Virginia girl missing since 2019 found in Pawtucket; mother arrested

Blackstone Valley

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — Quick thinking by Pawtucket Public Library staff helped detectives track down a 7-year-old girl who was reported missing back in 2019.

Detective Sgt. Theodore Georgitsis said the Pawtucket Police Department first learned about the missing child on Friday, after being contacted by staff members who were concerned “on a couple of occasions about a mother and daughter.”

A quick internet search revealed a Facebook post from 2019 that indicated the pair was missing out of Florida, according to Georgitsis.

Detectives later determined the child was missing out of Virginia, Georgitsis said, adding that the mother had a warrant out for her arrest in Florida for interfering with custody and abduction by a non-custodial parent.

Georgitsis said the investigation led them to Fogarty Manor where the child was located and the mother, identified as Jessica Van Daam, was arrested.

Van Daam, 48, is currently being held as a fugitive from justice at the ACI and is awaiting extradition back to Florida. The child is in the custody of the Department of Children, Youth and Families.

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