A four-year-old Baton Rouge boy remained missing on Monday night as law enforcement ramped up their efforts to include about 100 officers, but no new leads about the whereabouts of the boy developed.
Jassiah Clark was last seen between 4 and 6 p.m. on Saturday near his home on Robertson Avenue, and police were notified by 11 p.m., said Sgt. Mary Ann Godawa, a BRPD spokeswoman.
The FBI, EBR Sheriff’s Office, State Police, the Attorney General’s Office and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children have since all joined the search in some capacity, she added.
“We are very concerned,” Godawa said, adding, “Time is very valuable.”
On Monday afternoon, police and unmarked cars lined Robertson Avenue where the boy’s family lives, as groups of officers spoke with children and adults. They were joined by more than 20 members of Jassiah’s extended family, who had gathered at his house and the surrounding streets to look for him, and also stand together in the family’s driveway and await more news.
“I’m desperate,” said Jassiah’s aunt Lesly Reed as police cars continued to drive by. “I need my nephew here.”
Reed has spoken to several neighbors since her nephew went missing, but no one has helped her clarify what happened. In the meantime, the boy’s absence has affected the family tremendously.
“It’s life changing,” Reed said. “This isn’t normal. We should be preparing for Christmas. We should be doing some last minute Christmas shopping. We don’t even know if we’re going to have Christmas with all this.”
The boy’s disappearance is the second recent tragedy for his family. About a month ago and just a few days before Thanksgiving, Jassiah’s uncle and his mother’s boyfriend killed each other while they were drunk and arguing.
Lester Reed, 35, stabbed the 19-year-old Tevin Crump, who then shot Reed in the front yard of a Washington Court home where they were living. Jassiah and his 10-year-old brother looked on and saw the events unfold from feet away. In the weeks since and right up to his disappearance, Jassiah has cried almost every day and said that he misses his uncle, according to his mother, Brittni Clark, in an interview on Sunday night.
“It reopened everything back up again,” said Chapreca Harris, Lester Reed’s former girlfriend of 10 years who remains close to the family. “The family had to come together for that. Now we’ve had to come together for Jassiah. We just need a break.”
Ruby Chambers, who is Lester Reed’s mother and Jassiah’s grandmother, added: “This seems like a nightmare to me. It ain’t no great feeling.”