Person of interest in Aniah Blanchard disappearance arrested in Florida
AUBURN, Ala. (WBRC) - UPDATE: Escambia County Major Andrew Hobbs confirms the man of interest in the disappearance of Aniah Blanchard has been arrested.
Authorities say Ibraheem Yazeed was apprehended on I-10 at the Pine Forest exit, which is the second exit in Pensacola past the Alabama state line.
It is unknown when Yazeed will be extradited back to Alabama.
ORIGINAL: The Auburn Police Division has identified the person of interest in Aniah Blanchard’s disappearance as 30-year-old Ibraheem Yazeed from Montgomery, Alabama.
According to Auburn Police Chief Paul Register, a warrant has been obtained for his arrest for the charge of first-degree kidnapping.
Currently, the U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Taskforce, along with other agencies assisting in this investigation, are actively searching for Yazeed.
Yazeed has a criminal background in Alabama that includes a history of being charged with violent crimes.
Yazeed was out on bond for attempted murder, two counts of first-degree kidnapping and two counts of first-degree robbery in connection to a Feb. 2019 case out of Montgomery.
On Thursday, Montgomery District Judge Pamela Higgins revoked Yazeed’s bond, ordering his arrest.
Officers said he should be considered dangerous and potentially armed.
The charge stems from the investigation of the disappearance of Aniah Haley Blanchard between Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019, and Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019.
Further investigation and analysis of the evidence have determined that Yazeed was at the same location Blanchard was last seen and is involved in taking Aniah against her will.
Aniah’s father, Elijah Blanchard, says this latest information dispels any thought that Aniah was out late at night on October 23, trying to meet someone on a date.
“I never thought she was intentionally meeting anyone. I think she was at the wrong place at the wrong time and I feel like she was being targeted by that certain individual,” he said.
Blanchard is hoping the public will help authorities find Yazeed and lead authorities to the whereabouts of his daughter.
“I would ask why he would attack someone so innocent. People attack people when they are vulnerable. I think this guy is no rookie at what he did he knows exactly what he is doing,” Blanchard said.
Chief Register says additional charges and/or arrests are anticipated.
Anyone with information regarding his whereabouts or having information on this case is asked to call the Auburn Police Division Detective Section at 334-501-3140, Central Alabama Crime Stoppers at 334-215-STOP, or the 24-hour non-emergency number at 334-501-3100.