Missing Baby Lisa Irwin: Is Baby Lisa More Important Than Missing Jahessye Shockley?

‘Because she’s a little black girl,’ media ignores her story, says grandmother

Shirley Johnson, the grandmother of missing Arizona girl Jahessye Shockley, has alleged her granddaughter’s story is “not getting out” because Jahessye is not white like, for example, baby Lisa.

Jahessye Shockley, a brown-eyed, African-American girl, was last seen Oct. 11, when it is purported that she wandered away from her home in Glendale, Ariz. Her mother, Jerice Hunter, was away from the home on an errand at the time of Jahessye’s disappearance. She had left the care of her five-year-old daughter in the hands of her three other children.

After a three mile wide search around the Johnson home, authorities currently lack viable suspects, indications of where Jahessye may have gone or was taken, or evidence to assist in their investigation.

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For assistance, the Glendale Police Department has reached out to media sources, tip hotlines, and offered their own reward of $10,000 in addition to the $5,000 already put forward by the girl’s family.

Johnson says it’s not enough, according to the Associated Press.

“The Glendale Police Department has not brought this to the forefront. They botched this investigation… I believe it’s because she’s a little black girl,” she stated.

In response to Johnson’s accusation, the department vehemently denied the claim, with Sgt. Brent Coombs stating that Jahessye’s case was, “the department’s number one priority.”

According to some people, Johnson’s claim that nonwhite people that go missing are less publicized may have some validity.

Dubbed missing white woman syndrome, it’s asserted that media outlets tend to focus more on “‘damsels in distress’- typically, affluent young white women and teenagers,” said Kim Pasqualini to TruTV.

Cases like that of Laci Peterson, Natalee Holloway, and, most recently, baby Lisa Irwin spark national media news attention, while others, like the case of Jahessye Shockley, are not.

A startling real-world example can be found right on one of the world’s most popular search engines. Typing ‘baby Lisa Irwin’ into Google’s search yields over 43 million results, while ‘Jahessye Shockley’ gets a meager 70,000 hits.

Jahessye went missing Oct. 11, about a week after baby Lisa did.

Glenn Johnson, a local man with no relation to the missing kindergartner told AP, “I’ve got very little confidence in the police, mostly because they have no logical place to look… Sometimes, it’s a dead end.”

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