(NEW YORK) — The mother of Jashyah Moore, a 14-year-old from New Jersey who had been missing for about a month, has been charged with two counts of second-degree endangering the welfare of a child.
The charges against 39-year-old Jamie Moore were announced in a press release Friday from acting Essex County prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens and East Orange Police Chief Phyllis Bindi, who added that the charges include allegations of physical abuse and neglect.
Moore was arrested early Friday and is being held at the Essex County Correctional Facility.
Jashyah — who was found safe in New York City on Thursday after a weekslong search by local officials since her disappearance on Oct. 14 — and her 3-year-old brother were removed from Moore’s custody by the New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency (DCPP).
At a press conference Friday, police said Jashyah had run away from home and did not want to return.
The teen “is currently safe and is being provided all appropriate services,” Stephens said in a statement. Authorities believe Jashyah was alone when she was found. She is said to have found shelter in Brooklyn, but the details of her time in New York are still being uncovered by investigators.
A reward for finding Jashyah had reached $20,000 this week.
“Jashyah is one of our own,” East Orange Mayor Ted Green said. “We’re asking this community, as we have been asking from Day 1, to help us in locating this young lady.”
Jashyah’s family had pleaded with the community to help bring her daughter home.
She had last been seen around 10 a.m. at Poppie’s Deli Store in East Orange after her mother, Jamie Moore, asked her to go to the store for groceries. According to police, surveillance footage shows Jashyah entering the store with an older male who paid for her items. The footage, however, does not appear to show them leaving the store together, police said. The man has cooperated with investigators and was helpful in the search, according to police.
Jashyah initially returned from the store and told her mom she had lost the card the family uses for groceries, police said. Moore said she told Jashyah to retrace her steps to find it.
Moore said that was the last time she saw her daughter.
“I cannot imagine what she might be going through just being away from us this long, being away from her family who loves her very much,” her mother said through tears at a press conference last Friday. “If anybody knows anything, please, please come forward.”
East Orange Police, the FBI and the New Jersey State Police worked in collaboration to help find Jashyah. Anyone who knows about her disappearance should call the East Orange Police at (973) 266-5041.
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