A decade later, medical student’s disappearance remains a mystery

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COLUMBUS (WCMH) – He was a young medical student, who many said had everything going for him. Ten years later, Brian Shaffer is still missing.

He disappeared on April 1st, 2006 after a night of drinking in the south campus area.

Although it’s been a decade, police are still looking for answers. Sgt. John Hurst was originally assigned the case and still works on it today.

He says there’s not a day that goes by that he doesn’t wonder what happened to Shaffer.

“My hope is that someday that we do have the answers that everybody is looking for,” says Sgt. Hurst.

He says they’ve scoured over thousands of hours of surveillance video and interviewed hundreds of people.

“Unfortunately everything that we looked at, we weren’t able to find Brian,” say Sgt. Hurst.

He says the unsolved case still weighs heavy on investigators today.

“There’s not a day that goes by we don’t wonder what happened,” says Sgt. Hurst. “Brian was living the American dream had everything in the world going for him.”

A more recent case on the death and disappearance of 26-year-old Joey LaBute Jr., is also stirring in Sgt. Hurst’s mind.

“We’ve got another family out there who’s going through what the Shaffer’s went through,” says Sgt. Hurst.

He says the news of finding LaBute’s body in the Scioto River earlier this week, coupled with his experience on the Shaffer case has left him sleepless.

“Listening to it brought back a lot of memories about we had to do and what we went through… how agonizing this type of situation is for the family members,” says Sgt. Hurst.

He says they still follow up on tips or leads on the Brian Shaffer case today. The last one they had was about 8 months ago.

He still encourages anyone with information to call CrimeStoppers.

Shaffer has never been found. There have been many theories on what happened to him including suicide, foul play or that he just walked away from his life. Sgt. Hurst says all are possible, but none have been proven.

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