Jashyah Moore, 14, of East Orange, who had been missing for a month, was found safe in Harlem on Thursday.
Reports indicate that Moore was living in a shelter in Brooklyn and runaway to hide from her mother. Someone spotted the teen in Harlem. In order alter her appearance, authorities say Moore cut her hair.
Moore’s mother, Jamie, was reportedly arrested on child endangerment charges Friday. The teen and her 3-year-old brother have been taken out of Jaime’s custody. Officials say Moore is comfortable where she is.
Moore was last seen on Oct. 14 at Poppie’s Deli at 520 Central Avenue, not far from her home. The missing girl’s mother never returned from a morning trip to the nearby store. Since then, the East Orange Police Division (EOPD) has been working in collaboration with the FBI, the New Jersey State Police, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office and the Essex County Sheriff’s Office to follow all leads related to Moore’s disappearance.
According to deli employees and surveillance footage from that date, Jashyah entered the store with an older male who paid for her items at the register. The footage does not appear to show the two leaving together. That man was identified and interviewed by police; no foul play is suspected.
Last Saturday, to leave no stone unturned, the East Orange Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and EOPD also searched the pond at Monte Irvin Orange Park with the assistance of the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, Bergen County OEM, Wyckoff Fire Department, Elmwood Park Fire Department, and the Emerson Fire Department. Crews used boats and sonar to search the pond, but did not find anything.
East Orange Mayor Ted Green and East Orange Police Chief Phyllis Bindi have been emphatically encouraging and supporting every effort that will uncover Moore’s location.
“Jashyah is one of our own. As a parent and grandparent myself, this hits my heart hard and I will not rest until she’s found,” said Mayor Green. “Her safety and well-being are our main focus and we need everyone to be our eyes and ears to help us bring her safely home.”
During a press conference held on Wednesday, Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore Stephens said that more than 50 dedicated law enforcement personnel have been scouring the area, retracing Jashyah’s steps, reviewing video footage and following up on old and new leads. Although the prosecutor’s office is now the lead in this case, the command center for the investigation remains in the Comstat Room at EOPD Headquarters.
The initial Crime Stoppers’ reward was to $20,000 thanks to the generosity of another anonymous donation from a local business owner
Officials are set to release more information about what happened to Moore and her recovery.