Community members gather to remember Relisha Rudd and ask for help solving her disappearance

Advocates for the missing and police came together in D.C. Tuesday night to remember a missing girl, hoping to revive interest in the cold case and solve the disappearance of Relisha Rudd. She disappeared eight years ago.

Rudd was 8 years old when she was last seen on March 1, 2014 with the janitor of the D.C. General homeless shelter in Southeast, where she lived with her family. The janitor later killed his wife and then himself.

But what became of the little girl?

Henderson Long and D.C. Police Commander Pamela Wheeler-Taylor speak to reporters about Relisha Rudd, who disappeared eight years ago. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)

“Somebody knows something,” said Henderson Long, who leads the group D.C.’s Missing Voice. “These cases are tough, but you never give up. You keep working; you keep getting out in the community; you keep doing neighborhood canvasses; you keep passing the flyers out,” he said.

There’s a $50,000 reward from D.C. police and the FBI for information that leads to the Rudd’s location and return.

“The key is, if you have information come forward,” Long said.

The group gathered at busy New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road Northeast, putting up and handing out flyers of the girl.

“This is the flyer. It has an age progression photo … what she would look like today,” Blaq Rose, operator of a website devoted to missing and killed Black girls and women.

CLICK TO ENLARGE: Flyers handed out in Northeast D.C. show an age-progression photo of Relisha Rudd, who disappeared eight years ago. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)


“We’re praying and hoping that somebody knows something, and we can close this case,” Rose said.

The D.C. police commander in charge of the division responsible for investigating crimes against children thanked community members for their interest in finding the missing girl and promised that police wouldn’t quit the case.

“Time passes, but we’re still continuing this investigation as if it’s fresh. Every new lead that we get, we investigate to the fullest,” Commander Pamela Wheeler-Taylor, head of the Youth and Family Services Division, said.


Dick Uliano

Whether anchoring the news inside the Glass-Enclosed Nerve Center or reporting from the scene in Maryland, Virginia or the District, Dick Uliano is always looking for the stories that really impact people's lives.

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