Missing Mom Found in Trunk Should Have Been Found Days Ago

Heartbreaking 12

Ebony JacksonThe search for Oklahoma City mom Ebony Jackson Shelton that started when her 3-month-old son was found abandoned in the hallway of a strange apartment complex has ended, but it's not good news. The body of the missing mom has been found in St. Louis, Missouri, of all places ... in the trunk of her own car. And now for the kicker: the car had sat for days, abandoned, and no one thought to look inside.

If that's not a "see something, say something," failure right there ...

Ebony Jackson Shelton's heartbreaking story started making big news a week ago when her little boy was found in his carseat in the hallway of a random apartment complex in St. Louis. We heard about this young mom who survived childhood cancer and several surgeries, who was devoted to her baby boy. Family said she'd left her home in Oklahoma City to visit relatives where she planned to show little Donovan Prom off, but she never made it. But this girl had been a fighter her whole life. We kept hoping she'd make it through this too.

Now the only good news we have is that she didn't just suddenly abandon her child for no reason. That's not enough, folks.

The police in St. Louis are making public apologies to the family for not updating them on the progress of the investigation, and they have a witness who admits that Jackson Shelton's car -- the Mitsubishi Galant where they found her body -- had been parked on a street of abandoned houses for days on end, but no one said a word. Even though it had out-of-state plates. Even though the search for this woman had been made public. Even though it was in a strange place.

Why not? Are people scared? Do they just not care?

Police say Ebony died of a single gunshot wound, but they won't say when, at least not yet, and there's no one in custody.

Still, you can't help but wonder, if someone had said something about that odd car in an odd place sooner, would this woman still be alive? Would this little boy still have his Mom? Could this tragedy have been prevented?

When tragedy happens in America, we do such a good job of coming together. Look at the way we came out for the people of Newtown. Why can't we do for each other every day the way we do in hard times?

If only America had community spirit all of the time, maybe our communities would be safer.

In the meantime, a little boy will have to grow up without his mom, and after yet another tragedy, people are forced to come together. They're raising money to create a reward fund for information leading to Ebony's killer. It's something ... but it would have been better if this all could have been avoided. 

Do you say something when you see something? Why not?


Image via police handout

death, crime, missing person


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dirti... dirtiekittie

if this young woman died from a single gunshot wound, i doubt someone reporting the car sooner could have saved her. add to that - what kind of neighborhood was the car left in? was her destination St Louis? if so, did the PD specifically know about her being missing and her car? so many questions. 

as for the neighbors calling about a suspicious car - well, i lived in a neighborhood once where that exact scenario happened. an out of state plated car was parked outside of my house for days on end. on the third day, i called the city. they referred me to the pd. i called the pd. they told me it had to be unattended for 72 hours before they would do anything. i told them it had been sitting there 3 days. they said "well, this is your first call. call us back in 72 hours." in a city with crimes like murder, rampant gang problems and far more "important" matters, an abandoned car falls pretty far down the list of "things to handle right away". 

the truth is, even if someone called, nobody could have known what was in that trunk. it's a terrible tragedy and my heart goes out to the family. 

Phyll... PhyllisGB

Living in STL scared the crap out of me.  Gunshots were pretty common in my husband's/daughter's school neighborhood

nonmember avatar truth

She was not blond and blue eyes woman so I guess her missing was not that important.

MyGir... MyGirlsAbbyLiz

Odds are she was already dead when she went into the truck

flowe... flower_momma

Its the holiday season, I wouldn't think twice if I saw a strange car parked on my street for a few days. I am so sorry that this woman died, and that her sweet son is motherless, but I don't see how society failed her here. 

nonmember avatar Momof4boys

My stolen truck sat on a street for 13 days. An owner of a house on that street reported my truck to the police 3 times before he got sick of it and searched it for ID and then found my # and called me directly. What would it have mattered if it were reported earlier? This article doesn't even make sense. There's not enough details. So awful for her family. My heart goes out.

nonmember avatar MrsMeredith4

Im a white mother of 4 and the problem here is what our society has come to. Im sure the police department viewed it as a black struggling mother leaving her kid on a doorstep to be better taken care of and her running off. They don't care unless its an upper class white mother living the "American Dream" that goes missing. Our world is full of idiots and bigots. My thoughts and prayers go out to her son and family.

nonmember avatar dianec

I agree with all the poated comments. I don't think anything could have saved the woman's life once she was in trouble. What I do think is that finding the car earlier possibly could have helped the police get a jump on finding her killer(s). I still can't come to gripps with the lien-holder of the car refusing to give the police any info (from the tracking devise installed in the car) until he was served with a court order to do so. That info would have gotten the police there days before she was actually found. I can't think of any reason not to help the police in this type of situation exept you don't want to get involved. I'm all for consumer privacy concerns but there was an abandoned bady and missing mom. You can bet he would have accessed it in a New York minute if a payment was missed which is the reason the tracking system was in the car to start with.

nonmember avatar Bailey

I was held at gunpoint 5 times while living in St. Louis. The wonderful areas with martini lounges, sushi, and coffee houses are literally 2 blocks away from horrific ghetto. If she was located anywhere near the Central West End or downtown, there would be no way of identifying an out of town vehicle and reporting it. Everyone parks along the side of the street. And sometimes for long distances if it's in a shopping/bar/lounge/club area, which could also easily be in front of some abandoned houses. I don't see how it would be easy to spot this vehicle much less report it to authorities.

nonmember avatar Cathy

I live a mile away from where they found the baby! Things like this make me sick- i know for a fact that St. Louis Police are lazy and not that bright, they rather spend there time doing traffic violations..
Only state i know that after calling the police because someone went crazy and tried to pull a gun on me, and i had to go to court.. wtf Saint louiss is a horrible city.. i am trying to find a way out of this state for the best of my children!! I think this women was a fighter, and she protected her baby! My heart goes out to them!

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