A bad photo is better than none at all (and other thoughts on recent updates)

Just added Amanda Elise Southern to Charley. The 28-year-old woman disappeared from a nightclub in Catahoula Parish, Louisiana 26 years ago. Unfortunately the only photo I could find of her is absolutely terrible, but what can you do?

Reading the articles about how her ex tried to SELL THEIR KIDS (albeit to their grandparents) after her disappearance, I was struck by how much confidentiality and privacy norms have changed in the past few decades.

I can understand publicizing the kids’ information because for awhile they were missing. (When Amanda’s parents refused to pay for custody of the children, the dad took off with them and was on the lam for over a month.) But then when in the articles talking about how they were found, there was all sorts of information about the children and what they had been through, including the fact that they were believed to have been sexually abused. That kind of thing would not be published in the newspaper today.

I hope the kids are all right. I think Amanda’s parents got custody of them after they were found with their father. It seems super unlikely that she would have just walked away, what with one of the kids having disabilities, her parents living out of state and the children’s father overseas.

Some other random thinking-out-loud stuff:

  • I am not sure that Courtney Corrinna Holden is really white. She is pretty dark-skinned and looks more likely to be Hispanic or maybe Native American. Certainly I’ve seen mistakes in this area before. She is adopted, but one article mentions that she was in touch with her biological brother, so it seems like this is something the police should know for sure. Shrug.
    In any case, her story is incredibly sad. Especially the details about her family nickname “Cinderella” and her son calling his grandmother “mom” and his uncle “dad.” The articles I read said her son even did this before Courtney went missing. I cannot imagine how sad and scared and trapped Courtney must have felt, and I doubt she’s alive today.
  • The guy Melissa Ann Jordon was last seen with is SERIOUSLY bad news. Judges see a lot of crazy stuff and I was stuck by that judge saying Mr. Nesbitt was one of the most violent and dangerous criminals she’d ever encountered in her career. The “felon in possession of a firearm” thing was something he pled down to, by the way; the original incident involved him breaking into his ex-wife’s house and holding her at gunpoint.
    Given how long his sentence is, I wonder if the authorities have ever tried to sit down with him since he was imprisoned, pointed out he doesn’t have much to lose, and asked him to tell what happened to Melissa. I’m sure he knows.
    (Melissa’s NamUs photo, btw, is a high school yearbook photo and almost ten years out of date. That’s why I didn’t use it, as I found a more current pic in Newspapers.)
  • I dunno what I would do without Facebook as a source for recent cases. Okay, I do know what I’d do, I’d put up the cases, but there would be a lot less info. The case of Melissa Rose Ann Garrett is a great example; her daughter posted a bunch of photos of her and more info about her disappearance. Sad story. The daughter seems to suspect Melissa’s boyfriend may have been involved. Anne Marie Hubbert is another case where most of the pictures and some of the other info came from Facebook; Anne’s page and her daughter’s.
  • Shakeeta Young disappeared just a few months after her nineteen-year-old son died. I found a few “RIP” posts on Facebook from some of the young man’s friends but no mention of a cause of death. I wonder if Shakeeta’s disappearance is in some way related. It’s very sad for their family, just bad luck all around there.

MP of the week: Carmen Meirino

This week’s featured missing person is Carmen Ida Meirino, a 49-year-old Philadelphia, Pennsylvania woman who disappeared on December 13, 1997. She is Hispanic, with brown hair, but it was dyed blonde at the time of her disappearance. She was last seen leaving an acquaintance’s home at midnight.

Unfortunately I can’t find anything about her case, not even in the news archives. She would be 71 today.

Another issue with tattoos and why photos are so important

So today I was looking into updating a missing persons case and found some conflicting info on his tattoos. The tattoo in question was on the MP’s arm. One source said it said “RIP PUSHER T”. Then I found another source that claimed it was actually “RIP PASHA”.

I looked further and eventually found an old Instagram account whom the MP had apparently abandoned a few years prior to his disappearance. One of the photos showed him asleep on a sofa with his arm outstretched, and you could see part of the disputed tattoo. I could make out “RIP PUSH CHEA” but the curve of the arm obscured the rest.

I thought the tattoo probably spelled “RIP PUSHER CHEATER”, but I wasn’t sure, so I kept looking. Towards the bottom of the Instagram page there was a photo of the whole tattoo: “RIP PUSHA CHEAA”.

I think what may have happened is that whoever put the information down, in both of the conflicting sources I saw, was just hearing the tattoo described, and not having it spelled out for them. I can see “Pusha Cheaa” being misheard as “Pusher T”, and maybe the second person misheard “Pusher” as “Pasha” and didn’t catch the “Cheaa” part at all. Not sure.

In any case, this is another example that goes to show why photos of tattoos are vitally important to show if at all possible.

Happy New Year, everybody!

I hope you guys have a happy last night of 2019 and a good upcoming year. I never thought I’d still be running the Charley Project, fifteen years down the line, but here I am.

I’ve been doing pretty well, pretty stable. My bipolar disorder etc. has been kept well under control with my current medication regimen, and I haven’t needed a medicine adjustment in over a year. And I’ve got the mysterious nausea and vomiting under control again.

I’ve made some new real-life friends this year as well as new online friends. My dog Kinsey, whom I adopted in 2018, is still with us, happy and healthy, at the ripe age of fifteen.

Michael has gotten much better since his health scare in June. He has been fat all his life, but at the urging of his doctors he went on a diet and stuck to it, and he’s lost over 100 pounds! He’s still fat, but he’s still losing weight. I’m proud of him and we are very happy together.

A few times I’ve mentioned a long term “project” I’m working on for the Charley Project, that I’m afraid I can’t be more specific about at this time, only to say it should be done in the coming year.

A lot of John and Jane Does have been identified this year, including three of the four Bear Brook victims, Malyse Honeychurch, Marie Vaughn and Sarah McWaters; Debra Jackson aka “Orange Socks”; Myoung Hwa Cho and her son Bobby Whitt aka “the Boy Under the Billboard”; and Peggy Johnson aka Racine Jane Doe.

Happy New Year.

MP of the week: Jessica Ortiz

This week’s featured missing person — the last of the decade — in Jessica Eileen Ortiz, a 29-year-old woman who disappeared from Pueblo, Colorado on April 12, 2007. If still alive she’d be 42 today.

It’s not likely Jessica is still alive, though. She had advanced cervical cancer, something she was unaware of when she disappeared. And the man she was last seen with, her longtime boyfriend, Wade Albrow, has a long history of violence. This was probably yet another case of fatal intimate partner violence, something that appears in the Charley Project’s pages a lot.