David Clayton Warner

Left and Center: David circa, 1983

Right: Age Progressed to age 42


Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance

Missing Since: March 2, 1983

Missing From: Jefferson City, Jefferson County, Tennessee

Classification: Non-Family Abduction

Date Of Birth: January 31, 1971

Age: 12 years old

Height and Weight: 5’4″ and 110 pounds

Distinguishing Characteristics: Caucasian Male, Blonde hair, Blue eyes, David suffers from epilepsy, he may go by the nickname “Little David”

Clothing/Jewelry Description: A black/white Pittsburgh Steelers sweatshirt, a pair of blue jeans, and sneakers

NCMEC Number: 601934


Details of Disappearance

David Warner was last seen on March 2nd 1983 in Jefferson City, Tennessee. He attended school that day and afterwards, he told his family that he was going to a church function which was up the street from his residence at the time.

He did in fact go to the church but did not go inside, instead he went to Druthers restaurant. The restaurant had a policy where children who present their school report cards with good grades would be able to get a free meal of no pay. David has just gotten his report card and he had an A in physical education so he got a free burger.

David left the restaurant and it’s unknown what exactly happened afterwards. Most reports state that David went to a friends home to a friend’s home to watch television and then left to walk home at approximately 7:00 pm. He has never been seen or heard from since.

David’s family didn’t realize that he was missing until the next morning when they checked his bed and found the the bed was made in a way to make it look as though that David was sleeping. They weren’t initially concerned and thought that he had simply spent the night at the friends house which is something he oftentimes did.

Authorities initially believed it was possible that David left on his own accord. His family, however, was adamant on the fact that he would not do this. According to the family, David was very friendly to everyone, including strangers, and could’ve easily been lured by someone with the intent to take him.

Authorities at one point received a tip that David was living with a cousin of his biological father, Ivan “Red” Wilson in Miami, Florida. The authorities working on David’s disappearance sent Miami authorities a photograph of David and a detective from Florida said he had seen a boy matching David’s description. It took three months for authorities to disprove this lead. David’s father and Ivan stated they did not know where his son was or what happened to him and were not involved in his disappearance.

Authorities suspect that foul play was involved in Warner’s disappearance and that he may have been abducted and murdered.

At the time of David’s disappearance, he was described as a bright but not a very good student. He was a fourth grade student at the Jefferson City Elementary School in 1983 He was described as a kind and bright child by his family. David was legally adopted by his grandmother and raised by her. His mother was unmarried and a teenager when she gave birth to him. He was close to his mother throughout his whole life. He was described as being street smart and very pleasant to be around.

David’s case remains unsolved and foul play is suspected. His case remains classified as a non family abduction.


Investigating Agency

If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:

Jefferson City Police Department 615-475-2002


Source Information

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

The Charley Project

The Doe Network

NamUs