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5 things we know about missing CDC researcher Timothy Cunningham

Update: Missing CDC researcher identified as body found in Chattahoochee River

It has been 16 days since anyone has seen or heard from Timothy Cunningham. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention epidemiologist left work Feb. 12, telling colleagues he didn’t feel well. Investigators believe Cunningham, 35, returned that morning to his northwest Atlanta home. But there’s still no sign of him, and police admittedly are puzzled by Cunningham’s disappearance. 

Here’s what we know so far:

1. Cunningham was upset he hadn’t gotten a promotion. The goal-oriented Morehouse College and Harvard University graduate told family and friends he believed he had earned a promotion within the CDC’s chronic disease section, according to Atlanta police. On Feb. 5, Cunningham learned he had not gotten the new title. 

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2. He called out of work ill for two days. Three days after being told he did not get the promotion, Cunningham missed two days of work, a Thursday and Friday, due to illness, the CDC told police. 

3. Cunningham returned to work Feb. 12. It was a Monday morning, and after arriving at the CDC, Cunningham’s supervisor spoke with him about why he had not gotten the promotion, according to police. Around 9 a.m., Cunningham tells colleagues he again isn’t feeling well and leaves work. He places a phone call to his mother in Maryland, but she misses the call. 

4. All of his belongings are found in his home. Cunningham’s parents made the drive from Maryland to Atlanta, where they found their youngest son’s belongings. Tia-Juana Cunningham reported her son missing on Feb. 14. Inside Tim’s home are his keys, wallet, cell phone, vehicle and his beloved dog, Mr. Bojangles. Two upstairs windows in his home are open, but the house is otherwise secured. 

5. An intriguing tip.  Before Cunningham’s disappearance, he told a neighbor to have his wife delete his number from her phone

Cunningham’s family has partnered with Crime Stoppers of Greater Atlanta to offer a $10,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and indictment in this case. Information can be submitted anonymously to the Crime Stoppers Atlanta tip line at 404-577-TIPS (8477) or online at www.crimestoppersatlanta.org. 

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