VA police are looking for missing store clerk Ahrea’l Smith


Ahrea’l Smith, 28, remains missing after disappearing from the convenience store where she worked as a clerk on Jan. 12, Virginia police said. A suspect has been arrested.

Screenshot of Northumberland County Sheriff’s Office via Facebook

Virginia authorities are looking for a 28-year-old woman who has been missing for days after disappearing from work.

Ahrea’l Smith was last seen on the night of Wednesday, Jan. 12, in surveillance footage closing for the night at the Little Sue convenience store in Claraville, Va., where she works as a clerk, according to the sheriff’s office. of Northumberland County. A suspect in her disappearance, Tyrone Samuel, 50, was arrested on Saturday January 15.

But the sheriff’s office said Smith was still missing.

He wrote Monday, January 17, on Facebook that a total reward of $9,400 is being offered by multiple companies and organizations for information on Smith’s whereabouts. On Tuesday, Jan. 18, the sheriff’s office said it was continuing the search for Smith with federal, state and local law enforcement. He asked “civilian search teams” to suspend their search for the day and give them space to work.

At around 4:45 a.m. on Thursday, January 13, the sheriff’s office received a call that “began a search” for Smith.

The sheriff’s office reviewed surveillance footage of the store and found that at 9:05 p.m. on January 12, Smith got out and started her car, then began closing the store for the night, the sheriff said. Northumberland County, Johnny Beauchamp, at a press conference Friday. January 14.

At 9:18 p.m., she went outside and got into another vehicle, then got out of the vehicle and went back inside, where she armed the store’s alarm and locked the door, Beauchamp said. . The driver of the vehicle she got into was questioned by detectives and is not considered a suspect.

Smith then grabbed a garbage bag from the front porch and headed for the dumpsters, which were out of sight of the surveillance camera.

“She was not seen on camera again,” Beauchamp said.

The next morning, another employee arrived at the store to find Smith’s car still running.

Virginia State Police then showed up with a K9 unit and followed the dumpsters about 100 yards to Walnut Point Road, where the trail ended after 50 yards, Beauchamp said. This is where officials believe she may have gotten into a vehicle.

Beauchamp said the entire detective division of the sheriff’s office is investigating Smith’s disappearance with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He asked for the public’s help in locating Smith.

“Please provide any information you may have, no matter how important or insignificant you think it is,” he said. “If you walked past the store on the night of the 12th between 9:18 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. the next morning and noticed anything, please call the sheriff’s office with information.”

Those with information can call 804-580-5221 or message the sheriff’s office on Facebook.

He said Smith was last seen wearing a black Nike hoodie, blue jeans and brown UGG boots. She also has “several tattoos,” including a rose on her right thigh, and wore a “black wig with a red clip on (her) back,” the sheriff’s office posted on Facebook. She has hazel eyes, is 5 feet 8 inches tall, and weighs 170 pounds.

Lydia Smith, Ahrea’l Smith’s sister, also asked for the public’s help during the press conference.

“If it was your family, what would you want someone to do?” Share it on Facebook. Every post you see, keep pushing it forward, all social media,” Smith said. “Someone knows something. Please help us. It’s starting to get cold, announcing bad weather this weekend. May my sister come back safe and sound.

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Bailey Aldridge is a reporter covering real-time news in North and South Carolina. She graduated in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.