Select It Sunday: Carla Vicentini

Vivi D., a woman from Brazil, asked me to profile fellow Brazilian Carla Vicentini. I was going to make her my MP of the week but decided to do a Select It Sunday case for her instead.

Carla was 22 and living in Newark, New Jersey on a cultural exchange program when she disappeared on February 9, 2006. Vivi D., when asking for me to give the case some publicity, said, “There was not a lot of publicity in her case since she was a student in Brazil, she was there only a month when it happened.” Carla’s Charley Project casefile notes that her case “has been well-covered in the media in Brazil and in Portuguese-language newspapers in New Jersey, but the mainstream American press has given it little attention.”

I haven’t updated Carla’s case since 2009, but I ought to. I found this 2010 article and this 2015 article, both from the Star-Ledger newspaper, with additional details about her case.

She was a very attractive young woman, didn’t speak much English, and was perhaps a bit naive — she grew up in a small farming community in Brazil, and Newark is a pretty rough city. She was last seen leaving a bar with a strange man; my guess is he was either a trafficker or, more likely, a garden-variety predator who wouldn’t take no for an answer, and that he knows what happened to her. The problem is that he has yet to be identified.

Yeah, so I’ve been up all night

Spent all of yesterday evening and all night working on updates — first yesterday’s and then today’s. I posted twenty updates for yesterday and twenty for today — and today it was all new cases.

What I really like is when I can add cases that aren’t on NCMEC or NamUs. Like, sometimes I’ll randomly browse through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement database (which, though quite comprehensive for the state of Florida, is little known and has almost no pictures), and as I find cases I could potentially add I will keep plugging their names into Google and other online databases and archives, cross-referencing wherever I can so I can get photos of these MPs and put them on Charley.

It’s a really satisfying feeling for me to be able to add these previously overlooked cases. And I can hope that by adding them to Charley I can prompt other people to start entering them into NamUs, trying to make matches with UIDs, etc. And even in cases that are already in NamUs, I can often find additional information, photos, etc., that is worth putting out there.

But now my back is killing me and I don’t have any lidocaine patches for it. (En route home from the Cormier funeral in Massachusetts, a bottle of makeup remover came open in the trunk of my car and emptied its contents over everything, including my lidocaine patches, which were ruined. And they cost $8 each!) I think I’m going to gulp down a few Tylenol and maybe rub some Tiger Baum on the stiff muscles and try to go to bed.