He says he doesn't know Keys's whereabouts. Thurneau testified against Fisher and was granted immunity from prosecution in exchange for his cooperation.
Warrants were issued for Keys's arrest after he missed court dates in connection with the police chase charges. He has a prior arrest record for assault and hindering prosecution.
Although investigators initially believed Keys was hiding from the law, foul play is now suspected in his case. Most fugitives get in touch with their family to let them know how they are, but Keys's loved ones haven't heard from him since he went missing. It's unclear whether his disappearance is connected to Mason's murder.
Keys grew up in Wasilla, Alaska. His mother gave up her rights to him soon after his birth and he was raised by his father.