HOPE MILLS, N.C. (WNCN) — It’s day two in the search for a Hope Mills man who disappeared decades ago from the area.

Cumberland County Sheriff’s Investigators renewed their search this week, after receiving a credible tip.

Kent Jacobs, 42, was last seen walking in the Colonial Heights neighborhood 21 years ago. However, no one in the Hope Mills community seems to know where he went.

People who knew Jacobs said he was mentally challenged and frequented a house on Jackson Street. The house no longer exists on the vacant property that Cumberland County Investigators are now searching.

On Tuesday, a septic tank company was on scene of the search. CBS 17 crews were told the company was called to drain the septic tank on the property.

“It’s going to take a couple of days to get everything or search the areas we need to search to make sure that we do a thorough search,” Sgt. Mickey Locklear with the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office said.

Jacobs’ niece sent CBS 17 this statement on behalf of the family.

“We appreciate the outpouring of community support for our family. We are processing the events of the last few days individually and collectively.

Anytime new developments arise in this case, our family is taken back to one of the worst days of our lives, March 10, 2002. We have grieved every day since, and the complexity of the circumstances will never be understandable to us. But we still search and yearn to find Kent – our beloved son, brother, uncle and friend. 

We hope to share more at the conclusion of the search and we are grateful for the commitment of CCSO to diligently completing this process. We also thank the community for remembering Kent’s story and caring so deeply about its resolution. We still need and appreciate your prayers.”