Target located: Missing Fluvanna man's car found in store lot

The vehicle missing Fluvanna County man Robert Lee Hourihan was last seen driving when he disappeared on April 8 has been located in a Target parking lot in La Plata, Maryland. The missing man's whereabouts, however, remain unknown, leaving his family as confused and fearful as they were when he first vanished.

Thirty miles southeast of Washington, D.C. and nearly 140 miles from Charlottesville, La Plata, a town of less than 9,000 residents in southern Maryland, is not exactly a hub, and Hourihan's parent's express confusion over the discovery.

"How did it get way up there?" asks his mother, Melinda Hourihan, informed by a reporter of the white 1994 Chevy Cavalier's location.

Lt. David Wells of the Fluvanna County Sheriff's Office, leading the investigation, declines to offer details of the car's recovery or any other developments in the investigation.

As previously reported in the Hook, Hourihan kissed his wife of 14 years goodbye on Friday morning, April 8, then left for his job as an electrician in Richmond. Multiple witnesses reported seeing the car, which bears the license plate TARA MAE, sometime around 7:40am on Shannon Hill Road and again around 5pm exiting I-64 onto Fifth Street in Charlottesville around 5pm, although it is not known whether he was driving at that time.

While Hourihan's parents express hope that evidence in the car will help bring their son home, they fear the worst.

"We're preparing ourselves for something happened where he got killed or something," says Mrs. Hourihan, recalling her son as a devoted family man. "This isn't Robby," she says. "He doesn't do this kind of stuff."

Anyone with information regarding the disappearance or current location of Robert Lee Hourihan should contact Lt. David Wells of the Fluvanna County Sheriff's Office at 434-589-8211. A $5,000 reward for information concerning Hourihan's location is offered.

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