FBI joins search for mother of toddler found wandering alone
This past Sunday marked two weeks since Leila Cavett’s two-year-old son was found wandering alone outside an apartment complex in Miramar, Florida. But there is still no sign of his 21-year-old mother and now the FBI has joined the search.
Leila, of Dawsonville, Georgia, was last seen on July 25, 2020, in Hollywood, Florida, driving a white mid-to-late 90s Chevy Silverado 3500 pickup truck with a red tailgate and a “Baby on Board” sign on the passenger window, according to Miramar Police.
Leila’s two-year-old son, Kamdyn, was found the next day wandering around outside an apartment complex in the 1860 block of SW 68th Avenue, in Miramar, Florida, according to Miramar Police. He was barefoot and wearing only a t-shirt and a diaper.
Ebony Williams, who lives at the complex, had just arrived home Sunday morning when she spotted the toddler outside and then realized he was alone.
“I asked him where his mommy was and he just kind of pointed everywhere,” Ebony told reporters at a press conference the next day. “I reached out my hand for him, he grabbed my hand. And I just walked around the complex hoping I would find somebody looking for him, or calling his name.”
But when no one claimed the child, Ebony called 911.
Miramar Police responded and searched for hours that Sunday, knocking on doors, attempting to find the boy’s parents, but they were nowhere to be found.
As the day passed, police became very concerned when no one stepped forward to claim the child, Public Information Officer Tania Rues told Dateline.
“Within an hour two -- three tops -- someone usually comes forward,” Rues said. Rues said photos of the child were posted to social media, which eventually made their way to family members who called police more than a day after the child was found.
Leila Cavett’s sisters, who live in Alabama, drove to Florida when they realized their nephew had been found alone and that their sister was missing. They told NBC affiliate WTVJ that Leila lives in Dawsonville, Georgia, but had been staying with family in Atlanta, and doesn’t know anyone in Florida. The sisters added that they haven’t seen Leila since a FaceTime call on July 17.
“It’s not out of character for her to go places, but it’s definitely out of character for her to be in Florida," her sister, Gina Lewis, told WTVJ in July while they were in Florida to search for Leila. "We’re in Alabama, she lives in Georgia. If it’s not those two states, we don’t understand why she would be here, for sure.”
Family members told WTVJ that Leila’s son, Kamdyn, remains in child protective services, but they have been allowed to video chat with the toddler through Zoom.
"He misses his mom and he’s so confused, but we assured him that we’re coming to get him as soon as we can," Leila’s mother, Tina Kirby said. “This is my worst nightmare.”
On July 28, Leila’s white Chevy Silverado 3500 pickup truck was found abandoned in the parking lot of a Walmart in Hollywood, Florida, approximately two miles from where her son had been found the day before.
At that point, Hollywood Police took over the search for Leila. They have requested assistance from the public in locating Leila, however they have not responded to calls from Dateline NBC.
Last week, the FBI announced they have stepped in to assist the Hollywood Police Department in the search.
“The FBI is involved in the investigation working alongside local law enforcement,” Public Affairs Specialist for FBI Miami Jim Marshall confirmed to Dateline.
Family members are working with investigators to gain access to Leila’s social media accounts for clues on her disappearance. They have also hired an attorney, who has published updates on his Facebook Page. Requests for comment from the attorney were not returned as of Monday.
Leila’s family is pleading with the community to keep an eye out for her and call police with any information.
“If you know anything about the whereabouts of my child, please contact your local authorities,” Leila’s mother, Tina told WTVJ last Thursday. “We just want my daughter back safely.”
Leila is described as being 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighing about 110 pounds. She has brown, shoulder-length hair and brown eyes. She has a tattoo that reads “Kamdyn” on her right arm and a small tattoo of a Christian fish symbol on her right wrist.
Anyone who may have information on Leila’s whereabouts is asked to contact the Hollywood Police Department at (954) 764-4357 or 954-967-4411. Tips can be emailed or texted to email@example.com. You can also contact the Broward Crime Stoppers at www.browardcrimestoppers.org.