This is seriously alarming!
Police in Florida have revealed an active search is underway to find six Haitians who mysteriously vanished while visiting the state for the Special Olympics in Orlando this month.
This week, the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office announced that Oriol Jean, 18, Anderson Petit-Frère, 18, Peter Mianovich Berlus, 19, Nicholson Fontilus, 20, Steevenson Jacquet, 24, and Antione Joseph Mithon, 32 all disappeared on June 6.
Officials say that the missing group were all members of Haiti’s Special Olympics delegation who were competing in the soccer competition. The six were last seen at around 2:30 p.m. in Kissimmee; all of them reportedly turned in their hotel room keys, left their personal belongings, and then vanished without a trace.
The sheriff’s office said the reason the group left the games is unknown, adding that it’s now investigating the matter all as a “missing person’s case.” The department shared in a statement:
“We are in communication with Walt Disney World, Special Olympics, and our Law Enforcement and Federal partners. At this time, we believe this is an isolated event and do not suspect foul play. We are asking anyone with information to please contact the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office.”
The Special Olympics released a statement of its own, telling CNN that its “foremost concern” was the well-being of the missing group.
The statement read:
“The individuals are all adults, five of whom are not Special Olympics athletes and one who is an adult with intellectual disability. The well-being of these delegates is our foremost concern. Local authorities have indicated they have no reason to believe the health and safety of any of the individuals is at risk. To expand the reach and effectiveness of law enforcement’s efforts to locate these individuals, they have been reported as missing persons.”
On Wednesday, a rep for the Special Olympics told People the group consists of “one Special Olympics athlete, one coach, and four Unified partners, all of whom are adults.” (For those who don’t know, “Unified partners” are people without intellectual disabilities who play on the same teams as Special Olympics athletes.)
The 2022 Special Olympics began on June 5 and will continue through June 12 in Orlando. The event will include more than 5,500 athletes and coaches and will welcome over 100,000 spectators.
Hopefully the group is tracked down soon.
[Image via Osceola County Sheriff’s Office]