MP of the week: Adrian Poleahla

This week’s featured missing person is Adrian Curtis Poleahla, a Native American man who disappeared from Keams Canyon, Arizona on January 25, 2011. He was supposedly en route to Phoenix. His family, who hadn’t heard from him since August 2010, reported him missing in April 2012.

Poleahla is a talented wood carver and his kachina carvings fetched pretty good prices at galleries. The circumstances of his disappearance are unclear, but I hope he’s still out there. He’d be about 53 today.

18 thoughts on “MP of the week: Adrian Poleahla

  1. marsyao October 21, 2020 / 10:05 am

    Beautiful carvings, I can afford none of these

    • Meaghan October 21, 2020 / 10:07 am

      They are lovely and it’s nice to see art out there for sale by Native artists.

  2. Patrick Kerrigan October 21, 2020 / 2:21 pm

    The question I have is what was he arrested for, that he did time in jail for. Also, was he on probation. I think someone with his background would better known among the artistic community.

    I seem to remember reading about Taos, New Mexico, as some sort of artistic community. Off course it was a number of years ago.

    I would advertise his disappearance in any magazines that cover that kind of art, or stuff related to wood carving.

    I wonder if he is a veteran.

    • marsyao October 21, 2020 / 2:36 pm

      I could find he was charged with DISORDERLY CONDUCT-FIGHTING, ASSAULT-WITH INTENT OR KNOWINGLY CAUSE INJURY TO O and FAILURE TO APPEAR 2ND DEG in March 2008 and his bond was forfeited, maybe relate to this charge ?

  3. Patrick Kerrigan October 21, 2020 / 3:56 pm

    I did a general search online and found references to a gallery in Santa Fe. New Mexico that had some of his stuff.

    Also, I came across and downloaded a copy of “The Drum”, it’s a publication from Lost & Missing in Indian Country. It was founded by Janet Franson, a retired homicide investigator. She worked for NCEMC and also for NamUs.

    The issue had many pictures of Native Americans from all over the country. They are seeking pictures of many others.

    They also have a Facebook page. Another resource for missing Native Americans

  4. Dawn Marie October 21, 2020 / 5:49 pm

    Taos is definitely a place for artists of all kinds. Georgia O’Keeffe kinda made it famous.

    • Patrick Kerrigan October 21, 2020 / 7:53 pm

      Dawn, thanks for backing up my memory. I looked at a road atlas for where he was last seen. That is one huge Indian Reservation. That’s one of the problems in regards to some of these missing Native Americans. They live on large Indian Reservations, with small inexperienced police departments. Also, they don’t have the staff or tools to cover these reservations. Plus, their are jurisdictional issues, because state and other law enforcement authorities can’t enforce laws, or provide support.

  5. Mia October 22, 2020 / 5:14 pm

    Thanks for the most recent super-sized update! Lots of crazy stuff in Utah, huh ?

    • Meaghan October 22, 2020 / 5:16 pm

      Yeah, I found a long list of Utah cases and reached 20 and… didn’t feel like stopping.

      I’m pretty busy this week and next with wedding stuff so I thought I’d better get it in while the getting was good. Or something.

  6. Susan October 23, 2020 / 6:41 pm

    Looks like a skull found in Oregon in 1986 has been identified as belonging to Wanda Ann Herr.

  7. Lukrecija October 27, 2020 / 2:51 pm

    Native Americans are much much smaller community than Black, Hispanic or White, but the numbers of missing persons amongst them are terrifying. Why?

    • Meaghan October 27, 2020 / 2:56 pm

      A lot of reasons. Too many to explain here really. Basically, on top you have poverty, substance abuse and a lack of law enforcement resources in Native communities. Underneath you have a long and tragic history of systematic racism and socio-cultural oppression that continues to this day. I don’t even know where to begin.

      • Lukrecija October 27, 2020 / 2:58 pm

        Thank you, your explanation is very clear, sorry for the stupid question from an European

      • Meaghan October 27, 2020 / 3:00 pm

        It is not a stupid question at all.

    • Mia October 27, 2020 / 10:14 pm

      There is a short documentary called Somebody’s Daughter if you’re interested in learning more.

    • l October 28, 2020 / 11:41 pm

      I think, too, rural settings play a big part vs generally crowded neighborhoods in cities. Comparing to Blacks, for instance, it is nearly a fully opposite situation between the two groups.

  8. Lukrecija October 27, 2020 / 3:15 pm

    I read your updates regularly, and although I do not draw statistics, numbers are obvious to the total stranger. Especially these poor Native women, Jesus we on Balkans had it easy

  9. Patrick Kerrigan October 27, 2020 / 10:28 pm

    It was reported in Missoula, Montana, that the police identified the now deceased Richard William Davis, as the person who abducted, raped and stabbed Siobhan McGuiness (5) to death. She was reported missing on 2/5/1974.

    She was found dead in a culvert near Interstate 90 ramp. A green in color Cadillac was seen on the area. He actually owned a green Cadillac st the time, and may have been passing through the area.

    Also, investigators from Missoula, the Missoula Sheriff’s Office, State of Montana and the FBI were involved in retesting the evidence.

    Also, they found that Davis lived in Bath, New York from 1968 thru 1981. So, they notified the Bath Police. They have reopened the missing person case of Barbara Jean Aleksivich (24), who disappeared walking home from a Elks Club on October 3, 1973.

    Also, Davis was known in the Bath area, for his numerous arrests for child luring. It appears he worked for a dairy an winery.

    Hopefully, her case can be cleared soon. Davis, who died in Arkansas in 2012, was a truck driver.

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