DNA test ordered for Aniah Blanchard kidnapping suspect; Witness regrets not coming forward sooner
OPELIKA, Ala. (WBRC) - Ibraheem Yazeed was back in court Wednesday morning in Lee County.
Yazeed, 30, is the man charged with kidnapping 19-year-old Aniah Blanchard. The ruling comes days after the state filed a motion for the test to be completed. District Judge Russell K. Bush also denied bond for Yazeed.
“If you get up for a new case, no matter how insignificant it is, you can have your bond revoked on that case and denied bond on the new case.” Roger Appell, Birmingham defense attorney.
Court records show a large amount of Aniah’s blood was found in her SUV. The judge also ordered Yazeed to present a DNA sample for the prosecution. Appell said this could be crucial.
“It could be the whole case. I know they have evidence putting him at the scene and some evidence of seeing him getting into the car but in this day and age, DNA is something everyone knows about.”
The key witness for the prosecution was Auburn Detective Josh Mixon. Mixon said video showed Yazeed at the convenience store at the same time as Aniah on October 23rd.
“While he was getting change he has his hand out for the change. He looks over his shoulder at her and watches her walk past,” he said.
One courtroom witness said Yazeed appeared to shake his head in disgust at points during the court hearing.
Detective Mixon testified that a witness saw Yazeed force Aniah Blanchard into a vehicle, The detective says the man’s female companion told him not to report it, saying “stay out of it its none of your business.” A decision the witness later regretted.
“He started breaking down and crying. I think he was remorseful he hadn’t come forward sooner. He recently lost a child in October due to a miscarriage, that was girl,” Mixon said.
The case will be sent to the Lee County grand jury.
A court hearing will be held next month, December 4th to determine if a gag order in the case will lifted.
“I doubt it will be overturned because of the high visibility of the case,” Appell said.
Yazeed was taken into custody in Escambia County, Fla., on Nov. 7. He was transported to Lee County several days later and made his first court appearance in Alabama on Nov. 10.
Aniah was last seen Oct. 23 in Auburn at a convenience store on South College Street and was reported missing the following day. Her CR-V was found at a Montgomery apartment complex on Oct. 26.
Surveillance video and photos placed Yazeed in the convenience store at the same time as Aniah. A witness told authorities he saw Yazeed force Blanchard into a car, and an affidavit states blood evidence “indicative of someone suffering a life-threatening injury,” was found in the passenger compartment of Blanchard’s 2017 Honda CR-V.
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