Left and Center: Sarena circa, 1996
Right: Age Progressed to age 19
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: December 1, 1996
Missing From: Fayetteville, Cumberland County, North Carolina
Classification: Endangered Missing
Date Of Birth: August 14, 1985
Age: 11 years old
Height and Weight: 5’0″ and 85 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Biracial Female; Sarena is African American and Caucasian, Black hair, Brown eyes, Sarena has a birth mark on her lower back, some agencies might spell her first name as “Serena”
Details of Disappearance
Sarena was last seen in Fayetteville, North Carolina on December 1st 1996. She was last known to be at her family’s residence located on Winter Park Drive. On the day she disappeared, she was accompanied by her mother, Robby Ann Floyd and her half siblings, Brent and Brenttany Hughes. A neighbor recalled seeing Robby packing boxes into her blue van outside the home in the driveway. She claimed that they were driving to Alabama to visit her sick father.
Robby was apparently accompanied by a woman whom she introduced as her mother. The neighbor stated she appeared to be in a hurry. The family was also accompanied by Robby’s younger teenaged sister, Jennifer Jane Hughes. Robby’s mother later told investigators that she was not with her daughter on the day she vanished because she hadn’t visited her daughter’s home in several years. The woman remains unidentified.
At the time, she lived in the home with her third husband, Jason “Shane” Allen Floyd, and they had a child together, Brandon. He told investigators that Robby had driven her sister and three children to Sylacauga, Alabama and that he had spoken to her on the phone shortly after the family departed North Carolina in late 1996. She claimed that they were staying in a motel near her fathers residence and that she would call back in several days but she never did so.
Investigators were late to investigate the disappearances initially. Family members have stated that Robby did not maintain constant contact with them so they were unaware of the fact that they were missing. The family was not reported as missing until August of 1998, nearly two years after they vanished. Jason stated he never heard from his wife again and never saw the other children or Jennifer again. He and Brandon continued living in the family residence until February 1997. They apparently moved away from the area afterwards.
According to their relatives that live in Alabama, Robby, Brenttany, Brent, Sarena, and Jennifer never arrived in Alabama. Investigators believe it’s possible however that they indeed did and that the five are still alive somewhere. According to investigators, there has been activity on Robby’s social security number since 1999. It was used at two different residences in Sylacauge, Alabama with three different versions of her name. Relatives of Robby live in Goodwater, Alabama which is 20 miles away.
Investigators were also able to locate at least six individuals who claimed to have seen and spoken to the missing family members since their disappearance in 1996. However, investigators are unsure if this information is completely accurate and it’s unclear if the person who might’ve used Robby’s social security number was indeed her.
Despite this, investigators have received multiple possible sightings of the family. In the summer of 1999, authorities received two confirmed sightings of Jennifer Hughes. In one of them, she was at a Walmart store located on Ramsey Street in Fayetteville. It’s also possible that Sarena contacted her father, Jerry Glenn in 1998 on the phone and another relative in 1999. She might’ve also called him in 2002 to ask him why he wasn’t forwarding her SSI checks to her.
Some reports state that Robby’s landlord last saw her moving out of her home and that her mother and stepfather helped the family move to Alabama. They’ve noted that Robby’s mother was never cooperative in the investigation but the family discredits most of this and says they don’t know anything about where the missing children and women are.
Jerry believes the family might’ve met with foul play. Besides the possible activity on Robby’s social security number, there’s been no confirmed usage on the number since 1996. Robby’s three children also haven’t used their social security numbers and neither has Jennifer. No schools have requested the children’s records either, indicating they didn’t attend any school after their disappearances. Robby also hasn’t registered her van or renewed her drivers license since 1996.
Robby’s mother also said it was uncharacteristic of her daughter to leave without warning for an extended period of time, especially with her children. Robby used to always pick up social security checks for her children and she hasn’t cashed any since prior to their disappearance. Her mother also said that Robby had planned to move her sick father to North Carolina in 1997 in order to care for him. However, he died in 1998.
Investigators have no suspects in the case. Jason did mention to the neighbor that observed him and his son still living in the home that he and Robby were divorcing. He still lives in the state of North Carolina with his son. He has refused to take a polygraph exam in relation to the case but investigators doubt he was involved in the family’s disappearance.
It’s possible Floyd was involved in welfare fraud in 1996. In fact, on the day she disappeared, investigators were going to question her in regards to worthless checks. However, investigators have not issued any warrants for her arrest and her involvement is unclear. Investigators are so certain that the family is alive that the case was closed in the 2000s.
Investigators don’t know what led to the family’s disappearance but they have acknowledged it’s possible they simply don’t want to be found. Their cases remain unsolved.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Cumberland County Sheriffs Office 910-677-5400
North Carolina Wanted Tip Line 1-866-439-2683
Alabama State Bureau of Investigation 334-517-2842