A man whose sister disappeared five years ago is among the volunteers searching for missing 8-year-old Relisha Rudd.
Pamela Butler was last seen Feb. 12, 2009. Her brother Derrick Butler helped comb the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens for signs of Relisha Monday.
, when she was seen at a motel on New York Avenue in the company of Kahlil Tatum, the 51-year-old janitor who worked at the homeless shelter where she lived. Police and volunteers have searched Kenilworth for several days, finding Tatum’s body Monday.
“Normally, in a case like this, you look back and black people did not get the coverage that they needed to help in situations like this,” Derrick Butler said. “Now the tide is starting to change and hopefully it’ll come to the day that we don’t need the group that I’m involved in, Black and Missing.”
He joined the Black and Missing Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about missing persons of color, after his sister, an Environmental Protection Agency analyst, disappeared under suspicious circumstances from her home on Fourth Street in northwest D.C. Surveillance cameras at her home captured video of Butler’s boyfriend at the time coming and going in the days following her disappearance. Neither he, nor anyone else has ever been charged.
Derrick Butler has taken every opportunity he can to make sure his sister’s name and face aren’t forgotten, and he does what he can in other missing persons cases, like that of Relisha Rudd.
“Just to think that a grown man could look at a child and see something, I don’t understand it,” he said. “So that makes you want to get out there and help the family."