A car found in a pond near Howeston Mill Drive just north of Interstate 40 off Old Medina Road and Hopper Barker Road was found by a dive team after someone reported seeing the car underwater.
The team recovered a 2006 Jeep Liberty that belonged to William Brian McKenzie, who was reported missing in September of 2019.
JPD also confirmed human remains were found inside the vehicle and have been sent to Tennessee Medical Examiners’ Office for an autopsy.
ORIGINAL STORY William Brian McKenzie, Jr., 22, has been missing since September 27, 2019 from Tennessee, after giving a man a ride that was later arrested for shooting four other men, he had asked to give him a ride.
William was left the Denny’s at 28 San Pebble Dr. after his shift that ended at 3 p.m. McKenzie went to a friend’s house at Greenview Dr. after work, where he met a man named Keenan Murphy and agreed to give him a ride home on his way home in his 2006 Jeep Liberty. The friends he went to visit said they saw him, but didn’t know where he went after he left.
Here is Ric D. Alex explaining what happened the day that William went missing:
Frances Gaines, William’s mother said she last spoke to her son on the phone around 5:30pm, September 27 and he said he was on his way home. Gaines posted, “Keenan Murphy, doesn’t want to tell authorities the location of my son’s whereabouts or the vehicle. I’m begging please He was obviously on the run and my son was an easy target right after work on a pay day and a vehicle, my son goes to his friend Sean’s house not knowing he’d be disappearing soon with a serial killer. Thankfully others talk and care enough to tell me that Keenan was on the porch and asked my son for a ride when the friend he trusted Sean Wightright the friend he visited and trusted, told me it was only he and my son on the porch no one else and my son left alone. Sean lied to me and authorities. Even his Godsister and friends told me Sean was withholding valuable information. So finally Sean admit my son William left with Keenan Murphy and was never seen again.”
William has not been heard from since, nor has his Jeep been found.
Keenan Murphy, 21, was arrested after a shooting that occurred on Sept. 25 and Oct. 4. He faces first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder charges for those shootings where he shot four men after he asked them to give him a ride. said authorities. Two men were killed and the other two were wounded.
William’s phone has been turned off since he last spoke to his mom, and he did not have his location app on. But his cellphone last pinged off a cell phone tower near Ridgecrest Road in North Jackson.
Not long after William went missing, Gaines began receiving text messages demanding money for the return of William. One even showed a photo of William with tape over his mouth. Police stated later that the photo had been doctored. They also discovered that the phone number used to call Gaines was a phone number the FBI had on the scam database. The call originated from South Africa.
Sadly, ransom messages to family’s missing their loved ones has become a common thing. One of the first things I do when family’s contact me about their missing loved one is to warn them about these types of scams. The text messages and sometimes phone calls are brutal in the language and threats they use to scare the family.
NBC reported in 2019, that there is phone calls coming from Mexico, too demanding a ransom in a “virtual kidnapping” scam. Newsweek in 2017, reported on prisoner’s in Mexico trolling social media looking for unsuspecting victims. They would call and said they had their family member and were holding them for ransom and ask for small amounts of money, usually around $3000.
William was wearing his black Denny’s uniform with a small yellow Denny’s logo on the left sleeve, non slip work shoes. He has tattoos on his right arm, a small scar below his lower left lip towards chin near cheek. He had a diamond stud earring in both ears, a white gold bracelet thin chain and plate reading Diana his girlfriend’s name and a black and white lanyard reading “Supreme”. He had a black backpack he left from work with and black jacket.
The friends and family of William have searched extensively for him , but he and his vehicle remain missing. Please keep an eye out for William and his black Jeep Liberty with plates 3L66T7. It could be parked anywhere like in an apartment complex or a Walmart parking lot for instance.
Anyone with information on McKenzie’s whereabouts is encouraged to contact the Jackson Police Department at 731-425-8400.