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Although African Americans make up just 13 percent of the U.S. population, we account for 33 percent of the missing in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s database. Cases involving African Americans also tend to receive less media coverage than missing Whites, with missing men of color getting even less attention.

NewsOne has partnered with the Black and Missing Foundation and TV One to focus on the crisis of missing African Americans.

To be a part of the solution, NewsOne will profile a missing person weekly and provide tips about how to keep your loved ones safe and what to do if someone goes missing, while TV One‘s newest show, “Find Our Missing,” hosted by award-winning actress S. Epatha Merkerson, tells these stories in visual form.


Althedia Vernon Vaught

Case Type: Endangered

Date of Birth: July 7, 1967

Missing Date: Dec. 2, 2009

Age Now: 46

Missing City: Tulsa

Missing State: Oklahoma

Case Number: 2009-004303

Gender: Female

Race: Black

Complexion: Medium

Height: 5-6

Weight: 150

Hair Color: Black

Hair Length: Shoulder length

Eye Color: Brown

Wear Glasses or Contacts: No

Location Last Seen: Althedia Vernon Vaught, 41 , was last seen on January 19, 2009 at 11:30 p.m. at her residence.

Circumstances of Disappearance: A family member reported that Vaught received a telephone call on her cell phone and then immediately left the residence without indicating where she was going.

No family member has had contact with her since that date. On January 24, 2009 at approximately 3:30 a.m., Althedia Vaught’s vehicle, a 1995 dark green Infinity J30, was discovered inside a parking garage at Hillcrest Hospital, 1120 S. Utica Ave.

“The two guys that were persons of interest searched their cars and houses and found no blood or anything,” said Vaught’s daughter Teanna Thomas.

A video in the parking lot where Vaught’s car was found showed a white truck with three triangles on the side pulling in before Vaught arrived and then departing later. That vehicle or driver has never been identified and police would love to find the driver of that vehicle.

Unfortunately, police believe Vaught is likely dead.

Her son Thomas told News On 6 earlier this year that his mother’s disappearance has torn the family apart, with one brother behind bars. Vaught also missed the birth of a second grandchild since she’s been missing. Her family does not believe Vaught is dead.

“She’s a strong woman,” Thomas said. “I know she’s still alive out there somewhere.”

The family is desperate to know exactly what happened to Vaught.

“It would be very important to us,” Thomas said. “It would save a family. We’re losing my brother. My sister is struggling. I’m struggling. It would save a whole family.”

Last Seen Wearing: Last seen wearing pajamas.

Anyone with information about Althedia Vernon Vaught’s whereabouts may contact Crime Stoppers at (918) 596-COPS or the Black and Missing Foundation’s confidential Tip Line.