CHICAGO (CBS) — Police are searching for a South Side teenager who is developmentally disabled.
19-year-old Jessica DeShazer has been missing for eight days and her family believes she’s being held against her will.
“Jessica is a happy-go-lucky child. She has a big smile, a big heart and she trusts everyone,” said Ora DeShazer, Jessica’s mother.
Jessica Deshazer’s family thinks that trusting nature may have led to her disappearance eight days ago.
Relatives say the 19-year-old thinks like someone much younger.
“Anybody could manipulate her and say come on Jessica and she would just go,” said Jennifer DeShazer, Jessica’s Aunt.
And somehow one moment last Monday she was in her room at her house near 93rd and Elizabeth and the next – she’d vanished. Her mom says she saw her just before 1 a.m.
“We were in my room. We were watching movies together,” said Ora DeShazer.
At 3:30 her aunt saw her.
“The last time I had saw her I went to the bathroom and that’s when I saw her, she was, you know in her room on the phone,” said Jennifer DeShazer.
“I’m up about 6:30 quarter to 7 and I looked in her room. She wasn’t there,” said Ora DeShazer.
Community activist Andrew Holmes says people he’s talked to on the street have led him to recent online video and photos that could signal the teen is being held somewhere.
“I’m going to keep the hope and pray that she’s still alive, but at the same time, time is getting very crucial,” said Holmes.
A K-9 team is helping too, ready to pinpoint where Jessica is when they get a good tip.
“I have gotten some scent articles from the family to try to track her and that’s exactly what I intend on doing,” said K-9 Specialist Robert Larson.
Chicago police are investigating the case. Jessica’s family says someone is keeping her cell phone charged, but no one answers their calls.
Anyone with information about here whereabouts should call Area South detectives at (312) 747-8274.