Federal Bureau of Investigation joins teams using dogs looking for IL toddler

Cheryl Sanders
April 27, 2017

A 1-year-old girl reported missing from Will County was found dead in a home early Thursday, authorities said.

Authorities say Semaj was reported missing at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

1-year-old Semaj Crosby was last seen yesterday afternoon on Luana Road and Richards Street in Joliet Township.

DCFS has been working with the family since September 2016, with four unfounded investigations for neglect, and two other pending investigations for neglect opened in March 2017, agency officials said.

Authorities are going door-to-door, using bloodhounds and drones in a northern IL community in search of a missing 1 1/2-year-old girl.

Sheriff's deputies and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents discovered Semaj Crosby around midnight Wednesday at the home in Joliet, the Will County Sheriff's Office said in a statement Thursday. They say her mother last say the toddler in the front yard of their home in Joliet Township, a community about 40 miles southwest of downtown Chicago.

A pond was searched in the Sugar Creek subdivision and a Cook County helicopter service is providing air search using infrared and heat capabilities.

Emergency responders search a pond Wednesday while searching for a child in the Preston Heights area.

A reverse 911 call was sent out Tuesday night to all residents within a 5-mile radius of the scene.

"She just learned to walk, so she can't get that far", said Semaj's aunt Lakershia Crosby.

Police are using the parking lot at Oak Valley School as a base of operations, said Laraway School District 70C Superintendent Joe Salmieri. The search was suspended late Wednesday.

Bloodhounds, detectives, patrolmen, volunteers and more than 80 emergency personnel from the Will County Sheriff's Office and Will County Emergency Management searched Preston Heights through the night without success.

Oak Valley runs surveillance video of the school property that will be provided to police, he said. Adrian Smith, a neighbor who helped search for the child, said he thought something was suspicious.

Anyone with information is asked to call 911 immediately.

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