The search for Quinton Simon has been escalated to a criminal investigation
SAVANNAH, Ga. (NewsNation) — Authorities have now declared the case of a missing Georgia toddler a criminal investigation after he went missing last week.
On Monday, Savannah police drained a swimming pool while an extensive search intensified.
“We continue to use all investigative resources at our disposal to locate little Quinton,” Chief Jeff Hadley said in a news conference Monday. “We conducted multiple interviews, executed multiple search warrants, and searched numerous specific geographic areas.”
According to his mother Lelani Simon, 20-month-old Quinton Simon was reportedly last seen at his home at 6am on October 5
The FBI is involved, and authorities have spent the past five days extensively searching the area near the families’ home.
“Anything can help. Anyone who knows anything — he’s just a baby,” Billie Howell, Quinton’s grandmother, said while speaking on NewsNation’s Rush Hour on Monday.
Meanwhile, the grandfather says the mother’s story doesn’t make sense.
“She’s lied to us so many times. I do not know. It’s hard to say, but she just loves to lie,” said Quinton’s grandfather, Thomas Howell.
The police have been to the family home in the past. According to police reports, family members say Quintin’s mother has a history of stealing and used the money to buy drugs.
A babysitter for Quinton, Diana McCarta, told NewsNation that she received a text message from Simon at 5:30 a.m. on the day of Quinton’s disappearance, saying that McCarta didn’t have to babysit him. Later that morning, McCarta said she received a text message from Quinton’s grandmother asking if she had seen Quinton.
“I got a text at 9 a.m. that said, ‘Have you seen Quinton?'” McCarta said. “I go to their house immediately and try to help them search, but they didn’t want to. So I just waited like everyone else.”
Simon called 911 shortly thereafter and was reported missing around 9 a.m
“My heart is broken. I’m not his mother, I’m not his family, but I love him very much and I just don’t know what could have happened. The police have done a very good job in the search. Where does a 1- year old? You covered a lot of ground,” McCarta said.
According to court documents obtained by a local television news station, Simon’s mother, Billie Jo Howell, and her husband have custody of Quinton and his three-year-old brother.
Simon, Simon’s boyfriend and Howell live in the same house with Quinton and two other children. According to NewsNation affiliate WSAV, Howell requested that Simon and her boyfriend be evicted in early September.
A day before the eviction was requested, an incident report said Simon and Howell were involved in an argument. It’s not known what the fight was about, but Simon told officers she was on probation and didn’t want any trouble. WSAV doesn’t know what this probation is for.
A report obtained by WSAV states that when police officers spoke to Simon’s brother, they told them that Simon had stolen money and used it to buy drugs in the past.
Police said they were working 20-hour days looking for Quinton.
Local authorities and the FBI are searching nearby dumpsters, drains and ponds. The police have already searched the house.
“The search for Quinton Simon is our top priority and the intensity of our work is as strong as it has been since the day he disappeared,” police said in a Facebook post over the weekend.
NewsNation affiliate WSAV contributed to this report.
Suggest a correction
https://wgntv.com/news/nexstar-media-wire/search-for-missing-georgia-toddler-quinton-simon-upgraded-to-criminal-investigation/ The search for Quinton Simon has been escalated to a criminal investigation