Ameera Deadrick was just 8 years old when she vanished without a trace sometime in 2016, from Houston, Texas.
The mystery surrounding Ameera’s disappearance has tormented her family. Her mother, Tiara McWilliams, said she’s been living through a never-ending nightmare, constantly wondering what happened to her precious little girl. “I am struggling every single day with grief,” said Tiara. “I just want peace. Someone knows something.”
Sergeant Tony Carter, who works in the Missing Person’s Unit at the Texas Attorney General’s Office, said Tiara deserves answers. “She wants to know where her daughter is. She is a mother, and she yearns for her child.”
Sergent Carter said Ameera’s disappearance remains an active investigation. In a recent interview with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) he pleaded for the public’s help. Carter said he hopes the age progression image created by a forensic artist at NCMEC of what Ameera may look like today will generate new clues. She would now be 14 years old.
Sergeant Carter speaks about Ameera's case.
Three years before Ameera went missing, Tiara was living in Illinois with Ameera. She reluctantly consented to allow Ameera to spend the summer of 2013 with her father, Anthony Deadrick, and his girlfriend, LaShandra Spikes, in Houston.
Tiara said that when it was time for Ameera to return home, her father refused to let her go, despite her pleas.
In 2014, Tiara said she traveled to Houston to take her daughter back home, but Ameera’s father would not let her return with her mother. Tiara says she had no choice but to go home without Ameera. Police said at the time, there was no custody agreement in place and Tiara did not turn to the courts for help.
Over the next couple of years, Tiara visited her little girl several times and remained in touch with her over text messages and phone calls. She said she tried relentlessly to convince Ameera’s father to let her return home, but he stood firm on his decision to keep Ameera in Texas with him. Then in the summer of 2016, Tiara lost all contact with Ameera, her father Anthony Deadrick, and his girlfriend, Lashandra. Concerned, Tiara notified police.
Through an investigation it was discovered that Anthony Deadrick was arrested in November of 2016 on unrelated charges and was serving time in a Houston prison, which begged the question, where was 8-year-old Ameera?
Sergeant Carter explained that detectives interviewed Deadrick in prison. He told them he had befriended a woman in Waco, Texas and had left Ameera in her care. “Her biological father says he gave custody of Ameera to a lady that he had met at a convenience store somewhere in the Waco area,” explained Carter. “He said her name was Linda, but some people knew her as ‘Tootie,’ but we could not locate or verify that this woman even existed.”
Tiara now lives in Texas and continues to search for her daughter. Ameera’s father has been released from prison, and according to police, he still says that he gave Ameera to a woman named Linda. Ameera’s case was featured on billboards in Texas and over the years Carter said his office has investigated every tip they received, but the mystery of what happened to Ameera in 2016 remains.
If you or anyone you know has any information on Ameera Deadrick or may know of a woman named “Linda” or “Tootie,” who lived in the Waco, Texas area, please contact Segreant Tony Carter with the Office of Texas Attorney General at 512-936-1673. You can also contact NCMEC at 1-800-THE LOST (1-800-843-5678).
View Ameera’s Missing Poster here: https://www.missingkids.org/poster/NCMC/1356363/1/screen