Posts Tagged ‘Caylee Anthony’

Searching for updates on the disappearance of Amber Dubois, the Escondido, Ca. teen who was last seen on February 13, 2009, I ran across these articles “Despite split, teen’s family trying to stay focused ” and “ESCONDIDO: Governor offers $40,000 for arrest in Amber Dubois case

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger offered a $40,000 reward Thursday for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone responsible for the disappearance of missing Escondido teen Amber Dubois.

With Amber’s family offering $60,000 for the safe return of their daughter and the arrest of anyone responsible for her disappearance, the reward money in the case is now $100,000.

If you have followed the cases of Caylee Anthony and Haleigh Cummings, you may have noticed a familiar name, Michelle Bart. At one time, she was the spokesperson for the Anthony’s and Kid Finders Network. Apparently she is now a public relations specialist hired by Amber’s grandmother, Sheila Welch.

In phone interviews Tuesday, the parents said Welch has taken too much control over the search, hiring a public relations specialist against their wishes along with a private investigator.

“The whole thing is pretty ugly,” McGonigle said, adding that her mother has refused to allow for an accounting of what she estimates is $30,000 raised for the Amber Leeane Dubois Trust, which is controlled by the grandmother.

Welch said she has offered to sit down with Amber’s parents to discuss the trust but said they have refused to meet in person. She noted that her efforts have been driven by a sole purpose: To find her granddaughter.

The family’s split, she said, has not prevented her from moving forward on her own search.

Michelle Bart, the public relations specialist hired by Welch, said it’s unfortunate some of the family’s divisions have become public. She said the split has eaten away at her time, at least. When the parents criticized Escondido police earlier this month, for example, Bart had to explain that her camp still very much supports police efforts.

“I’ve used most of my time in the last two or three months doing damage control,” Bart said. “Amber should be the only priority. It should have nothing to do with fighting over a trust.”

Moe Dubois, Amber’s father, acknowledged there are strong family fractures. At times, the family’s message has been distorted by Welch and Bart, he said.

Related Post: Missing 14-year-old Escondido girl


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At a recent vigil for missing children held this past Sunday, Ronald Cummings, the father of missing Haleigh Cummings, had this to say about a couple of the estimated forty people attending. The event was one of many taking place across the country in an effort to raise awareness about those who are missing.

Ronald Cummings to Casey Anthony family: Stay away

Ronald Cummings begged the public for help to find his missing 5-year-old daughter Haleigh Cummings in a video released last week on his lawyer’s Web site.

But today he amended that message — he wants help from everyone except Cindy and George Anthony.

“The family of Ronald Cummings, father of Haleigh Cummings, wishes to make it clear that they do not want any involvement by George and Cindy Anthony in the continuing search for Haleigh Cummings,” according to a news release issued by the Kimball & Snider Law Firm, which represents Cummings.

“The Anthony’s have their own agenda, as witnessed by their recent media tour. The facts relating to the death of Calee (sic) Anthony, which resulted in the first degree murder charges against Casey Anthony, are in no way similar to Haleigh’s disappearance,” the release said.

Was he concerned The National Vigil For Hope an organization whose National Chairperson is Michelle A. Bart, a former spokesperson for the Anthony family, was an organizer of many of the events?

From the The National Vigil For Hope website there is this interesting disclosure. It is ironic that an organization wishing to raise awareness of missing children lists only 12 of them yet has over 60 links to Community Partners.

Disclosure: The National Vigil For Hope is a coalition comprised of businesses, organizations, and individuals throughout communities across the country who believe the power of prayer, hope, and awareness can help bring more positive results in finding the missing children and adults that need to come home to their families. The National Vigil For Hope is a public awareness endeavor in communities across the country; the event is hosted by volunteers and organized by a volunteer committee that own, operate, and manage businesses and organizations in the United States no funds are collected or made for the objective of bringing more awareness to those missing.

How would any collected funds be used?

Update 06-16-09: A Year Later, Caylee’s Kin Helping Others

(CBS) The grandparents of a murdered central Florida two-year old say the father of a missing northern Florida five-year-old is making a mistake by rejecting their offers to come to his aid.

“When your child’s missing, you take any bit of help that you can,” Cindy Anthony remarked to Early Show co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez Tuesday. “You take every help. You don’t turn anybody away. You can’t turn anybody away.”

Related Posts:

A saddened attorney
Reward offered for Caylee Anthony
Caylee Marie Anthony Foundation?

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Cindy and George Anthony spoke to CBS’ “Early Show” this morning about their murdered granddaughter, Caylee, and their daughter Casey, the accused killer. They were scheduled to appear on the “The Oprah Winfrey Show” during May sweeps. Did they believe their message could reach a greater audience with Maggie Rodriguez versus Oprah?

Oprah Cancels Interview with Caylee Anthony’s Grandparents, Cindy and George


April 21, 2009—”Based on the Anthonys’ decision to appear on other programs, we have decided not to move forward with their interview on The Oprah Winfrey Show at this time,” an Oprah Winfrey Show spokesperson said.

The body of grandparents Cindy and George Anthonys’ 2-year-old granddaughter, Caylee Anthony, was found in December 2008. Their daughter and Caylee’s mother, Casey, is currently being held in custody as she awaits trial for the first-degree murder of her daughter.



If the interview is indicative of what Oprah guests were to expect, you may be thankfull she will book someone else. Cindy Anthony is also scheduled to speak at the Melanie Ilene Rieger Memorial Conference on May 13 th  from 4:30-5:30 pm as a Keynote Speaker.


Melanie Ilene Rieger, a college student, was murdered by her boyfriend on May 24, 1994. The conference was established in her memory with the hope that others would avoid such tragedy.



Their segment is titled- Cindy & George Anthony, Grandparents of Caylee Anthony
Under Siege: A Homicide Survivor’s Story

It may be interesting to see what insight Cindy offers. Caylee’s disappearance and the subsequent circus surrounding her death could hardly be described as a text book case study in what to do if a child is missing or in dealing with the media, law enforcement or the general public.

They are attempting to start a Foundation after failed attempts by other charities to assist them. The primary purpose of the foundation is supposedly helping families that are dealing with a missing child which is confusing since a $30,000 boat to search for missing children was donated by Kid Finders Network to the Anthony’s even though water apparently played no role in her death.

Maybe the proverbial question is what they want to do when they grow up which sadly is something Caylee will never do.

Related Posts: A calling, cause or career?

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While reading about future plans to establish “The Haleigh Bug” Foundation, these names immediately came to mind.

John Walsh
Marc Klaas
Patty Wetterling
Kelly Jolkowski
Mark Lunsford (site is being updated)
Colleen Nick
Claudine and Don Ryce
Drew and Joyce Kesse

They all are parents of missing or murdered children who have been instrumental in establishing charities to help others. Some have worked with state and ferderal government to pass laws to protect children by stressing the need for greater awareness of missing or abducted children issues. Others have specifically worked for harsher penalties for the perpertrators of the crimes. Something they all seemed to have was a commitment to a cause and a calling. It is difficult to phathom it was a chosen career path but only they can say for sure.

So which willl “The Haleigh Bug” foundation be, if formally established ?

Someday the question may be answered but for now the focus needs to remain on missing Haleigh Cummings.

“Our goal eventually is to develop this into a charity who helps families of missing children, and we want to allot them a certain period where they don’t have to worry about going to work, how they’re going to take care of the bills. We’re also looking for a career path for Crystal too, to keep her mind going…to keep her strong so I was thinking there’s nobody better to head this up than someone going through this themselves and she’s very excited about it,” said Ragan.

While their daughter, Casey, remains in jail as a suspect in Caylee Anthony’s death, George and Cindy Anthony announced their own intent to WESH2 News to start their own foundation.  

Caylee’s grandparents are getting ready to unveil a Caylee Anthony foundation that will have a search and rescue component like a page from the Texas Equusearch playbook. At the same time, they’re coming out against a permanent Caylee memorial along Suburban Drive.

George and Cindy Anthony unveiled a new search boat named for Caylee. They also unveiled plans for a Caylee Marie Anthony Foundation they both will spearhead.

The boat was built by the Anthony’s long time ally Dennis Milstead of Kid Finder’s network with $30,000 donated from the Never Lose Hope Foundation.”

They funded the boat and an ATV to start us out with the search group,” Milstead said.

“I never want to look for a child in the water or the woods and stuff but if that’s what we have to do that’s what we’re going to have to do,” George Anthony said.

Related Post:

The Haleigh Cummings Fund

Missing from Satsuma Florida

A saddened attorney

Reward offered for Caylee Anthony

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When a child goes missing there is at times a love/hate relationship with the media. Some seek it at all cost while others attempt to avoid any delving by the press into their personal lives.  While some argue the race,  gender or age may dictate the amount of coverage, it appears the cirmcumstances surrounding the child’s disappearance and the actions of family members can play a significant role.

In May of 2007, Madeleine McCann’s disappearance demonstrated new levels of interest through an on-line web campaign and pleas from celebrities. The site findmadeleine garnered millions of hits and millions of dollars were raised in efforts to find her. In the end however, she remains missing.

London-Gerry McCann, whose daughter Madeleine’s 2007 disappearance from a Portuguese resort sparked an international manhunt, told lawmakers that the mass-media coverage of the search for his child degenerated into a voyeuristic “Kate and Gerry show.”

“Our family have been the focus of some of the most sensationalist, untruthful, irresponsible and damaging reporting in the history of the press,” he told a panel of lawmakers investigating media standards, privacy and libel.

Similar complaints have been voiced by the father of  Haleigh Cummings who has been missing for over a month from Satsuma, Fl.

Fox News- The father of missing Florida girl Haleigh Cummings claimed he doesn’t want the media to focus on his personal life — a day after getting married and flying to New York to appear on national TV.

Ronald Cummings, 25, and his new bride, 17-year-old Misty Croslin, appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” Friday morning. They got married Thursday in Putnam County, Fla. then flew to New York.

Cummings said he didn’t know what his personal life had to do with national television, and stressed that the media needs to get his daughter’s face out there.

Another family which may be unhappy with press coverage, for different reasons, are the adopted parents of  missing Jaliek Rainwalker,  Stephen Kerr and Jocelyn McDonald. The adoptive father, Stephen Kerr was named a person of interest“ in his disappearance .

 In the case of murdered Caylee Anthony, her grandparents have often been at odds with the media. They have been the subject of countless stories with their every move covered since she first was reported missing. At times they seemed to try to avoid being in the spotlight only to generating more interest in possible motives concerning their actions. The mother of murdered Caylee continues to generate interest from many as she awaits trial for her alleged involvement.

Orlando Senteniel-In the pre-Anthony days, jail spokesman Allen Moore said, he typically would log 80 to 120 contacts with news reporters per month. In July — when Caylee was reported missing and Anthony first jailed — Moore logged 357 media contacts.

By August, the volume of media contacts grew so large that Moore estimates it at 463 for the month.

“In the 12 1/2 years I have worked as P.I.O. [public information officer] for Orange County Corrections, no case has generated this much media activity for such a long period of time,” he said.

Those not expressing concerns with the media are the families of these missing children.

Adam Herrman 

Adji Desir 

Amber Dubois 

Trenton Duckett

Mark Degner & Bryan Hayes

 Kara Kopetsky 

 Amy Fitzpatrick

Angel Villegas Cano

Joanna Delcarmen Cano Pedraza, (15) and Angel were last seen on March 4, 2009. They may be in the company of Rodrigo Villegas (19). A felony warrant is on file for Rodrigo. They may travel to Mexico. Joanna’s ears are pierced. CAUTION MAY BE ARMED AND DANGEROUS.

Bryan Dossantos-Gomes

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In this article from the Korea Times, “Missing Child Search Costs $570,000“, it doesn’t mention rewards that may be offered but does cover some tangible and intangible costs. At the current exchange rate, 1 USD = 1403.8 KRW (Korean Won).

By Kim Tae-jong
Staff Reporter


It takes about 570 million won ($570,000) and 840 days on average to find a missing child if the disappearance lasts more than one year, a report showed, Monday.

The Child Fund analyzed 2,207 missing children cases reported since 1986 that took more than one year to return the child home. 

The average cost includes 28 million won for advertisements, 12 million won for transportation and lodging fees and 14 million won for psychiatric treatment.

In addition, some 500 million won is spent indirectly, the civic group said, citing the parents’ loss of income during their search.

But the loss from a missing child can be much higher if considering disputes or sacrifices such as the divorce of the parents, renunciation of further pregnancies or less affection to siblings, it said.



Does it make you curious about the costs associated with finding a missing child in the U.S.? The figures aren’t readily available. The news headlines will mention rewards but the articles seldom, if ever, outline actual search costs.

The NCMEC  receives approximatley $30 million in Federal Funding but it is difficult to determine from their annual report how much is actually spent on missing children as opposed to fighting cyber crime.

National Mandate and Mission

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s®(NCMEC) mission is to help prevent child abduction and sexual exploitation; help find missing children; and assist victims of child abduction and sexual exploitation, their families, and the professionals who serve them.

There are two offices located in south Florida’s east and west coasts (Naples and Lake Park). How active these offices are in the searches for Adji Desir or Haleigh Cummings is unclear as NCMEC/Florida is descibed as the central point for NCMEC child-protection education and prevention.



Leonard Padilla had offered a $25,000 reward if  Haleigh Cummings was returned by midnight Saturday February 14th assuming she was abducted.

In the disappearance of Adji Desir, there is a reward of $23,000 from multiple sources being offered for information leading to his recovery.

A $50,000 reward for Kara Kopetsky soon to end on February 17th for the missing Belton, Mo. teenager.

At one time there was a $225,000 reward for information that would help find Caylee Anthony.


In the missing case of Dominick Arceneaux, is a reward being offered?

Update: Andre Arceneaux, Dominick’s father:

“My family, my in-laws and friends from all over the United State, since I’m in the military, we all got stuff set up, setting up to where we can raise a $15,000 reward, if we can pull in more, we’re gonna do more.”

These rewards don’t include the costs of searching for the child. The news media will discuss the number of volunteers or charitable organizations involved but not the actual costs incurred by the communities. In the case of an AMBER Alert being issued, the law enforcement costs are rarely made available in terms of resources utilized except in cases where it may be determined to be based on false information and even then they simply provide estimates of a few thousand dollars.

In May 2007, three-year-old Madeleine McCann went missing from her hotel bedroom in Portugal while her 2-year-old twin siblings slept nearby. She remains missing.

In addition to the money spent by the fund for search efforts, UK police reveal Madeleine bill has exceeded $787,475. It isn’t clear if it includes the costs of the Portuguese Police investigations.

The hunt for Madeleine McCann cost Leicestershire Police more than £500,000, it has been revealed.

Madeleine was aged almost four when she vanished from a holiday flat in Praia da Luz, southern Portugal, in May 2007.

Published reports indicate the Find Madeleine fund raised nearly £2 million in donations between May 2007 and March 2008. 

Funds spent:

  • £815,000 on the search $1,162,956
  • £111,522 for legal costs $159,135
  • £123,573 for campaign management $176,331
  • £250,000 on private detectives $356,735

Update 05-28-09: According to the Palatka Daily News:

Putnam County Florida commissioners have approved the transfer of $164,729 to the sheriff’s office budget from several grants, including $35,000 from the state to help defray costs associated with the search for Haleigh Cummings, a 5-year-old Satsuma girl who disappeared on Feb. 10.

Related Posts:
Arrests made, rewards paid

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The same Jacksonville, Florida based company, Showbiz Promotions, who brought you the Michael Vick dog chew toys, recently attempted to market the “Caylee Sunshine Doll”  as a tribute to murdered Caylee Anthony.  It was immediately viewed by many to be in extremely poor taste.

Sales Suspended of Caylee Doll Made as ‘Tribute’ to Murdered Florida Girl

A Florida company said it is halting planned sales of a wide-eyed doll called Caylee that was made as a “tribute” to a murdered Orlando girl with the same name.

The Jacksonville-based Showbiz Promotions was going to offer the “Inspirational Caylee Sunshine Doll,” named after 2-year-old Caylee Anthony, for $29.99 starting at noon Tuesday.

Initially, their site left you with a strong impression they would be donating a portion of the proceeds to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. However, the NCMEC quickly issued a statement disavowing any interest in receiving a donation.


Ernie Allen, President of NCMEC stated, “This effort is outrageous and attempts to exploit the tragic murder of a child for personal benefit. We would like the general public to understand that we are not involved in these efforts.”
As a matter of policy the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children does not accept funds from the sale of any products that feature missing, murdered, recovered, or sexually exploited children. NCMEC does not and will not ever be associated with any attempt to commercialize or raise money in connection with the victimization of any child.


The last sentence appears to be in conflict with a link on their own site promoting a golf tournament; presumably a fund raising event.

Annual NCMEC Golf Tournament & Auction


In the photo there appears to be a missing child poster being held. Unless it is a sample, not involving an actual missing child, then it would seem to be an attempt to raise money in connection with the victimization of a child. Conversely, if it is an actual missing child and the goal was to publicize the disappearance, why not link to them on the site?

Update 04-10-09:
On their website on March 5th Showbiz Promotions claims to have donated $5,000 to the NCMEC however, they acknowledge receipt of $10 on March 12th.

On January 29th the NCMEC in a statement indicated they would receive no monies from them. The article doesn’t mention if the $10 had been returned. Is the NCMEC concerned the donation wasn’t for the $5,000 or that they received any donation at all based on the earlier statement?

Fla. attorney general sues maker of Vick chew toy

The lawsuit also claims the company sold a doll named for slain toddler Caylee Anthony and promised to give proceeds to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The lawsuit says only $10 has been donated.

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