Shaniece Harris should have celebrated her 36th birthday with friends and family this week. Instead, they are still searching for answers to her disappearance 5 years after she vanished after leaving a friend's home.
Two days after Shaniece was last seen, her car was discovered in a wooded area near Thompson, New York. What happened to Shaniece?
Ask Shaniece Harris’ friends and family to describe her and you’ll hear words like warm, loving, and a bit of a goofball—with a natural gift for making people laugh. Her sister describes her as having a pure heart often helping elderly women with groceries, but also loved that Shaniece knew how to get the party started. Shaniece preferred to hang out at home and was especially close with her family. Always checking in with her sisters to tell them that she loved them; Shaniece’s favorite saying was ‘F.O.E.’ family over everything. So when her family hadn’t heard from her after she left to meet a friend they knew something wasn’t right.
The day Shaniece went missing
Shaniece was last seen leaving her home around 8:20 pm to visit a friend on May 29, 2017. Her sister recalls talking to her less than an hour before she left that evening. Shaniece called her girlfriend via Facetime before midnight at the friend's home. A friend reported that Shaniece left their Rock Hill, New York home with someone they didn’t know.
By 9:30 am the next morning, Shaniece was not home which prompted Shaniece’s girlfriend to reach out to Shaniece’s sister, Tameka. Additionally, Shaniece had failed to call her mother who was traveling to Florida—also a red flag, as Shaniece would always call to check on her mother after her flights.
The search for Shaniece
Shaniece’s sister, Tameka, immediately went to the Monticello Police Department to report her sister missing; however, she was told she needed to wait 24 hours to file a report. Tameka obliged, but when she returned the next day she received conflicting information and was asked why she didn’t come in sooner.
Two days after her initial disappearance, Shaniece’s dark gray four-door Volkswagen Jetta was discovered along South Woods Drive in the Town of Thompson, NY, less than 5 miles from where she was last seen. Multiple searches were executed in the area where her car was found, but no sign of Shaniece. Unfortunately, there is very limited information about Shaniece’s case. But no shortage of questions.
Who did Shaniece leave her friend’s home with? Why was her sister told to wait to report her missing, when, according to the NYPD there is no waiting period? Did waiting longer to report her missing impact the search?
Where the case stands today
Shaniece Harris is still missing. Her family is active in their efforts to find Shaniece, they have put up billboards near the area where she was last seen, and on August 31, 2019, her family participated in an event to help raise awareness for missing people within the 845 area code. Shaniece’s mother still pays for her cell phone ‘just in case she calls.’ she shared in a 2019 interview. The FBI recently increased the to $10,000 for information relating to Shaniece’s disappearance. If you do have information please contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation's New York Office at (212) 384-1000 or the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office's Confidential Tip Line at (845) 807-0158.
She is described as a biracial woman with brown hair, brown eyes, 5’8'' tall and weighs between 260-300lbs. She has rosary beads in her hair, both of her ears are pierced and she wears prescription Versace eyeglasses. She has multiple tattoos. The night she went missing she was wearing a black and gray hooded sweatshirt with four pockets, black sweatpants, and black Nike Air Max sneakers.