Although African-Americans make up just 13 percent of the U.S. population, we account for 33 percent of the missing in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s database. Cases involving African-Americans also tend to receive less media coverage than missing Whites, with missing men of color getting even less attention.
NewsOne has partnered with the Black and Missing Foundation to focus on the crisis of missing African-Americans.
To be a part of the solution, NewsOne will profile missing persons and provide tips about how to keep your loved ones safe and what to do if someone goes missing.
Case Type: Endangered
Date of Birth: March 16, 2006
Missing Date: July 17, 2016
Age Now: 10
Missing City: Buckeye
Missing State: Arizona
Case Number: NCMEC1272890
Hair Color: Black
Hair Length: Short
Eye Color: Brown
Wear Glasses or Contacts: No
Records released by police show missing 10-year-old Arizona boy Jesse Wilson has left his home in the middle of the night before.
According to police body camera video released by the Buckeye, Arizona Police Department, a neighbor called police in April when he found Jesse on his property in the early morning hours.
Asked by police why he was out of his home and wearing his school uniform, Jesse responded: “I used to go to school in the middle of the night.”
Police contacted Jesse’s mother, who said she had just discovered the boy had left her home through the window. After an investigation, Jesse was returned to his mother. Police determined there was no need to contact child welfare authorities.
Jesse was last seen in the bedroom of his home at 239th Avenue and Twilight Trail at approximately 9:30 p.m. on July 17. His mother and police believe he slipped out of the window of his bedroom, which was apparently not uncommon for the boy.
Prior to moving to Buckeye, Jesse lived with his family in Avondale. ABC 15 reported that police were also called to the home to investigate allegations of child abuse. Police found two of the children strapped to the bed. Jesse’s mother Crystal Wilson told police that the straps were used to keep the children from escaping the home, which they had done before.
Some of Wilson’s Avondale neighbors also told ABC 15 that Jesse and his siblings would sometimes knock on their doors asking for snacks. After an investigation, police determined that allegations the children were not well fed were unfounded and that Wilson’s explanation for the straps made sense. Police were only called to the home once.
Buckeye Police Sgt. Jason Weeks told NewsOne that his department “did not receive any” calls regarding neglect at Wilson’s home.
Buckeye Police Chief Larry Hall has said finding Jesse is his department’s “number one priority” and that “stopping is not an option.” Police are still in the middle of a “wide-scale search operation” in the hopes of finding the child.
“The community has done a great job by coming together and helping with searches as well as providing tips,” Hall said.
The FBI is involved in the case and police have yet to rule out foul play. Jesse’s mother is “cooperating with law enforcement,” Hall added.
But in what would be a “worse case” scenario, Hall said the search for Jesse could be a “recovery operation.” That’s why police and not volunteers are now conducting all search efforts.
But police have not given up hope.
“Jesse could be found alive and safe,” Hall said.
Jesse was last seen wearing a red shirt, black socks, shorts, and black shoes. Anyone with information about the disappearance of Jesse Wilson may contact Buckeye Police at (623) 349-6411 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anyone with information may also contact the Black and Missing Foundation’s confidential Tip Line.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty