OLD FORGE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — The search for answers into the mysterious disappearance of a Lackawanna County businessman continues tonight, four years to the day he was last seen alive.
58-year-old Robert Baron vanished on January 25, 2017. As the police investigation continues, his family says they will never stop seeking justice for their father and husband.
Robert Baron owned Ghigiarelli’s on Main Street in Old Forge. A sign has been here since he went missing. The I-Team spoke with Baron’s family, who say they will never give up seeking justice for their loved one.
“I just feel that something is known somewhere. There has to be. We need closure. We need closure. We are desperate for closure,” Maria Baron, Robert’s wife, said.
Maria Baron and her two daughters, Brittany, sitting next to her during our virtual interview, and Nicole, who joined us from her home, say they will never stop searching for their beloved husband and father.
“It just doesn’t go away because this isn’t fair to any of us and it has to be a person that is close to us who is involved in this,” Maria said.
Robert Baron was last seen alive on the night of January 25, 2017. Family members tell the I-Team he dropped off his son in town after leaving the restaurant.
Investigators found blood and a tooth in the restaurant. His car was found a short time later, less than a mile away. Detectives say blood was also found inside the car and there was mud on the tires. But four years later, still no sign of Robert Baron.
“You know I constantly have visions of what went on in there that night even though I don’t truly know. We don’t have cameras unfortunately, but yeah I have horrific and morbid thoughts of what went on in there that night. It’s going to haunt me the rest of my life,” Nicole said.
“It’s the most earthly justice I guess you can get to have these people caught and arrested and they should serve life or worse. My dad should be found and at least he should be found and put to rest wherever he is,” Brittany said.
This family also has some suspects in mind.
“I have someone in mind, however I don’t feel the person would be out to do something like this. Not to take it this far,” Nicole said.
The I-Team asked the family what they think about how the investigation has been handled.
“I don’t feel it’s been handled well at all,” Nicole said.
“Awful to sum it one word. Awful,” Brittany said.
“Just what I was going to say. Awful,” Maria said.
“I don’t think things were followed up immediately. Some things not followed up at all,” Brittany said.
The Lackawanna County District Attorney’s office is leading the investigation, along with Old Forge Police.
The D.A. Mark Powell told the I-Team: “This is not a cold case. It is very active. We are following leads and will get to the truth of what happened to Mr. Baron. We can’t say much more so as not to jeopardize the ongoing investigation. We continue to investigate the violent disappearance and likely homicide of Robert Baron.”
Nicole Baron had this message to the person responsible for her father’s disappearance.
“Have a heart because all darkness comes to light. This isn’t going to go on forever so you are going to get caught eventually,” Nicole said.
A $15,000 dollar reward is being offered for information that leads to an arrest or resolutions of this case. If you have any information you are urged to call the Lackawanna County District Attorney’s office or Old Forge Police.