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Damon Reed | Gallery To The Neighborhood

Gallery To The Neighborhood

by Nolan Hawk

Still Searching addresses a pressing issue that does not get the media coverage it deserves. Outside the realm of true crime “fandom,” missing persons cases are rarely discussed. And sadly, it is easy to see why.

They are such a common occurrence that many simply choose to look the other way. According to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons (NamUS) database, more than 600,000 persons of all ages go missing every year. And roughly 4,400 unidentified bodies are recovered every year.

Chicago in particular has been hit hard with missing persons cases. A quarter of people who go missing in Chicago are young (11 to 21 year-old) Black women.

Additionally, Black people of all ages make up two-thirds of the city’s total open missing persons cases. This discrepancy is further reflected in the fact that Black youth are more susceptible to sex trafficking than any other demographic, according to a 2013 study by the Crimes Against Children Research Center.

Without media pressure, law enforcement oftentimes drags its feet in investigating missing people. Therefore, Reed’s work is not only important, but it is necessary. In Reed’s own words, “I want to show the world that, yes, we are still searching, and we’re gonna keep going until we find answers, until we find resolution.”

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