Police have found the truck of missing mother Leila Cavett, whose toddler son was found walking alone near a Florida apartment complex.
The white Chevy pickup was found in a Walmart parking lot Wednesday night in Hollywood, a suburb outside Fort Lauderdale. Authorities said they had received information the 21-year-old mother may have been seen there, but did not elaborate.
Her 2-year-old son was found wandering Sunday morning in a Miramar apartment complex, about 15 miles from where her truck was found three days later. Miramar police have now turned over the investigation to Hollywood Police Department investigators.
Cavett's family say they are mystified as to why the young mother, who lives in Georgia, may have traveled to Florida without telling them. Police have said Cavett may have driven from Alabama, where she has relatives, to Florida.
Her family said such an unannounced journey was not in the mom's nature, and that she would not have left her son alone.
“She would’ve never left her baby, never,” Cavett’s grandmother, Carol Ferdinand, told WPLG-TV. “That’s my granddaughter, I know her.”
The barefoot child wore only a T-shirt and soiled diaper. After Miramar police publicized his photo, Cavett’s family came forward, and said his name was Kamdyn. He is now in foster care, police said.
A man who said he was the father of Kamdyn named Daniel Lee West told the Miami Herald he contacted the Miramar Police Department to claim his little boy, but was told he may have to provide proof of parentage by taking a DNA test.
“I just want Leila and Kamdyn safe,” West told the newspaper. “Leila is a great mom. She would do anything for our son.”
He said he is waiting on the Florida Department of Children and Families for guidance on next steps. “I am coming there as soon as they do," he said.
Cavett’s mother, sisters, brother, paternal grandparents and an uncle have all arrived in South Florida to help search, the station reported.
Detectives are asking anyone who may have information on this missing person to call the Hollywood Police Department at 954-764-4357 (HELP) or 954-967-4411. Tipsters can email or text to email@example.com.