San Diego

Billboard Put Up For Missing Ret. Army Captain

For the next month, drivers and pedestrians will see a billboard on the corner of Mercury Street and Clairemont Mesa Boulevard in Kearny Mesa with a simple message: If you've seen Julia Jacobson, call the San Diego Police. 

The retired U.S. Army Captain has been missing since Sept. 2. She was last heard from around 9:30 p.m. when she sent a text message to a friend saying she was traveling from Big Bear, California to Palm Springs. 

A Facebook group set up by family and friends called "Julia Jacobson Missing" has 5,200 followers. 

In person, Julia was last seen in her company car at the corporate offices of 7-Eleven on Aero Drive in Kearny Mesa. She works in corporate real estate.

Surveillance video shows she was in Ontario, California later that day. 

On Sept. 7, investigators found Julia's company car abandoned on Monroe Avenue in University Heights, east of Texas Street, a half-mile away from her home. 

Family members told NBC 7 the car was found with the keys still in the ignition and the windows rolled down. Julia’s black handbag was found inside, unzipped and with hardly anything in it.

She was with her dog, a wheaten terrier named Boogie, when she vanished. The same dog in the photo with her on the billboard. 

Julia's brother, Jon Jacobson, lives in North Dakota and is a private investigator who has 20 years experience in criminal cases. 

Jon said it is extremely out of character for Julia to abruptly lose contact with her family – especially their nearly 80-year-old father, whom she calls every single day.

Those daily calls to her dad stopped the day before she vanished.

Jon said he last spoke with Julia about two weeks ago, when she called to get his advice on a new job she had been offered in San Antonio, Texas. Julia had decided to accept the position and was thrilled to be moving there, where her best friend from childhood lives.

Jon said his sister was preparing for her big move and excited for a fresh start. He said she had recently been through a bitter divorce.

Jon said he was told told by police that Julia’s ex-husband met up with her on the morning of Sept. 2. By 8 p.m. that day, she was in Ontario, California, about 120 miles north of San Diego County.

“And we don’t know what else has happened,” he said.

SDPD Lt. Mike Holden said investigators were able to confirm Julia was in Ontario on the night of Sept. 2 through surveillance video.

Lt. Holden said detectives have spoken with Julia's ex-husband; he has been cooperative. At this point, he is not suspected by SDPD in her disappearance.

Last month, Julia’s loved ones, Jon and members of the community gathered at Garfield Elementary School on Oregon Street to search for Julia. Volunteers canvassed neighborhoods around her Idaho Street home, posting missing person flyers.

Julia's friends said Friday the billboard with her picture will be up for a month. It will change locations after a week for more visability. 

They added digital billboards with a similar ad are going up in Riverside County. 

"The best thing community members can do right now is download the flyer from the website and make 10 copies, it won’t cost much and as they go about their daily lives post flyers at various businesses," said a friend of the family and admin of Julia's support Facebook Page. "Somebody saw something and we just need to find that person." 

Jon said he’s hopeful that, soon, his family will have answers. For now, he knows one thing: his sister is a fighter.

“I know she’s incredibly strong. She’s a Bosnian War veteran, she’s an Iraqi War veteran. She’s the classic strong, independent woman,” he said. “She’s a very powerful woman, and I know she wouldn’t go down without a fight, so to speak.”

Jacobson is described as 5-foot-7 and about 150 pounds. She has a tattoo on her hip of a crab holding a flower. There is no information on what she was wearing when she went missing.

Anyone with information on Julia’s whereabouts can contact the SDPD’s Missing Persons Unit at (619) 619-531-2277 or SDPD’s Communications Division at (619) 531-2000, and reference case #17-034427.

A GoFundMe page has been set up by the family to raise money for continued ads online and on billboards. If you want to donate click here

Contact Us