Virginia Legislator to Introduce Bill to Find Missing Adults: Ashanti Alert
A new member of the Virginia House of Delegates plans to introduce legislation to help find missing adults.
The legislation is inspired by the tragic disappearance and death of Ashanti Billie. Shortly after her disappearance in September, Virginia Beach police knew that Ashanti Billie was missing and that her cellphone had been found in a dumpster. But because she was an adult, detectives didn’t request an Amber Alert or immediately reach out to the media, according to Billie’s family. Billie was found deceased 11 days later outside a Charlotte, N.C., church.
“We don’t want this to happen again,” said Delegate-Elect Jay Jones (D-Norfolk), announcing plans to introduce legislation next month to create an “Ashanti Alert” system to cover cases like Billie’s. He argued that there is no easy way for law enforcement to seek the public’s help for missing people between the ages of 18 and 60; police can can issue “Senior Alerts” for missing elderly people.
“We need something in the middle,” Billie’s mother, Brandy, said.
Read more about this story in the Virginian-Pilot.