DADE CITY (FOX 13) - It's a secret haunting the hills of Hernando County for more than two decades: Who killed 12-year-old Jennifer Odom, and why?
On February 25, 1993, her body was found in an abandoned orange grove in southeast Hernando County. Since then, the girl's mom has pleaded to the public for help.
"Please do the right thing. Do the right thing so we can have a resolution," Renee Converse said back in 2006.
But as years passed, new leads turned into dead ends. Back in 2006, Hernando investigators announced they were getting help from the FBI to re-examine forensic evidence. They said they had narrowed the group of suspects and developed a profile of Jennifer's killer. Playing cards with Jennifer's case information were even distributed in jails, in hopes of finally getting the tip detectives were waiting for.
Back in June of 2013, many thought the sheriff's office finally had a break in the murder case. Neighbors anxiously watched as a dive team spent two days searching a body of water near Lake Jovita. There was speculation detectives had received a tip about the blue truck seen slowing near Jennifer the day of her disappearance.
Once again, that tip turned up nothing.
Twenty-four years later, the sheriff's office remains confident that someone knows something. Family members are holding on to hope that one day they'll get an answer to who killed their little girl.
If you have any information in Jennifer Odom's case, you're asked to call Detective George Loydgren with the Hernando County Sheriff's Office at 352-754-6830.