Aniah Blanchard Case: What to Know About the Missing Stepdaughter of UFC Heavyweight Walt Harris

Aniah Blanchard with stepfather Walt Harris
Aniah Blanchard with stepdad Walt Harris. Facebook

Aniah Blanchard, the 19-year-old stepdaughter of UFC heavyweight Walt Harris, was last seen on Oct. 23 at a gas station in Auburn, Alabama.

Surveillance video showed her walking the aisles of the station's convenience store. The Southern Union State Community College student had earlier in the day visited her stepfather and mother, Angela Haley-Harris. Just before midnight, Snapchat messages seemed to indicate she was with a young man, but it was not clear whether she, or someone else, sent them. 

The next day, her mother said, Blanchard's phone went dark. Her family reported her missing to the Auburn Police Department. 

Saturday, Oct. 26

A citizen calls police to report a heavily damaged car abandoned at an apartment complex in Montgomery, about 55 miles from where Blanchard disappeared. Officers recover her 2017 Honda CR-V there. 

Wednesday, Oct. 30

A task force is formed from more than 60 organizations, including law enforcement agencies such as the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences. 

Thursday, Oct. 31

Auburn police say evidence inside Blanchard's crashed Honda shows she was "harmed" and considered to be a victim of "foul play." Her mother speaks to a local television station, saying, "There has to be someone who knows" what happened to the young woman. "We have to have her back," the mother says. 

Reward money for information about Blanchard's disappearance rises to $105,000.

Wednesday, Nov. 6

Authorities announce they are looking for a person of interest and release a photo of a man seen on surveillance tape inside the gas station convenience store at the same time as Blanchard. He is described as being in his 20s, weighing about 200 pounds and standing approximately 5 feet, 8 inches tall.

Thursday, Nov. 7

The person of interest is identified as Ibraheem Yazeed, 29, and authorities say they are looking for him. He is wanted on a charge of first-degree kidnapping.

Friday, Nov. 8

Yazeed is arrested in Florida and booked into Escambia County Jail.  He is extradited to Alabama. A probable cause affidavit reveals a significant amount of blood was found on the passenger seat of Blanchard's car and it is "indicative of someone suffering a life-threatening injury."

Wednesday, Nov. 13

Texas EquuSearch, the horse-mounted national search organization looking for Blanchard, announces its members have returned to Texas. 

The nonprofit group says it has used "every resource available" to search for the college student along Interstate 85, the Tuskegee National Forest and local waterways. "It's always hard to leave folks without the answer we came here to find," group spokeswoman Destinie Duvall told The Opelika-Auburn News. "My heart hurts for everyone today."

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