Taylor Pomaski's Mother and Friend Appeal to Boyfriend for Answers as Search for Missing Texas Woman Continues

Taylor Pomaski, 29, photo (r.-l) before 2021/April 2021)

Taylor Pomaski, 29, was last seen leaving a party in north Harris County, Texas on April 25, police said. On May 9, Pomaski's mother filed a missing person’s report after not hearing from her.

Nothing in Leslie Mandeville's life has been normal since her 29-year-old daughter Taylor Pomaski disappeared.

Pomaski, 29, was last seen leaving a party in north Harris County, Texas on April 25, police said. The party took place at the home she shared with her boyfriend, ex NFL player, Kevin Ware, Jr., loved ones said. On May 9, Pomaski's mother filed a missing person’s report after not hearing from her.

“It was strange that I had not heard from Taylor, especially on Mother’s Day, and it was also her father’s birthday. She never missed that type of stuff," Mandeville told Inside Edition Digital. "Never.” 

On May 11, Mandeville said she again went to authorities about her daughter's disappearance.

On May 19, the case was transferred over to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office Homicide (HCSO) Unit for further investigation.

Mandeville told Inside Edition Digital she is hoping and praying that her daughter will come home.

“I can’t even put into words the fear,” Mandeville said. She began to cry, saying, “The just not knowing is so scary. You know you worry. Is she scared?… Was she scared?…It’s awful.” 

Taylor Pomaski's Life in the Months Leading Up to Her Disappearance

The last time Mandeville said she spoke to her daughter was a few days before she went missing, when Pomaski called her about a macaroni and cheese recipe. 

“I told her I loved her and I told her that I wanted her to come home,” Mandeville said. “[I said] 'Please let us come get you.' She would always answer, ‘No!. This was always the end of the conversation.” 

Mandeville said that while Pomaski had moved into a new apartment in Spring 2019, she often came home to see her mother, father, and her four younger siblings.

“She would play board games with the kids, do makeup and yoga. She loved yoga,” Mandeville said. “We’d cook dinner together. She enjoyed just being with us.”

Mandeville described her oldest child as a free spirit, who was fun-loving and fearless. Mandeville said she and her daughter spoke often. That changed in the Spring of 2020, around the time she believed her daughter to be struggling with addiction, an issue she said Pomaski never admitted. 

”You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge," she said.

“She was very distant. Not available,” Mandeville recalled.

It was also the same time, Mandeville said, her daughter met Kevin Ware, Jr.

Taylor Pomaski's Loved Ones Look to Her Relationship With Her Boyfriend for Answers

Mandeville said she didn’t know about Pomaski's and Ware's relationship until about six months into their dating.

"She was not herself and kind of pulling away,” Mandeville said. “We felt a shift in her life. It wasn’t like it used to be but we were still in contact with her.” 

Pomaski was dating Kevin Ware, Jr., a former American football tight end in the NFL for the Washington Redskins and San Francisco 49ers. 

In November 2020, Mandeville said she spoke with Ware for the first time. Through a series of texts, Ware introduced himself as "Kevin W." 

“I went to the University of Washington and I played pro ball and I can’t wait to tell you my story,” Mandeville said he told her.

In one instance, Mandeville said she, her daughter and Ware planned to have lunch. She was eager to meet Ware and see Pomaski, who she had not seen in person since July 2020, which she said was a long time to go without seeing her daughter. “We would always spend a lot of time together as a family,” Mandeville said. 

Mandeville said before leaving, she looked up the restaurant they planned to meet at and noticed it was closed. 

"I tried calling Taylor,” Mandeville said. “She wasn’t answering. Then I texted Kevin. He said he was working and that he was swamped with meetings and he apologized. I thought it was normal when he told me he was swamped with meetings. I thought, ‘Sure he works.'”

Mandeville said she tried to meet her daughter and her new boyfriend several times between November and January. Each time they made a plan, she says the plans got canceled.

”They always canceled when it was time to be there,” Mandeville said. “My goal was to see my child and I could tell it was going to be through Kevin.”

Mandeville said she began looking into Ware's background and learned he had been convicted of a crime. 

Ware was convicted of possession with intent to deliver/manufacture a controlled substance in connection to a 2018 incident, according to Montgomery County District Court criminal records.

“I was unaware,” Mandeville said. "I believe Taylor is in danger.”

Eric Zuleger dated Pomaski for six years, but even after going their separate ways romantically, he said they kept in touch and were friends. He too believed Pomaski to be in danger.

“The last time I saw her was on April 4. She was gaunt and had bruises and some swelling on her face. It was a big difference the physical transformation from February to April. It was shocking,” he said. 

He said Pomaski claimed she had been hit by Ware. “I told her not to go back there and she said she was going back,” he said. 

On April 5, Zuleger said he dropped off Pomaski at the home she shared with Ware. In the days that followed, Pomaski emailed him several times, Zuleger said, providing copies of some of the correspondence to Inside Edition Digital. 

On April 17, 10 days before Pomaski was last seen, she emailed Zuleger saying she was ready for help, he said. “She knew she needed help. She was ready to go forward,” he said.

Zuleger planned to help her get into rehab. But that never happened. In emails leading up to April 26, Pomaski seemed "pretty frantic," Zuleger said. 

At 6:55 a.m. on April 26, Zuleger said he got an email from Pomaski that said, “I need to talk to you.” 

He said that was the last time he heard from her. 

Pomaski was last seen on April 25 at a party, officials said. The party took place at the home she shared with Ware, 40, Zuleger and Mandeville said to Inside Edition Digital. 

Six days before Pomaski was last seen, Ware was pulled over by deputies from the Montgomery County police department for allegedly speeding. Deputies said that during a search of his vehicle, they found cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana and Xanax.

They also allegedly found an AK-47 and 9mm pistol. Ware was arrested for possession of multiple controlled substances and for unlawful carry of weapons as a felon, according to the Montgomery County Police. 

He was taken to the Montgomery County Jail and released one day after his arrest after posting bail.

According to the county clerk’s office, he does not have an attorney on record and it was unclear if he is being represented by a public defender.

Ware was scheduled for a hearing on May 19 but the court rescheduled his next hearing date for June 17 at 9 a.m., according to the Montgomery County District Clerk's office.

Mandeville said she has been unable to get in touch with her daughter's boyfriend following her disappearance. 

“I texted Kevin on the 9th and he did not respond,” Mandeville told Inside Edition Digital.

What Happened to Taylor Pomaski?

Authorities believe Pomaski, who is described as 5 feet, 2 inches, and weighs between 90 and 110 pounds, with long blonde hair and blue eyes, may be the victim of foul play.

Jim Miller, the executive director of Texas Equusearch, a nonprofit organization that has joined in the search, told Inside Edition Digital that Pomaski disappeared under “very suspicious circumstances" and he "fears the worst.”

In the meantime, all Mandeville and her family members can do is wait.

“She’s out there," Mandeville said through tears. "I just don’t know where.”

As investigators searched for any sign of Pomaski, Mandeville decided she needed to go to the home her daughter shares with Ware. 

She went to Ware’s house on Stallion Brooks Lane, approximately 45 minutes away from her own home in Katy, Texas.

Her goal, she said, was to get her daughter's dog, a terrier named Mauly, but said when she was there, she claims Ware refused to give up the dog. 

“Honestly, he didn’t want to give me Mauly. My daughter is missing and I didn’t want her dog to stay in this house,” she said. “I don’t know why, [but] it didn’t make sense to me. We had to talk him through it.”

Hours went by before Mandeville was able to leave with Mauly.

Two days later, on May 13, Mandeville said Ware texted her to tell her that he was doing all he could and that he was looking for Pomaski.  

“Talk to the detectives," she told Inside Edition Digital of what she would want to tell Ware. "Give them all the information you have. Let’s find Taylor."

Taylor Pomaski's Loved Ones Waits for Answers as Time Continues on Without Any Sign of Their Daughter and Sister

Mandeville said she and her family continue to wait and pray. When her children ask questions she tries to answers as best as she can.

“You can imagine how scared they are,” Mandeville said. "It’s awful.They know Taylor is missing. They know that this is not normal,” said Mandeville, who explained that her kids are not on social media.

“My 17-year-old has a better idea of what is going on. My 12-year-old talks about TP coming home and seeing her dog, Molly. And, my 14-year-old is very concerned. I think he has a grasp of the danger of what is happening.”

Police released an image of Pomaski as the search for her continues. It's a picture that doesn't sit right with Mandeville.  

“That picture haunts me,” Mandeville said. “She was very thin. Very frail. It just breaks my heart.”

Zuleger is focused on getting answers. He said he approached Ware after Pomaski disappeared. He said Ware told him that "Taylor left the party with one of his buddies."

He said he continued pressing Ware for answers, but that he wasn't cooperative. But Zuleger said he won't back down. 

“It’s the right thing to do,” he said. “I miss my friend."

When reached by Inside Edition Digital, Ware said he would later respond to questions provided, but ultimately did not respond to the allegations made against him by Mandeville and Zuleger. 

Deputy Thomas Gilliland, public information officer for the Harris County Sheriff's Office, told Inside Edition Digital that they are still investigating all leads. "Everyone in the house on that night is a person of interest,” Gilliland said. 

“There were a lot of people there and we’ve interviewed, witnesses. We are still investigating and we still need people to come forward and tell us any information they have, as small as it may be,” Gilliland said. 

“Mr. Ware has been contacted. Investigators have spoken to him. I can’t say whether he was cooperative or uncooperative," Gilliland said.

Ware has not been named a suspect or been charged with any crime in connection to the disappearance of Pomaski. 

“She left under suspicious circumstances, foul play is involved, that is why it went from missing persons to homicide," Gilliland said of the investigating department. "The main thing is trying to get people to cooperate and talk. There are still people who haven’t given their statements yet,” he said.

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