Details of Disappearance
Christopher was last seen at the Martin Luther King Jr. Towers playground located at 113th Street and Lenox Avenue in Harlem in the New York borough of Manhattan on May 18, 1989. His mother had been with him in the park and decided to go to the store for food, but she did not have Christopher's stroller with her, so she left him in the care of of several relatives at the park.
When Christopher's mother returned half an hour later, he was gone. The relatives told Christopher's mother that they had seen him playing with a red ball. Christopher had not brought a red ball to the park and his mother could not find one in the vicinity. It had apparently vanished along with her son.
A seven-year-old boy from Christopher's neighborhood told authorities he saw Christopher walking on west 111th Street later in the day. According to the witness, Christopher was accompanied by an unidentified African-American male. Christopher has never been seen again. A sketch of the man he was with is posted with this case summary. He is described as African-American, between 25 and 30 years old, six feet tall and thin, with dreadlocked hair.
Christopher's case shares striking similarities with the disappearance of Shane Walker
, who disappeared from the same area of the same playground in August 1989, three months after Christopher did.
Both boys were African-American toddlers and lived in the same apartment building. Both disappeared on the same day of the week (Thursday) at roughly the same time of day (Shane at 5:00 p.m. and Christopher at 7:00 p.m.) In addition, just before his disappearance, Christopher was playing the same two children who were with Shane when he was last seen. Police still aren't sure whether the cases are related, however.
There were rumors that Christopher's mother had sold him for drugs, or that he was taken because of a drug debt. She stated she used to use crack cocaine, but had been in recovery for years by the time her son disappeared, and didn't owe anyone money. Christopher's family members took lie detector tests, but the results were inconclusive.
Authorities investigated the possibility that the boys' cases were connected to a black market baby-ring operation and that the infant Andre Bryant
, who was abducted from Brooklyn in March 1989, was possibly another victim. All of the children are African-American.
The three cases remain unsolved and it is unclear what happened to any of the missing children.