Saturday, December 14, 2019

Man claims to be Detroit boy reported missing since 1994

Man claims to be Detroit boy D’Wan Sims who was reported missing aged four while Christmas shopping with his mother at a mall in 1994 – releasing his baby photo with ‘striking resemblance’

  • The man, who DailyMail.com can reveal to be Mike Cash, came forward to the Livonia Police Department earlier this week to give a DNA sample 
  • D’Wan Sims was reported missing on December 11, 1994 at the Wonderland Mall in Livonia, Michigan, by his mother, Dwanna Harris
  • Police say they first learned of the man’s claims of being D’Wan after they were alerted to a Facebook post in which he spoke about his believed identity
  • Police have not released any information about where he says he has been for the past 25 years or why he has finally come forward
  • D´Wan now would be 29. He still is listed as missing on the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children website 

Almost exactly 25 years after four-year-old D’Wan Sims was last seen alive, a man has come forward to authorities claiming to be the missing boy.

The man, who DailyMail.com can reveal to be Mike Cash, came forward to the Livonia Police Department earlier this week to give a DNA sample to investigators hoping to prove that he is the missing toddler.

D’Wan Sims was reported missing on December 11, 1994 at the Wonderland Mall in Livonia, Michigan, by his mother, Dwanna Harris, who said the boy vanished while she was Christmas shopping.

Police say they first learned of Cash’s claims after being alerted to one of his Facebook posts, in which he said he believed he was D’Wan and accused his parents of lying to him about certain aspects of his childhood.

Cash also shared a photo of himself as a baby, believing the picture to strike a strong resemblance to one of D’Wan taken shortly before he went missing.  


D’Wan Sims (left) vanished when he was four years old. Mike Cash, has now come forward to the Livonia Police Department, and shared a picture of himself as a child which he says is similar  (right)

The man, who DailyMail.com can reveal to be Mike Cash (above), is said to have given a DNA sample to investigators hoping to prove he’s the missing toddler

Police have not released any information about where Cash says he has been for the past 25 years, or why he has finally come forward now.

‘I guess what’s odd is that he claimed that he didn’t want any of this information out in the media and from what I understand he has put this out on social media,’ Livonia police Capt. Ron Taig said.

D’Wan would now be 29. He still is listed as missing on the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children website.

Surveillance video observed by police at the time he vanished showed mom Harris inside the mall, but no images were seen of D’Wan – leading investigators to believe he was never at the mall in the first place.

Suspicion then fell on the boy’s family members, with a particular focus on Harris.


Age-progressed photographs of D’Wan Sims show how the boy may have looked as a teenager (left) and as a man in he 20s (right)

D’Wan Sims was reported missing on December 11, 1994 at the Wonderland Mall in Livonia by his mother, Dwanna Harris (above), who said the boy vanished while she was Christmas shopping

‘I was here at the department and we looked at all of the video, we checked everything, and we never saw D’Wan’ with his mother,’ Taig said, as reported by Detroit 4.

Sgt. Shelley Holloway told the Detroit Free Press in 2009 that investigators were ‘pretty confident D’Wan never made it to Wonderland Mall.’

Police reached out to Harris after speaking with Cash. She is now said to be cooperating with the investigation and told police she had previously spoken with Cash on Facebook before blocking him.

‘She did contact and talk to this person and ask him about some personal information that only her and D’Wan Sims would know, like birthmarks,’ Taig stated. ‘He wasn’t able to answer those questions, along with the date of birth.’ 

Cash made repeated claims to be D’Wan on Facebook, which eventually alerted authorities

 

Cash confirmed on Facebook that he submitted a DNA test to police earlier today

The police department still has DNA samples from D’Wan’s father and mother and the new sample has been submitted to the University of Northern Texas for analysis

Harris told reporters in 1994 that her son was four and that ‘he’s alone and he needs to come home to his mother.’

‘The only thing that I want the public to know, is that my only concern is finding my son,’ Harris said. ‘Whoever has my baby, I know he’s safe, and I know you´re taking good care of him … What I’m hoping is that someone may have ran across my child. We’ve got your Christmas ready, so, just come home.’

Despite suspicions persisting about her potential role in her son’s disappearance, Harris has continued to maintain her innocence.

In the same 1994 press conference, she claimed she was being treated unfairly due to the Susan Smith case at the time, where a woman reported that her children were kidnapped in a carjacking but admitted to drowning them nine days later.

https://youtube.com/watch?v=0nXVQ1UTqsk%3Ffeature%3Doembed

Police say they first learned of Cash’s claims after being alerted to one of his Facebook posts

Mike Cash give a DNA sample to investigators hoping to prove that he is the missing toddler

Police say they first learned of the man’s claims of being D’Wan after they were alerted to a Facebook post in which he spoke about his believed identity, and voiced concerns about inconsistencies in what his parents told him about his childhood

The Detroit Free Press reported in 2009 that D’Wan’s mother had changed her name and moved to North Carolina.

This is the second high profile case this year of someone coming forward claiming to be a missing child. 

In April, Brian Michael Rini claimed he was 14 and told police in Kentucky that he was Timmothy Pitzen, an Aurora, Illinois, boy who disappeared in 2011 at age 6. Authorities said Rini told them he escaped captors who sexually abused him.

Federal authorities said they were suspicious after Rini refused to be fingerprinted. DNA testing quickly revealed his true identity. Rini had been released from a state prison in March after serving more than a year on burglary and vandalism charges. Prison records show he was accused of making up stories during his time there.

When confronted with the DNA results, Rini said he’d watched a story about Timmothy on ABC’s ’20/20′ and wanted to get away from his own family, the FBI said. Authorities said he twice earlier portrayed himself in Ohio as a juvenile victim of sex trafficking.

He faces trial next year on charges of aggravated identity theft and lying to FBI agents.

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