PANAMA CITY BEACH, Florida – Authorities in Panama City Beach, Florida have ramped up their search for a Rice University student who vanished Monday night.
Reny Jose and about 20 friends rented a beach house in Panama City Beach to celebrate Spring Break. The friends say they last saw Jose Monday evening when he left alone to go for a walk.
They realized the next morning that he never came back and called the sheriff.
Deputies later found Jose’s clothes and cell phone in a garbage can behind the house. His wallet, with ID and credit cards, was found inside the rental home.
Deputies from the Bay County Sheriff’s Office have been searching on foot and by air since Tuesday when the 21-year-old was reported missing.
On Thursday, they added help from the Joint Agency in-Water Strike (JAWS) team. The dive team – made up of several area agencies – is searching the gulf waters near the rental home where Jose was last seen.
Jose’s parents are also in Panama Beach City to help search for any trace of their son.
Jose is a senior majoring in mechanical engineering in the Martel College.
Back in Houston, Rice officials sent an emergency email to staff and students to let them know about Jose.
If you have any information about Jose that might be helpful in the search, please contact the Rice University Police Department at 713-348-6000.