Olisa Williams’s dad charged with murder

I’ve been pretty sure Olisa Williams‘s dad killed her for a decade and a half now. Like, since before the Charley Project was ever even a thing. I never expected the case to actually get solved, though.

Well, 39 years after the fact, Isiah Williams has finally been charged with one count of open murder. “Open murder” doesn’t mean he committed the crime in public or anything. It just means they aren’t picking a specific degree of murder, like first- or second-degree murder.

The Michigan Attorney General did a press conference about the case and another, unrelated case, an hour ago, but there doesn’t seem to be a lot that’s publicly available about the case against Isiah. It does say Olisa’s body has not been recovered. I’m not sure there’d be anything left of the poor baby by this point. (The comments at the bottom of the press conference link aren’t about Olisa’s case but about the other one being discussed. Plus some bonus homophobia thrown in.)

I hope the case processes through the system quickly. Isiah is not getting any younger.

MP of the week: Eulace King

This week’s featured missing person is Eulace King, a 29-year-old man who disappeared from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on May 3, 2003. He visited his mom’s house that day and I guess no one was home or something, so he left a note saying he’d been there. Twelve days later his car was found abandoned in Philadelphia. It had been wiped clean of fingerprints, which seems ominous.

Eulace is described as black, 6’0 and 155 pounds, with pierced ears, cataracts in his right eye, and quite a few tattoos, the description of which is detailed in his casefile. I don’t have much on this case but it doesn’t look good, given his uncharacteristic lack of contact for the past 18 years.

I hope everyone is doing well. I’m still pretty depressed and having a hard time getting anything done. Just moving sometimes takes a conscious effort.

So this has just hit the news

A woman has come forward claiming she’s Brittany Williams. She does not have HIV and has never had it. What she does have is DNA which, per the article, has already been tested against Brittany’s sister and confirmed the match.

I first heard about this last week and have been patiently waiting for the news to cover it. Well, now they have.

I await official confirmation from the cops. That’s really all I have to say on this at present. If you’re going to comment please read the article I linked to.

MP of the week: Anthony Breedlove

This week’s featured missing person is Anthony Tyrone Breedlove, a 31-year-old man who disappeared from Mobile, Alabama on April 18, 2006. He is described as black, about 5’11 and 155 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.

And that, unfortunately, is all I can tell you about him, or his disappearance. Even though he didn’t disappear all that long ago by Charley Project standards, I can’t find anything about him or the case in the news, archives, etc. In fact his case has never been updated, even once, since I added it to the database in October 2006. That’s really sad. He must have people who care about him. He must have had a mother. He might have a spouse, or kids.

So I thought I’d put him in the spotlight this week. Maybe someone who knows something will see him.

Francillon Pierre’s case comes to a conclusion

Three-year-old Francillon Pierre was reported missing from North Las Vegas, Nevada on August 2, 1986. His mom and stepmother, Amy Luster and Mahaleel “Lee” Luster, said he disappeared that day from a swap meet.

Thing is, most of the others who were at the swap meet don’t remember seeing him there, and in fact no one outside the family had seen him in a week at least, maybe two weeks. Furthermore, Amy and Lee had already been charged with felony child abuse for severely beating Francillon the previous year. (Why he was returned to their custody I don’t know.)

The case stagnated until 2017, when the police decided to re-examine the evidence they had. In 2019, Amy was charged with her son’s murder. And yesterday the case was settled with a plea bargain, although not a very satisfactory one in my opinion.

Amy (who now goes by Amy Fleming) pleaded no contest to manslaughter. What that means is that she is acknowledging she would probably get convicted if she took the case to trial, but she is still refusing to admit guilt.

And the maximum term she’s facing? Two years. Not even the length of little Francillon’s short life. And Lee? He’s free as far as I know. He hasn’t been charged in this case at all.

I think it’s unlikely the child’s body will ever be recovered. Certainly Amy has no reason to say where she put it. Per this article, Lee said Francillon was in Lake Mead. Which doesn’t help much; Lake Mead is a massive reservoir over 500 feet deep, with 247 square miles of surface water.

MP of the week: Marilyn Dennis

This week’s featured missing person is Marilyn Dennis, who was last seen in Oakland, California in 2011. The CDOJ database gives the date of disappearance as September 27, but NamUs gives the date as August 23. I’m guessing that August 23 was the day Marilyn was last seen, and September 27 was the day she was reported missing. She’s described as black, 5’8 and 250 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She was 43 at the time and was last seen wearing a white t-shirt, blue jeans and white shoes.

Little information is available in this case but it’s worth noting that Marilyn had been in “constant” contact with her daughter, and then the contact suddenly stopped after she disappeared. Which is an indication that something went terribly wrong.

Marilyn will have been missing for ten years this month.

Two long-missing people turn up alive and well

Just another one of those “never give up hope” reminders: Nicole Denise Jackson, a Birmingham, Alabama woman who dropped out of sight in 2018, and Sajid Thungal, a man from Kottyam in the state of Kerala in India who was last heard from in 1974, have both resurfaced alive.

Neither of these people were ever listed on the Charley Project: Sajid because he didn’t disappear on American soil, and I’m not sure Nicole was ever officially listed as missing. They also have something else in common, in that both of them vanished after leaving their home countries.

Nicole stopped contacting her family after moving to Germany to be with a guy she met online. Her family finally hired a private investigator who was able to locate and speak to Nicole’s employer and landlord, and as a result Nicole went to the authorities with her ID and verified that she’s ok. She hasn’t gotten in touch with her family though. I don’t know if there were prior family problems, if she’s in a bad situation, if she’s embarrassed or what. But I’m glad to hear she’s alive and has a job and a place to live, anyway.

Sajid left home to make his fortune in the United Arab Emirates, taking a job managing a group of entertainers who were also Indian nationals. At some point in the ensuing few years he lost touch with his family. Then a plane with the entertainers he’d been managing crashed in Mumbai with the loss of all onboard. His family thought, given the circumstances, that Sajid might have died in the crash as well. However, that wasn’t the case.

The truth was that Sajid hadn’t made his fortune after all and was embarrassed by his poverty, and didn’t want to return home with his tail between his legs. And I suppose the more time passed without him writing his family, the more difficult it became to get started, and he just never did it. Until now. His father had passed away in the intervening years but his mom, wife and brothers are still alive.

When a person vanishes voluntarily like that, and then reappears after years have passed, re-integration into the family unit is often difficult. This Washington Post article from 2019 (which I’m quoted in) talks about several real-life cases of a missing person resurfacing and encountering bumps along the way.

The family members, though delighted that their loved one is back in their lives, may also be very angry at the them for causing them so much pain by not picking up the phone. Often, whatever problems that led the no-longer-missing person to go missing in the first place (be it mental illness, family issues, etc.) are still there when they return, and the person might have picked up some new problems along the way while they were missing. Furthermore, they may have built another life for themselves in the meantime, a life which didn’t include their family, and now they have to find a way to fit their family into that life.

It’s a big adjustment and I recommend individual and family therapy in such cases.

MP of the week: Merlene Hayes

This week’s featured missing person is Merlene C. Hayes, a 55-year-old woman who was last seen in Tallahassee, Florida on April 26, 1994. She went out for a walk that evening, her second of the day, over her daughter’s objections. She never came back, although there were some possible sightings of her in the local area over the coming days and weeks.

Merlene had dropped out of sight once before and turned up alive and well after three days (not sure of the circumstances there), so this time her daughter didn’t report her missing for six. I have to wonder, given those alleged sightings, if reporting Merlene missing sooner would have made a difference.

She’s described as black, 5’7 and 170, with gray hair, brown eyes, and a mole on her nose. She was wearing a wig on the night of her disappearance, as well as a purple flowered shirt, pants and sneakers. She takes medication for depression and could become disoriented if she doesn’t take it regularly. It’s unlikely that she had her medicine with her that night, if she really was only going for a walk.

I have to wonder if perhaps something prevented her from returning home, temporarily but long enough to get her off her meds and disoriented. Or perhaps she had stopped taking her meds prior to her disappearance, and became disoriented during her walk. In any case, according to my theory, she would have wandered around the city for a time not knowing who she was or where she was. That would explain the alleged sightings.

I wish I knew more about what happened with her earlier three-day disappearance — like, did she stop taking her meds, get disoriented and wander off, or did she go off on a spontaneous vacation, or what?

If still alive, she’d be 83 today.

MP of the week: Tyriq Pope

This week’s featured missing person is Tyriq Jaquan Marlon Pope, a 21-year-old man who disappeared from his home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on March 28, 2014. He traveled to Hot Springs, Arkansas after he went missing and was sighted there on May 4, then vanished again. He may have been seen at the Mexican border area in Texas sometime after that. It doesn’t look like there’s been any indication of his whereabouts since that spring, however.

Tyriq’s family said he was using drugs and they were afraid he might harm himself. It is odd that this young man hasn’t resurfaced in seven years. I wonder if he was at all equipped for life in Mexico; did he speak any Spanish, for example? I also wonder about the possibility of a drug overdose.

Tyriq is described as black, 5’5 and 130 pounds. He would be 28 years old today. Both Wisconsin and Arkansas police are investigating the case.

MP of the week: Carola Davenport

This week’s featured missing person is Carola Yvonne Davenport, a 22-year-old woman last seen in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on October 1, 1975. She left all her clothing and her car behind and, most notably, her twin children, who were less than a year old at the time. I don’t know anything about Carola’s situation, but it’s highly unusual for the mother of a tiny baby or babies to just up and leave. Especially without the aforementioned clothes and car.

For whatever reason, she wasn’t reported missing until February 1976, by which time the case was four months’ cold. She’s black, about 5’5 and 125 pounds, with burn scars on her right hand and left arm. She also has a “fish-shaped” birthmark but the location is not noted.

Per NamUs, Carola’s son and her boyfriend at the time are both deceased now, but her daughter — only eleven months old when her mother went missing — is still alive and has submitted DNA. I wish there was more info available about this case.