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National
Florida woman charged with murder in 32-year-old disappearance of 3-year-old son
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Florida woman charged with murder in 32-year-old disappearance of 3-year-old son

Mother Charged with Murder in 32-Year-Old Disappearance of her 3-Year-Old Son

Florida woman charged with murder in 32-year-old disappearance of 3-year-old son

A Florida woman has been arrested in the decades-old disappearance of her 3-year-old son, who is believed to have been murdered, police said. 

Amy Elizabeth Fleming, 60, of Dania Beach, was arrested Jan. 29 in Boca Raton on an out-of-state fugitive warrant from North Las Vegas, according to Palm Beach County court records. She is charged with felony murder.

KSNV in Las Vegas reported that Fleming is charged with the 1986 homicide of her 3-year-old son, Francillon Pierre, who was known by the nickname “Yo-yo.” Fleming waived extradition Feb. 1 and, as of Monday, was in the process of being extradited to Clark County, Nevada.

The Associated Press reported Monday that the boy’s body has not been found, but investigators have obtained new statements from witnesses who allege that Fleming killed her son. North Las Vegas police officials have declined to say how they believe Francillon died. 

“The parents have always been persons of interests in the case,” North Las Vegas police Officer Eric Leavitt said Monday, according to the AP. “At this point, evidence points to (Fleming), but the investigation is ongoing.”

Police officials told KSNV Saturday that cold case detectives have been working on Francillon’s disappearance over the past several months and “pieced several things together.” 

>> Read more trending news

According to the Charley Project, an organization that profiles about 10,000 missing persons cases in the U.S., Fleming, who in 1986 went by the name Amy Luster, told police her son vanished Aug. 2, 1986, from the Broad Acres Swap Meet in North Las Vegas. At the time of his disappearance, Francillon lived with a then-28-year-old Amy Luster and her fiancé, Lee Luster. 

Lee Luster, the other person of interest in the case, has not been charged in connection with the boy’s death, the AP reported

Francillon’s biological father, Jean Pierre, was Amy Luster’s former boyfriend, the Charley Project said.

When the toddler vanished, Amy and Lee Luster were awaiting trial on felony child abuse charges stemming from a December 1985 case in which Francillon was found to have 30 to 40 welts on his 32-pound body, the Charley Project reported.

The Associated Press reported the couple eventually pleaded guilty to the abuse charges and each served five years of probation. 

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Francillon Pierre is pictured as he might look at age 29 in an age-progression photo created in 2012. Pierre was 3 years old when he was reported missing Aug. 2, 1986, from the Broad Acres Swap Meet in North Las Vegas. Pierre was never found, but his mother, Amy Elizabeth Fleming, right, was arrested Jan. 29, 2019, in Boca Raton, Florida, and charged with felony murder in the toddler's disappearance and presumed death.
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Florida woman arrested in 32-year-old disappearance, killing of 3-year-old son

Photo Credit: National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Francillon Pierre is pictured as he might look at age 29 in an age-progression photo created in 2012. Pierre was 3 years old when he was reported missing Aug. 2, 1986, from the Broad Acres Swap Meet in North Las Vegas. Pierre was never found, but his mother, Amy Elizabeth Fleming, right, was arrested Jan. 29, 2019, in Boca Raton, Florida, and charged with felony murder in the toddler's disappearance and presumed death.

“Amy and Lee told the police they’d taken the boy to the swap meet and lost track of him there,” the Charley Project page for Francillon read. “They asked authorities not to publicize his disappearance or distribute photographs because they didn’t want the media to sensationalize it.”

About a month later, the couple tried to sell some of the boy’s toys in a garage sale to help pay for a trip they planned to Seattle, the website said. The garage sale was canceled after local media reported about it. 

George Knapp, a reporter with 8 News Now in Las Vegas, recalled the story of the missing boy with the beautiful smile. 

“It grabbed the public and it didn’t let go for months,” Knapp said in an 8 News Now story posted online Monday. “Francillon’s face was everywhere, that one photo, that face, the innocence of that smiling, 3-year-old face.”

The Charley Project reported Amy and Lee Luster blamed Francillon’s disappearance on his biological father, who lived in Haiti when his son vanished. 

“Investigators located him in Haiti about two and a half months later and searched his apartment but found no trace of Francillon,” the website said. “Jean then traveled to Nevada, took a lie detector test and passed. He was ruled out as a suspect.”

The Lusters were considered suspects in Francillon’s disappearance but were never charged, the Charley Project said on the boy’s page, which was last updated in 2012. The couple married and moved to Boca Raton about 11 months after the boy went missing, claiming they did so to be closer to Haiti.

They said they still believed Pierre had abducted his son.

Knapp said police -- and the public -- were skeptical of the Lusters’ story from the start. 

“The suspicion was that they had taken their anger out on him one last time and it went too far,” Knapp said

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Earlier Sunday, Stephanie Young McCluney, the wife of one of the missing men, thanked the efforts of the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department in a Facebook post. According to a tweet from the agency, 50 firefighters were assisting the Coast Guard with the search. The Jacksonville Association of Fire Fighters has also set up a link for those wanting to help with search efforts.  'The donations will support the search efforts and ultimately the families of the firefighters,' according to the Jacksonville Firefighter Charities donation page. 'Thank you so much for your support and prayers!' Original report: In a Facebook post Saturday, McCluney's wife said the Coast Guard has suspended the air search until Sunday morning but will continue to search by boat and radar overnight. According to Stephanie McCluney's post, the search area will move north as the Coast Guard continues to survey the coast off Volusia County throughout the night. 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  • If you have a horse you're willing to donate, Pennsylvania State Police want to talk to you. The horse must stand between 16 and 18 hands tall and be a draft or draft-cross breed. Pennsylvania State Police are asking for donations of horses to support mounted patrol units, which utilize animals deployed for security, patrol, searches and crowd control. >> Read more trending news  Once your horse retires, you are able to get your horse back. To arrange a donation, or for more information, contact Corporal Carrie Neidgigh at 717-533-3463.
  • A Nebraska teenager paid tribute to her late father through her high school senior pictures. >> Read more trending news  Julia Yllescas, a senior at Aurora High School, wanted her father to be a part of her senior pictures. Her father, Capt. Robert Yllescas, died Dec. 1, 2008, in Bethesda, Maryland, from injuries he received from an improvised explosive device while serving in Afghanistan. Yllescas had her senior pictures taken Saturday and sent them to photographer Susanne Beckmann to see if she could create an 'angel picture,' KOLN reported. Julie Yllescas loved the first two photographs that Beckmann worked on, They show her sitting and standing next to a faint shadow of her father in uniform, the radio station reported. 'Why it has hit my heart so hard is that I almost felt when I saw those pictures that he truly was there,” Yllescas told KOLN. 'And to have a piece of him with me throughout my senior year. Because sometimes it feels like where are you, why did you have to go.' Beckmann, whose husband has served in the Nebraska National Guard for 16 years, was only too happy to create the images. 'I was teary-eyed when I was editing them,' Beckmann told KOLN. 'All I could think in my head is I don't ever want to have to do this for my own kids.' Beckmann, who has run Snapshots by Suz for eight years, said she has known the Yllescas family since Julia was 9.  'I thought it would be a great idea to do these angel pictures for her as a special gift for her big milestone and to her family,' Beckmann told Cox Media Group by telephone Tuesday morning. 'I am an active duty National Guard wife, which is what inspired the idea and the vision. 'I take a lot of pictures of military families and it is always an honor for me to capture their special memories.' The photographs that include her father are a comfort for Yllescas 'Just to have that on my wall and be like, 'No, he is with me,' even though I can't physically see him,” she told KOLN.