LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A family is desperately trying to find a 18-year-old Malachai Whiteman who disappeared in Los Angeles during a bus trip from Sacramento.
“I need my son, I love my son so much,” Samantha Ridgebear, Whiteman’s mom, said. “I can’t lose him.”
Ridgebear said she was heartbroken, because she hasn’t seen or heard from her son in more than a week.
She said Whiteman boarded a Greyhound bus in Sacramento on Dec. 29 headed to Las Vegas to live with his aunt, and he was supposed to change buses at the Greyhound station in downtown Los Angeles, but there was no record that he got on that second bus.
“We checked for ourselves, we verified,” Ridgebear said. “We seen for our own eyes his ticket is still there.”
Ridgebear flew in from Omaha, Nebraska, in an effort to find out what happened to her son after he got to Los Angeles. She said her son, who had recently been homeless, was mugged right before his trip and had no form of identification or money.
“They took his cell phone, and they took his bag, his food, everything,” she said. “So that there tells me he came with nothing.”
Ridgebear, who is Native American, filed a missing person report in Sacramento and when members of the Indigenous Women Rising group got wind of the story, they offered to help pass out fliers and gave her a place to stay.
She said her son is a kindhearted, shy teen, and she’s hoping for his safe return.
“I love you,” she said. “I’m praying that you’re safe, out of harm and evil’s way.”
Whiteman is described as a Native American male, 6-feet-1-inch tall and weighs approximately 175 pounds.
If anyone has information on Whiteman, they’re asked to call Sacramento police.