Archive for Endangered Missing

For the Lost Newsletter

I have started a missing persons’ newsletter at Substack. Please share and subscribe; I update every Monday evening.

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Adam Elkadhiri found safe and Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj found deceased

I have just received word from a blog commenter that Adam Elkadhiri has been found safe and reunited with hus mother. I wish them both the best. I have also seen numerous articles that state Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj has been found deceased in New Mexico. Apparently he died from an uncontrolled seizure, having not taken medication for his condition. He has been added as a victim of family abduction. The new cases on the site are those of Brianna Acevedo and Isabella Mobley. Also, Anita Qvist, Patricia Thomas-Wardell, and James Zapolski have been added to the California Kids pages.

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Shannon Dedrick found safe

The missing infant Shannon Dedrick, whom I wrote about before due to her bizarre connection to the disappearance of Paul Baker, has been found safe. She was apparently under the bed of Paul’s stepmother (Susan Baker), in a box. The stepmother is being charged along with the mother of Shannon. I’m still not sure the mother was fully involved – both of Shannon’s parents are developmentally disabled, and it’s possible that the mother was hoodwinked in some way. After all, kidnapping is a far more serious charge than taking an abandonded baby or buying an infant.

I hope that there is some new effort to locate the remains of Paul with this new publicity.

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A truly bizarre missing persons connection

Very recently, a seven month old girl named Shannon Dedrick went missing from her Chipley, Florida home. A person of interest has been named, Susan Baker. And she is a suspect in the presumed homicide of her stepson, Paul Baker, who went missing in 1987. She sent a e-mail to several people claiming Shannon was in danger from her parents. (They are apparently both developmentally delayed.)

I don’t know if Susan Baker is being looked at because of Paul’s disappearance, or for some other reason, but it makes one of the strangest connections between missing persons cases I’ve seen.

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The inscrutable missing

This is a term I use, for lack of a better one, to describe the missing with no details. Sometimes it is over many years. Typically these cases are ones that I get a poster notice from NCMEC from and it merely says where the person was last seen. Occasionally it’s not even that – the poster for Bob Boyes has no text on it at all. There has to be more than what’s on the poster; the information about a scar and what he was last wearing aren’t on there but wound up on the Doe Network and the Charley Project anyway. Searches of news archives have yielded nothing about him. Aleacia Stancil is another. I’m fairly certain an infant can’t just vanish with no information. But I’ve found none. A few cases – Princess Perez, Rene Romero, and Skyla Marburger are some – have no details on the poster, but it’s still easy to find some information on what happened to them. (All three are probably dead: Princess and Rene killed by a parent, Skyla supposedly of natural causes.) Sometimes the poster gives a bit of information that is no help – Robert Bowling vanished with his sister, who has since been found. But who took them in the first place? Was she found alive or deceased? Jose Fuentes Pereira was only seven when he was last seen. One online source mentions he might be in New York, but he’s far too young to have left on his own. Could he be with a relative? He’s listed on the California Missing Persons Registry as a runaway, but that could be a clerical error. It’s not limited to very old cases, either. Sergio Rivera was only ten. Same issue; really too young to run away but no other details given to help.

These are not teenagers who may have run away; they are children under the age of ten. The information might be out there but not online, as in the case of the Matory sisters, Yolanda Williams, and Sir-Kristopher Marshall. Only Sir-Kristopher has family looking for him, and the circumstances were sketchy until I called the investigating department and asked what was going on. Unfortunately, I can’t do that in every single case I wonder about. Hopefully an article or other information will pop up on the case as it often does.

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Adam Hermann and lessons learned

I will admit I have much to learn in regards to missing persons. My basic beliefs have not changed. I think it is a serious problem, that even though most missing children are runaways and family abductions does not mean that they are unimportant, and both those issues have needs that need to be addressed. However, every now and then a case comes along and tells me to assume nothing. It will shake up my perceptions of other cases.

Ricky Holland is one of them. I am still not sure why I believed his parents’ story of running away. He was a seven year old child and even if he did run away from home it was a sign of far more serious trouble than what I would consider in an adolescent. It took me months to start to question the story. And of course it was a lie. He had been abused and killed, and the former at least should have been obvious to me right away. I may not have directly known him but I know through that assumption I indirectly was one who failed him.

Shasta Groene is the other. In some ways this is a reversal of the above case because I took nothing at face value and jumped to the conclusion she and her brother were dead, killed by the intruder. I will give myself a little credit for not suspecting a family member and thinking it was a stranger or a friend of the family, but no more. Like with Ricky, I failed. She was not dead; is not dead, and the only reason her brother is is because we all assumed they were. The motto of our site is “If you look for a person, you may find a body. But if you look for a body, you may miss a person.” I had used that phrase for almost two years and it took this case to brutally remind me I was not always operating under it.

If there is no real evidence a child was killed, I don’t presume it for the most part. I never rule it out but with no credible evidence I can’t really consider it either. Evidence, however can be in non-physical forms. Like in the classic battered child syndrome, evidence of past abuse can make me assume the child was killed, even if no actual physical evidence exists. Michelle Pulsifer, for example. And I now add Adam Hermann to the list. All reports say siblings say he was abused. He wasn’t reported missing for ten years. Just like Michelle. The parents claimed he ran away but not only couldn’t be bothered to try to locate him if that were indeed true they told others the state took him. And if it had only been a few days or weeks I would still reach that conclusion mostly because of his past abuse.

Ricky and Shasta both tell me in very different ways to never assume too much. And I think about them and Adam. I may not be able to do anything but advocate for finding his remains and charging his parents, but at least I know better now than to think otherwise.

Rest in peace, Adam. You deserved far better than what was given you.

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