- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 6, 2003

ST. LOUIS, Feb. 6 (UPI) — St. Louis police said Thursday they have no substantial leads in the disappearance of a Lake of the Ozarks jewelry dealer and a large quantity of valuable gems he was carrying.

Police said John "Grizzly" Slayton, 63, of Osage Beach, Mo., was reported missing Dec. 10. Neither he nor any of his gems have been sighted since then despite $110,000 in rewards offered by the International Watch and Jewelry Guild and the Missouri Pawnbrokers Association.

According to his daughter, Slayton traveled to St. Louis every Monday and was carrying a large quantity of watches, rings and loose diamonds because of the Christmas rush. Police said he was last seen at a pawnshop about 12:30 p.m. Dec. 9. He was headed west on St. Charles Rock Road to Mid America Watch Supply but never made it to his destination. His wife said she last heard from him about 2 p.m. that day.

Police said they are investigating the case as a missing person rather than a homicide but would release no further details.

Slayton's white, 2003 Ford Expedition was found Dec. 13 at an apartment complex in suburban Oakville, with the cases Slayton used to carry his inventory reportedly still in the vehicle.

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