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Missing

Deborah Lyyn Sanders










Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021



Missing Person Case September 2021


Deborah, approximately 1984; Age when reported missing: 16 (approximately 1998); Odell Sheppard




Date reported missing : 09/24/1984

Missing location (approx) :
Chicago, Illinois
Missing classification : Endangered Missing
Gender : Female
Ethnicity :
Black


DOB : 10/15/1982 (38)
Age at the time of disappearance: 1 year old
Height / Weight : 3'0, 50 pounds
Distinguishing characteristics, birthmarks, tattoos : African-American female. Black hair, brown eyes. Deborah has a scar on her right ear. Some accounts spell her first name "Debra" or her middle name "Lynn."





Information on the case from local sources, may or may not be correct : Deborah was initially abducted by her non-custodial father, Odell Sheppard, from her residence in Chicago, Illinois on September 24, 1984. Deborah's mother, Norell Sanders, told authorities that Sheppard called her and said he was going to take Deborah and Norell would never see her again. He subsequently arrived Norell's home and proceeded to argue and struggle with Norell over Deborah. He then struck Norell several times, grabbed the child and left the home.
The couple had never married and they weren't living together in 1984. Norell stated she notified the police, but they were reluctant to take action because the law was unclear about her custodial rights as an unmarried mother. (She later went to court and obtained full custody of her daughter.)
Deborah was last seen two weeks after her abduction, when her father took her to a family member's funeral in Memphis, Tennessee. A photo of Odell is posted with this case summary.
Sheppard allowed Norell to speak to her daughter once over the phone a few days after Sheppard abducted the child. That was the last time anyone has heard from Deborah. On October 1, Sheppard called Norell again and threatened to kill both her and Deborah because police were questioning his family. He called her a third time in November and offered to return Deborah in exchange for $2,000 in cash, money Norell didn't have. According to her, at one point Sheppard told her the next time she saw Deborah, Deborah would be "in a pine box." Sheppard denies having ever made that statement.
Sheppard was arrested in Tennessee in late 1985, but he didn't have Deborah with him. He claimed he returned the child to her mother's care in December 1984, but Norell said this wasn't true and none of Norell's relatives have seen Deborah since her initial abduction.
Sheppard was convicted of child abduction in 1986 and sentenced to three years in prison. He was released in 1987 after serving less than half his sentence, and ordered to produce the child in court within three days. After he failed to do so, he served ten years and three months in jail for contempt of court for refusing to divulge where his daughter was located.
This may have been the longest recorded sentence for contempt of court in United States history. Sheppard repeatedly said he left Deborah with Norell and didn't know the child's whereabouts, but the courts did not believe him. Norell said she believed Sheppard refused to disclose Deborah's location because he wanted her to suffer.
Deborah's Social Security number hasn't been used since her September 1984 abduction. Norell died of kidney failure on January 24, 1998, at the Age at the time of disappearance: of 45. She left behind three other children besides Deborah. Sheppard was released from jail a few days after Norell's death, and maintains his innocence to his day. Deborah's whereabouts remain unknown, and her case was closed after Norell's death.


Other information and links : ncy

Illinois State Police
847-294-4400



September 2021 updates and sources

Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, NCIC. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (Missing Children’s Statistics One Missing Child Is One Too Many The lack of a common definition of “missing child,” and a common response to the issue, results in few reliable statistics on the scope of the problem around the world. Even with this challenge, we know that: In Australia, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Australian Federal Police, National Coordination Centre. In Canada, an estimated 45,288 children are reported missing each year. Government of Canada, Canada’s Missing – 2015 Fast Fact Sheet. In Germany, an estimated 100,000 children are reported missing each year. Initiative Vermisste Kinder. In India, an estimated 96,000 children go missing each year. Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Missing Children of India. In Jamaica, an estimated 1,984 children were reporting missing in 2015. Jamaica’s Office of Children’s Registry In Russia, an estimated 45,000 children were reported missing in 2015. Interview with Pavel Astakhov MIA “Russia Today”, Apr. 4, 2016. In Spain, an estimated 20,000 children are reported missing every year. Spain Joins EU Hotline for Missing Children, Sep. 22, 2010. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 112,853 children are reported missing every year. National Crime Agency, UK Missing Persons Bureau. In the United States, an estimated 460,000 children are reported missing every year. Federal Bureau of Investigation, NCIC. This, however, is only a snapshot of the problem. In many countries, statistics on missing children are not even available; and, unfortunately, even available statistics may be inaccurate due to: under-reporting/under-recognition; inflation; incorrect database entry of case information; and deletion of records once a case is closed. The lack of numbers, and the discrepancy in the numbers that do exist, is one of the key reasons why ICMEC developed and advocates for the Model Missing Child Framework, which assists countries with building strong, well-rounded national responses, and facilitates more efficient investigations, management, and resolution of missing children cases. We firmly believe that one missing child is one too many, and we are committed to improving the global understanding of and response to missing and abducted children. Here is a look at missing children in the United States. There are several different types of missing children: runaways, family abductions, lost or “thrown away” and non-family abductions. Advances in technology, communications through public alerts and greater cooperation from law enforcement have facilitated the recovery process. Statistics According to the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (NCIC) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.) Missing Person File, there are 89,637 active missing person records, of which juveniles under the age of 18 account for 30,396 (34%) of the records. (as of December 31, 2020) AMBER Alert “AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) Alerts are emergency messages broadcast when a law enforcement agency determines that a child has been abducted and is in imminent danger. The broadcasts include information about the child and the abductor, including physical descriptions as well as information about the abductor’s vehicle - which could lead to the child’s recovery.” The AMBER Alert system began in 1996 and was named in honor of Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old who was abducted in Arlington, Texas, and murdered. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands have AMBER Alert plans in place to help find missing children in danger. As of December 2020, the AMBER Alert program has been credited with the safe recovery of 1029 children.
Illinois State Police
The Associated Press
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch
The Chicago Sun-Times
The New York Times
The Norwalk Hour
Sanders v. Shephard











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