On a completely unrelated note: I was browsing through my mother’s library (former guest room) today and saw a familiar-looking garment hanging in the closet. It was a gorgeous dress Mom got me when I was about twelve. It is actually the kind of dress you could marry in — cream satin, with elaborate lace braid and trimmings and gauze and pearl beads etc. It is truly a sight to behold.
And I tried it on and IT STILL FITS. A few inches shorter than it had been, perhaps (knee-length now), but it zips all the way up and I can move without even worrying about busting the seams. It fits like I bought it yesterday.
No wonder people keep mistaking me for a high school freshman.
Three new links, three resolved cases, thirteen new cases, seventeen updated cases. Most I ever posted in one day. I’ve truly outdone myself.
But I have not made much of a dent in the huge pile of cases to write and updates to add.
Haleigh Cummings and Adji Desir were both children about the same age (she was five, he was six) who disappeared from southern Florida early this year. Adji disappeared while playing outside on January 10. Haleigh disappeared from her bedroom in the middle of the night on February 9. Haleigh’s case has got a ton of publicity, Adji’s very little.
A lot of people, bloggers etc., are saying it has to do with race. Haleigh was a blonde, blue-eyed white girl. Adji was a black, Haitian boy. An Amber Alert was issued in Haleigh’s case, but not in Adji’s, even though in neither instance did the police have any hard evidence that they were abducted. Some people are saying the only difference is that Adji was black. I don’t think so, though. There are in fact significant differences between the cases which go a long way towards explaining why Haleigh got an Amber and more publicity.
To begin with, Haleigh disappeared from her bed in the middle of the night. Adji disappeared during the daylight hours as he played outside. A kid who vanishes from her bed overnight is much more likely to have been abducted than a kid who disappears during the day while outside. Couple that with the fact that Adji is pretty seriously mentally disabled, and I can see why the police thought there was a good chance he just wandered off. (What I want to know is why his grandmother let him play outside alone, given that he has the mental capacity of a two-year-old and can’t talk. Oh well. Too late to do anything about that now.)
Adji lived in a primarily Haitian community. Both his parents are Haitian and his dad actually lives in Haiti. I think that would be a barrier as far as press attention is concerned. If Adji’s loved ones didn’t speak English well, or if they were simply uncomfortable with American reporters prying into their lives, there’s going to be less information about him, and thus, less articles. The Cummings family has been very open to the press — maybe a bit too much so, even, as they seem to use the news against one another. Also, their soap-operaish antics (custody battle and nasty allegations between Haleigh’s parents, Dad’s underage girlfriend, Dad putting a decapitated rat in his brother-in-law’s mailbox) make for interesting reading, though they detract from Haleigh herself.
So you see it’s not just skin color.
The police now believe Haleigh Cummings was kidnapped by someone she knew, according to this Orlando Sentinel article. They haven’t ruled out her father’s girlfriend, Misty Croslin, as a suspect and they think she may be withholding information. Misty, who was only seventeen years old, was watching Haleigh and her brother the night the little girl disappeared. Both the girl’s parents have been ruled out as suspects though. Her dad was working and her mom was living in Georgia.
I think Haleigh is probably dead, but beyond that I haven’t a clue what happened to her. Her parents sound like they tried to do the best they could for their kids, which doesn’t make them good parents, but I don’t believe they harmed her. I don’t know about Misty. I suppose time will tell.
Palatka Daily News
First Coast News
The Gainesville Sun