Less than two days after she was abducted off a Germantown street, Carlesha Freeland-Gaither’s parents stood before a packed room and pleaded for their daughter’s return.
“Please give me my child,” her mother Keisha Gaither said through sobs at the 35th District police headquarters. “Please let her go. Please give her back.”
Police said Freeland-Gaither’s debit card was used at a stand-alone ATM in Aberdeen, Md. at 6:01 a.m. Monday. Surveillance footage from the ATM shows a male wearing dark clothing using her card.
Police — the FBI, Maryland police and the Northwest Philadelphia Detective Division — are looking into whether the male shown there is the same individual seen dragging the victim into a car on Sunday night, according to Chief Inspector Dennis Wilson.
Family members said Freeland-Gaither did have contact with a man in Maryland who resembles the description of kidnapper.
Freeland-Gaither lived in southern Maryland with her paternal grandmother, Ana Mulero, from the ages of four to 19.
She moved back to Philadelphia to be closer to her mother and siblings and pursue a higher-paying job, Mulero said.
Audio from the footage of the abduction has not been released.
According to police, that audio includes sounds of glass breaking and Freeland-Gaither yelling for help, but there is no indication from her screams as to whether she knew her captor.
Freeland-Gaither dropped her eyeglasses and cellphone into the street and kicked out the driver-side rear window before the car pulled away.
Reward fund growing
A reward totalling $42,000 is being offered for her return.
The FBI announced a reward of $25,000 on Tuesday, adding to $10,000 from the City of Philadelphia; $5,000 from the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5 and $2,000 from the Citizens Crime Commission.