Missing Troy woman’s family searches ‘no matter what’
Amid overcast skies and unseasonably cool air Friday, Jessica Leigh White’s friends and family stood near the roaring traffic on Seven Mile in Detroit, passing out flyers with her photo.
Since the 21-year-old went missing last weekend, her loved ones desperately seek answers whenever and wherever possible. So for days, they’ve returned to the spot the Troy resident was reportedly dropped off, as well as numerous places across the region, distributing pictures in hopes of generating tips.
It’s a constant, emotional watch no one who knows White wants to stop.
“We can’t just sit at home. We have to be out here handing out these flyers, actually interacting with people, showing them this is a huge concern for us,” Harrison Mina, who dates her cousin, said while clutching a large handful of photocopies. “She wasn’t the kind of person who would just disappear like this — especially down here.”
White went out with a friend late April 22, but since late-night texts from that time period to her mother and cousin while in Hazel Park, relatives haven’t heard from her.
Karen White said a 24-year-old man her daughter has known since grade school picked her up last Friday. White told her mother she planned to be home in a few hours.
The mother also received a text message, sent at about 2:45 a.m. April 23, suggesting the man and his father were arguing in an “awkward” encounter.
“When police contacted the home where she was visiting, the homeowner denied that either he or his son knew Jessica,” Crime Stoppers of Michigan officials said. “Her debit card has not been used and she did not show up for a scheduled babysitting job the next day.”
Since then, authorities from multiple agencies have investigated, relatives said. Meanwhile, supporters doggedly followed up on tips from people who believed they spotted the missing woman and even combed around abandoned homes. So far, though, “we can’t confirm anything,” said her cousin, Kaitlyn White.
That’s why she and others passed fresh leaflets from Crime Stoppers, which is offering a $2,500 reward, to the steady stream of drivers in SUVs, vans and sedans near a Coney Island. This week, “we’ve probably passed out 3,000 flyers plus what people brought,” said Brad White, Jessica’s father.
Though she had hardly slept, White’s mother vowed to continue searching “no matter what. I’m not going to stop. If it’s next winter, next year, I’m still going to be looking for her.”
Jessica White is described as 5-foot-5, 180 pounds, with dark brown hair. She has tattoos including a faded peace symbol on her right thumb and the word “Loyalty” on her left arm. She was dressed in a long-sleeved black Nirvana T-shirt with a smiley face, black yoga pants and gray Ugg boots.
Anyone with tips is asked to call 1-800-SPEAK UP.