By Rachel Brooks
A body has been discovered near a church in Shorter, Macon County, Alabama, citing CBS. There is a strong reason to believe it belonged to Aniah Blanchard who was kidnapped in October. She was a beautiful 19-year-old college girl known for being the stepdaughter of the UFC fighter Walt Harris. Her life is already being memorialized by her Homewood, Alabama community citing ABC 33/40. Homewood’s local churches adorn crosses with blue ribbons and photos of the beloved teenager.
Auburn Police Department released an official statement yesterday November 25, citing Auburn News. On November 25, at roughly 10:45 am, the Auburn Police, Lee County District Attorney’s office, U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, and Montgomery County Sherriff Office were called to a wooded area in the ”38000 block of County Road 2 in Shorter, Alabama.” The area cited by CBS is the New Hope Baptist Church, which is actually on Banks McDade Rd. The 38000 block of County Road 2 is about 5 minutes away from that. The exact location is nearer to Shorters Church and Webster Progressive Funeral Home.
It was a short search later when the investigative units discovered human remains several feet into the woodline. The ALEA and Auburn Police will investigate further to determine how the victim came to be in this precise location. The examination is proceeding with DNA test results to determine whether these remains are, in fact, those of Aniah Blanchard.
Arrested on probable cause of suspicion in kidnapping and murder are Antwain “Squirmy” Fisher and Ibraheem Yazeed. Fisher appeared in court just hours before a tip led police to these remains.
Blanchard was abducted outside a convenience store in Auburn, Alabama on October 24. The convenience store’s surveillance footage shows Yazeed observing Blanchard as he bought a beverage, citing Star Tribune. A witness observed Yazeed forcing Blanchard into her vehicle against her will, stated Auburn police Detective Josh Mixon.
Blanchard’s car, which Daily Press described as a black Honda CRV, was discovered on October 26 in a Montgomery apartment complex. Blood indicative of “a life-threatening injury” was discovered in the passenger side seat. The Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences ran tests that confirmed the blood matched Blanchard’s.
Ibraheem Yazeed fled to Escambia County, Florida where he has been captured by US Marshals. Fisher was arrested for aiding and abetting Yazeed. A third suspect, David Johnson Jr., has also been arrested for hindering the prosecution, citing WVTM 13.
It is unknown, at this time, if Blanchard was familiar with Yazeed prior to her abduction.
The remains were located between the last place that Blanchard was seen on October 24 outside the convenience store and the apartment complex in Montgomery where her car was discovered.