Local News

Fayetteville police searching for missing soldier

Posted February 11, 2009 5:40 p.m. EST
Updated March 9, 2009 5:12 p.m. EDT

— Police on Wednesday asked for the public’s assistance in locating a missing Fort Bragg soldier.

Spc. Joseph E. Putnam, 22, was last seen at 1208 Bragg Blvd. at about 4:15 a.m. Tuesday, police said. Putnam is assigned to Company C, 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 82nd Airborne Division's 4th Brigade Combat Team.

"I am desperately seeking my baby,” said Angela Stanford, Putnam’s mother.

"I know the military is definitely concerned. So are we,” said Lt. Randy Podobinski, with the Fayetteville Police Department.

About 10 hours after he was last seen, an unidentified man used Putnam's debit card at a Kangaroo convenience store at 1764 Ireland Drive, police said. He was described as a black man in his late 30s to early 40s, about 6 feet 2 and 190 pounds. He was bald, had a close-trimmed beard and had recent burn marks to his abdomen. He was wearing a white T-shirt with blue exercise pants.

"I am trying my best not to think the worst. But what they are telling me is not adding up, and he should be showing up somewhere,” Stanford said.

Putnam was described as a white man, 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 150 pounds, with blond hair and blue eyes. He has tattoos of a cow skull and the words “Cowboy Up” on his left shoulder. He was wearing a white T-shirt, Wrangler jeans and cowboy boots.

"If anybody out there knows where he is, I need to know where he is. I just want to know where he is,” Stanford said.

Anyone with information on Putnam’s whereabouts or the identity of the man who used his debit card is asked to call the Fayetteville Police Department at 910-433-1856 or Crime Stoppers at 910-483-8477.