Court documents reveal new info about missing mom

RALEIGH Laura Ackerson was last seen on the night of Wednesday July 13 - apparently dropping her two sons off at their father's apartment in northwest Raleigh.

On Friday afternoon, Raleigh police released surveillance images of Ackerson recorded the morning of July 13. She was wearing a brown sleeveless blouse and tan Capri pants. She was carrying a black leather bag with white lettering and a brown Liz Claiborne purse.

Police are not revealing the location of the camera footage.

The 27-year-old was supposed to pick them up again the following Friday at a meeting spot in Wilson, but their father - Grant Hayes - said she never showed up. That's according to Hayes' mother.

The next day, a co-worker reported Ackerson missing to Kinston Police when she did not show up for work.

Raleigh police took over the case on Wednesday when Ackerson's car was found at a northwest Raleigh apartment complex where she, Hayes, and their kids lived more than a year ago.

According to a woman who lives at the complex, and does not want to be identified, Hayes currently lives not far from the area.

ABC11 Eyewitness News has not been able to get in contact with Hayes.

Ackerson and Hayes have been involved in a custody battle over their children for more than a year. Hayes was granted primary custody of the children in 2010.

Friends say Ackerson would never willingly abandon her two boys and mysteriously vanish despite allegations of emotional instability detailed in Lenoir County court custody records.

"Laura knows the importance of a mother in her children's lives, and it just wouldn't be in character at all for her to abandon her responsibility as a mother," friend Jo Jackson said.

Sheila Lee, one of Ackerson's neighbors in Kinston, says the mother has always been focused on her children.

"No matter what anyone said about her personality, mood swings, she was all about her boys," Lee said.

Ackerson's brother, Jason Ackerson, told ABC11 earlier this week that he fears the worst.

On Friday, he said he was grateful for media coverage of the case hoping it would generate leads.

"If anyone who might know anything that could help locate Laura please contact the Raleigh Police as soon as possible," Jason Ackerson said in a statement. "Please keep her in your prayers. I would like to say thank you to everyone involved in searching for her."

Meanwhile, Ackerson's friends have not given up hope. They're using Facebook to spread word of the young mother's disappearance.

Click here to visit the Facebook page.

Ackerson's church, Grace Fellowship in Kinston, is holding a prayer vigil every night until she is found.

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