Proposal Would Create Alerts for ‘Critically Missing' Adults

The legislation is unofficially named after Ashanti Billie

A Virginia state lawmaker has authored a bill that would create alerts for "critically missing" adults. 

The legislation is unofficially named after Ashanti Billie, a Prince George's County, Maryland, woman who police say was kidnapped from a naval base in Virginia and later found dead in North Carolina.

The legislation was prefiled last week for the upcoming General Assembly session. 

Billie, 19, was reported missing on Sept. 18 after she failed to show up for work. Her cellphone was found in a dumpster a few hours later. According to The Virginian-Pilot, Virginia Beach police reached out to the media the next afternoon, more than 30 hours after her cell phone was found.  

Her body was found 11 days later and more than 300 miles away, outside a church in a residential neighborhood of Charlotte.

A 45-year-old retired Navy veteran has been charged with Billie's death.

Eric Brian Brown, who is homeless, worked as a day laborer and lived at buildings on and around the naval bases, according to an arrest affidavit. As a retired Navy petty officer, Brown had access to Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek in Virginia Beach. Prosecutors said the 21-year Navy veteran visited Billie's workplace almost daily.

Witnesses reported Brown "attempting to flirt with Billie" on several occasions. One witness said he made a "crude sexual comment" to her.

Billie's family believes alerts should be in place for suspicious situations like the one Billie was in. 

Virginia House Del. Jerrauld "Jay" Jones of Norfolk introduced the bill. If passed into law, it would create the "Virginia Critically Missing Adult Alert Program." 

The General Assembly session will begin Jan. 10.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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