Seven years ago today

As this article notes, it was seven years ago this day that 14-year-old Georgina DeJesus disappeared while walking home from school in Cleveland, Ohio. It seems to be a probable non-family abduction. There’s a chance that Gina may be still alive, as the police think she might have been forced into prostitution. Teen girls Amanda Berry and Ashley Summers also disappeared from Cleveland (Amanda in 2003, Ashley in 2007) and, last I heard, the cops thought the disappearances could be linked.

I know Gina was a special ed student and barely literate, but I’m not sure how far her level of disability went — whether she had poor intellectual functioning in general, or whether she had a normal IQ and just severe dyslexia, or what. I suppose she can’t have been too badly off, intellectually, since she walked to and from school by herself. Her casefile has a sketch of a possible suspect.

7 thoughts on “Seven years ago today

  1. Tracey Reitterer April 3, 2011 / 1:00 am

    Meaghan, at the bottom of Georgina’s Charley page, it shows photos of her pants, shirt, coat & shoes. Are these replica’s of what she was last seen wearing by witnesses, or her real clothing taken from the sex offenders home who was questioned in her disappearance? Since the article stated, “They did not find any human remains but they did find other evidence”, I wasn’t sure what they meant. If items of hers were found in his home, I wonder why he hasn’t faced any charges in the past 7 years….

    • Meaghan April 3, 2011 / 1:04 am

      Those are replicas as far as I know. I think I’ll edit the casefile to mention that.

  2. maureen April 3, 2011 / 8:49 pm

    She is lovely, apparently physically mature, and trusting. Not a good combination, when ‘someone’ is asking for her by name, while her parents warn her against accepting rides even from family acquaintances. I hope she can be found alive. Was this stranger scouting for easily manipulated girls? I wonder if there are any patterns of ‘special-ed’ children going missing in any particular area…

    • Meaghan April 3, 2011 / 8:56 pm

      Amanda Berry was not a special ed student — in fact she was gifted — but I don’t know about Ashley Summers.

      Gina does seem to be just the kind of girl a pimp or other predator would target.

  3. Diane April 7, 2011 / 5:47 am

    Poor Amanda Berry. She had such a bright future waiting for her and I’m sure she would’ve done any mother proud had she been allowed to live out her life as per normal. I am very suspicious about the phone call made on her cell phone to her mom shortly after she vanished. I imagine they traced which cell phone tower picked up that signal and narrowed the location from which the call was made, but that didn’t help matters any. I really hope that if she was made to be a prostitute that she was forced to stay in the area and that some day, during a police prostitution sting, she’ll get picked up, fingerprinted, the finger prints will match hers, and she’ll be taken into protective custody. And that she will be able to get counseling and pick up the pieces of her shattered life. And mourn for her poor mom.

    BTW, do you know if Amanda’s cell phone is still active? It’s probably ancient as far as cell phones go, but it could potentially still work, as the cell phones from 2003 were really well made and hardly ever fell apart. If so, do you know who would still be paying the cell phone provider charges? I imagine her mom picked that cost up for as long as she was alive. I’m also wondering if Amanda had a Friendster account in 2003 (Friendster being THE social networking site back then) and if all of her Friendster friends were cleared of suspicion.

  4. Missing Persons of America April 12, 2011 / 3:51 pm

    I am beginning to think that the cases classified by the police as runaways are really cases of forced prostitution. I wish none were classified as runaways.

    • Meaghan April 12, 2011 / 6:52 pm

      A lot of kids start off as runaways, only to be ensnared by pimps, drug dealers, etc.

      I read a book about runaways written by a (former) runaway and he estimated that about 1 in every 200 runaways winds up dying on the run. The cops should take it more seriously than they do.

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