Justice for Maleah! Mother’s ex-fiancé arrested, charged in connection with missing 4-year-old girl
JEFFERY L. BONEY | 5/26/2019, 8:58 p.m.
Disturbing surveillance video footage that came from a neighbor’s house appeared to show the last seen or known images of little Maleah from April 30, where she is seen wearing a bright pink tutu and trailing behind Vence as he is headed back into their apartment, the same day Bowens left to go out of town.
After several days pass, little Maleah is never seen again on any of the surveillance footage.
In one of the clips from May 3, Vence is seen leaving the apartment, carrying a laundry basket with a black trash bag in it. Then in another clip, he is seen carrying a bottle of bleach with his son following him out of the apartment, moments before they head out to allegedly go pick Bowens up from the airport.
These findings caused police to investigate Vence further, particularly looking for clues inside the apartment and the vehicle that was allegedly stolen. Police used canine officers trained to identify the scent of a body. The canine officers sensed human decomposition in the trunk of the vehicle. At the apartment, a chemical agent that can discover blood that cannot be viewed by the human eye is used, and blood is found in the hallway leading to the bathroom and on various surfaces in the bathroom.
As a result of their findings, police arrested Vence May 11 in connection with little Maleah’s disappearance and charged him with tampering with evidence, namely a human corpse, after the smell of decomposing human remains was detected in the trunk of the car.
After having held press conferences and interviews pleading for little Maleah’s safe return, Bowens finally broke down and told investigators that Vence had been abusing the 4-year-old and recently said through her spokesman, civil rights activist Quanell X, that she believed her fiancé harmed the girl and is not fully certain that she may still be alive.
Little Maleah had been removed from the home, along with her brothers, for investigated allegations of physical abuse in August, according to CPS officials. The girl had suffered a significant head injury, but a judge ruled that the children should be returned home in February. Bowens states that the children were returned because it had been determined that the head injury was a result of a fall, not because of any physical abuse that had taken place.
Cases like this tend to get reported quite often and, unfortunately, it takes the entire community to help identify and recognize the signs of abuse, so as to protect vulnerable children like little Maleah and countless others.
According to the World Health Organization, child maltreatment is defined as the abuse and neglect that occurs to children under 18 years of age. Every year, there are an estimated 41,000 homicide deaths in children under 15 years of age. It is important to emphasize that children are the victims and are never to blame for maltreatment.
There are three different types of people who carry out abductions – a family member, an acquaintance or a stranger.