Remains believed to be those of UFC fighter's missing stepdaughter, DA says
AUBURN, Ala. - Authorities say they have "good reason" to believe human remains found in Alabama are those of missing teen Aniah Blanchard.
Blanchard, 19, whose stepfather is UFC participant Walt Harris of metro Birmingham, was last seen Oct. 23 at a convenience store in Auburn.
On Monday, search crews discovered human remains off of County Road 2 in Macon County, which is less than an hour outside Montgomery.
“I can confirm that human remains have been found and we have good reason to suspect they are that of Aniah Blanchard,” District Attorney Brandon Hughes told media outlets Monday.
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Two men, Ibraheem Yazeed and Antwain Shamaer Fisher, have been charged in connection to Blanchard's disappearance. Fisher was arrested on Nov. 23. Yazeed was arrested on Nov. 8.
Blanchard's black Honda CRV was found abandoned more than 50 miles (90 kilometers) away at an apartment complex in Montgomery, Alabama. Auburn police Detective Josh Mixon said Blanchard’s blood was found in the car, and it appeared she had suffered a life-threatening injury.
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Mixon testified that convenience store video footage showed a man buying a beverage look over at Blanchard. He said tipsters later identified the man as Ibraheem Yazeed, 29, and a man at the store told investigators he saw Yazeed force Blanchard into her car and drive away.
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Prosecutors told a Lee County judge that a male’s DNA was found in Blanchard’s car, and the judge ordered Yazeed on Wednesday to submit a DNA sample.
Lee County District Judge Russell Bush denied bond for Yazeed, who also is charged with kidnapping.
Ibraheem Yazeed (Central Alabama Crimestoppers / Facebook)
Bush said the case against Yazeed can proceed to a grand jury.