Archive for September, 2009

Diana Alagha – reflections four days later

After a few days of thinking, I hope that I can put my thoughts together on the death of Diana Alagha in a semi-reasonable manner.

When I wrote that Luna Fox had been found safe, I noted that she was found because she was treated for diabetes, and that the consequences could have been much more devastating if she had not been brought for treatment. This is the sort of thing I was afraid could happen. The story given was that Diana broke her arm, it was set badly, and she got an infection and died. Her father and his family are looking into this to see if it is really the case. If it is really the case, I wonder if she got any medical treatment at all, or if the bone was just set badly at home.

Many families of the missing say what is most difficult is hearing about accidents and disasters in other places and not knowing if their family member was part of this. But many of those families are ones who believe or suspect their family member met foul play. In family abduction cases, most assume their child is still alive. I usually think the same thing. If I had to guess at cases where the abducted child might be dead, I would first list the cases where child(ren) were abducted after a homicide. Cases with medical issues or a parent with a history of violence would be next. I certainly didn’t think Diana would be one of them. I wouldn’t have predicted when I posted she had been missing for thirteen years she had been dead for the past three.

I may not be able to do anything for Diana now. But if I use her death to work harder at helping other abducted kids come home, there will be fewer endings like this.

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One word I did not want to hear today

I noticed that a missing child, Diana Alagha, was no longer on NCMEC. I sent an e-mail to them, reproduced below.

Do you know if Diana Alagha has been found? She’s not on NCMEC or the California DOJ anymore.


I got back a one word response.


I didn’t want to see this once. I’ve now seen it twice.

I will resolve her case, and put up a new one, but not right now. I need to go off and cry for a bit.

edit: resolved case. Sage Bermudez Rayon has been added to the site.

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The Vanished Childrens’ Alliance is closing

I just visited their home page and it now says that they will close at the end of the month. It’s one of the very first missing childrens’ organizations to exist; it even predates NCMEC. (I’m pretty sure the oldest is Child Find of America.) This is saddening news. Even though there are many more resources available now than in 1979, it was still a useful presence. Obviously this means any cases on the site not on others are going to be California Kids cases if they are eligible. Not something I want to have happen.

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And they still defend the abductor

The amount of times I have now read a comment on the news stories devoted to the recovery of Richard Chekevdia that says “she must have had a very good reason” baffles me. She kept her child inside for two years. In a tiny room. No one would be defending a male abductor. Is it really so ingrained in people that mothers always do best for their children that they will excuse anything they do? And are there more than a handful of kidnapping cases where mom doesn’t say she did it to protect her kid from their evil abusive father?

I suspect the answer is “no.”

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Richard Chekevdia found safe

I have just received word Richard Chekevdia has been found safe. According to this article, he has spent the past two years in a hidden four by twelve room. To give you an idea how small that is, it’s only slightly larger than a two person Smart car. He was not allowed to go outside. I’m used to bad treatment of kids in these cases, but these circumstances still stun me. I have resolved his case. The new case on the site is that of Sean Morrow.

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Luca Principali found

Only a short few days after I write a post about him, Luca Principali is found safe. His mother turned herself in to the police. I’m glad about this. One can only wonder if this is in the trend of the honesty I touched on previously – if you flat out admit you took the kid for spite there’s less justification for keeping them away from the other parent on your part. I wish him and his father the best in re-adjusting.

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