MANATEE COUNTY, FL (WFLA) – The Bradenton Police Department and Manatee County Sheriff’s Office are searching for a missing 11-year-old. According to BPD, the girl hasn’t been seen since August 2014.
On Friday, Oct. 16, the Bradenton Police Department was contacted by the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office to assist in the search of Janiya Thomas, 11.
Janiya was not with her mother, Keishanna Thomas nor was she found at the mother’s house at the Village at Cortez Apartments in Bradenton.
The neighbor Latrece Allen said her son and her niece played with the Thomas’ children, Janiya and her four siblings, and everything seemed normal.
“It’s crazy because we’re trying to figure out what’s going on with this child,” she said. “We’re ready to get out here and search ourselves. Because we’re trying to figure out where is this baby? Someone needs to speak up. If you’ve got the child speak up about it. Take the worrying off of people because there’s a lot of people worrying about this. You know, that’s a baby an innocent child.”
Appearing before Manatee County Juvenile Judge Scott Brownell, Keishanna refused to answer any questions about the well-being of her daughter. She was taken into custody for Contempt of Court. Janiya’s siblings are with the Department of Children and Families, according to Bradenton Police.
Both the Bradenton Police Department and the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office are concerned for the safety of the girl. Officers confirmed that the teen hasn’t been seen for over a year.
Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to call Bradenton Police Detective James Curulla at (941) 747-3011 ext: 2224, or Detective Adrian Meridan at (941) 932-9326. You can also call Crime Stoppers at 1-866-634-8477 (TIPS.)