Aniah Blanchard kidnapping, Suspect in Blanchard’s disappearance charged

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Aniah Blanchard kidnapping, Suspect in Blanchard’s disappearance charged.

A Montgomery man with a history of arrests for violent crimes has been charged with kidnapping in the disappearance of Aniah Blanchard and is sought by police.

Ibraheem Yazeed, 30, has been charged with first-degree kidnapping in Blanchard’s disappearance. The U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force, along with other agencies, are actively searching for Yazeed. Authorities said Thursday that evidence shows Yazeed was at the same location where Blanchard was last seen and is believed to have taken Blanchard against her will. Investigators are looking into the possibility Blanchard was kidnapped during a carjacking.

Yazeed and several others were arrested earlier this year on charges of attempted murder, kidnapping and first-degree robbery in an incident that left a 77-year-old man severely beaten. Police said he should be considered armed and dangerous.

“It’s very concerning to know that someone who has committed that sort of crime was out and in our community,” Auburn Police Chief Paul Register said at a Thursday news conference. “We think this is someone who should be in custody.”

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On Thursday, a warrant was issued for Yazeed’s arrest on a charge of failure to appear in court on those charges. His $280,000 bond was revoked.

Investigators late Wednesday afternoon released images of a man wearing dark-colored pants, dark-colored shoes and a camouflage-colored hooded jacket with “Vans” in white writing across the back. The unknown man was seen leaving the area where Blanchard was last seen in what is described as a late 2000’s model Lincoln Town Car, silver or grey in color.

“As part of the ongoing joint investigation with the Auburn Police Division and the Montgomery Police Department into Aniah’s disappearance, investigators are seeking to identify the individual in the video and speak with him,’’ officials said in that press release.

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Register said the warrant against Yazeed was obtained, in part, because of “someone doing the right thing,” indicating one or more tipsters came forward with information. Investigators believe that Blanchard was kidnapped from the convenience store where she and Yazeed were both last seen. He said there is no evidence at this point that the two were acquainted. He said they also have additional information that put Yazeed at the store.

The police chief said there’s a strong possibility at least one other person was involved in Blanchard’s disappearance and more arrests are expected. He described public input as “critical” to the case.

“Obviously of focus is, and has been since the beginning, finding Aniah,” Register said. “It’s about giving them (family) some piece of mind.”

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“This is a family that’s hurting,” he said. “Regardless of the outcome, they want to know where their daughter is.”

The attempted murder and kidnapping incident in which Yazeed is a defendant happened in January 2019. According to court records, two male victims – one of them 77-years-old – were held against their will in a hotel room in January 2019 on the 1200 block of Eastern Boulevard.

The older man was beaten until “unconscious, unresponsive, severely injured and near death” and robbed of a Rolex, rifle, handguns, wallet, bank card, clothing and unknown amount of currency. The other man was also beaten and robbed of at least $40.

In July 2017, Yazeed was arrested Cass County sheriff’s deputies in Missouri on an arrest warrant for aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer.

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