Essex County Acting Prosecutor Theodore Stephens II also pointed at the importance of continuing to talk about this case so that it stays in the public eye.
A teenager in New Jersey walked to a local deli last month but never returned home. During a press conference on Friday, officials revealed that 14-year-old Jashyah Moore went out to visit a neighborhood deli that was close to her home in East Orange. Surveillance footage from the deli showed a man paying for Moore's items on the morning of October 14. However, the two did not leave together, explained Police Chief Phyllis Bindi. It's been more than 20 days since the teen has been missing and her family is pleading for people to come forward if they have any information regarding the young girl's whereabouts.
SEARCH FOR JASHYAH: Some clearer photos of 14 y/o Jashyah Moore given to me by her mother. Pls note she no longer has a nose ring. Last seen wearing a black jacket, boots + khakis. More in our piece at 11p @CBSNewYork pic.twitter.com/SpCdOdE5lr— Lisa Rozner (@LisaRoznerTV) November 6, 2021
"Jashyah is a smart girl, I can't reiterate that enough," shared the 14-year-old mother Jamie Moore. "She would not stay out, she would not go out, go off with anyone." Understandably, her mother is distressed wondering what may have happened to her daughter. "I cannot imagine what she might be going through from just being away from us this long, being away from her family that loves her very much," she added. Moore has been described as a homebody who loves cooking and playing video games. Jamie added that her missing daughter, who is 5 feet, 5 inches tall, is best friends with her 3-year-old brother as they would spend most of their time together playing. Moore, who weighs 15 pounds, was last seen wearing black boots, khakis, and a black jacket.
"If you see Jashyah, please call the police. I really in my heart don’t believe Jashyah is able to just come to me because she would never stay away from her family like this … I’m keeping all my faith in God that my baby is going to return to me unharmed," requested her mother according to CBS. The Essex County Sheriff's office, which has been working with East Orange Police, is now offering an increased $15,000 reward for any information that would lead authorities to Jashyah's location and her safe return.
According to CNN, both the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the New Jersey State Police are currently assisting with the case. As for the man who paid for Moore's stuff at the deli, he has been cooperating with the police completely. Bindi said that there is no indication of foul play from the man's end at the moment. According to the missing person's report, the family suspects that her stepfather, who is a police officer, may be involved in her disappearance.
BREAKING: Reward now increased to $15,000 for info leading investigators to 14-Year-Old Jashyah Moore of East Orange #Nj who is missing @FBI @FBINewark @EssexSheriff @ECPONJ1 @CBSNewYork pic.twitter.com/SU8eIsqnvu— Lisa Rozner (@LisaRoznerTV) November 6, 2021
City officials believe that a community effort could bring the young girl home as they have urged the public for any help that they can provide. Essex County Acting Prosecutor Theodore Stephens II also pointed at the importance of continuing to talk about this case so that it stays in the public eye. "This reminds us that the lives of little Black and little brown girls is just as important as everybody else's lives," said Stephens. "And we know that Gabby Petito, which is a very, very notorious case that was constantly in the news did yield results and information. So we are hoping that today's effort will also bring some information so we can find young Jashyah," he added. Anyone with information is urged to call the police at 877-847-7432 or 973-266-5041.
The heartbreaking reality of our world is that people mostly care about a person's well-being based on the color of their skin. For years now, the missing cases of White women have been given more focus and urgency than that of people of color at disproportional rates. Shockingly, Black people make up for 35% of missing person reports however only 13% of the country's population, per the 2020 FBI data. Meanwhile, White people make up for 54% of missing person reports and a whopping 76% of the US population.
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