BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A desperate search is underway for a missing girl. Her mom believes foul play may be involved, but police say there’s no evidence of that.

Mike Hellgren spoke with her heartbroken mother.

The door was unlocked and the music was blaring. But there was no sign of Phylicia Barnes inside her family’s apartment.

“My baby is not a runaway,” said Janice Sallis, missing girl’s mom.

Sallis is desperate for answers, as she held up pictures of her 16-year-old daughter Phylicia Barnes, who has been missing since Tuesday.

“I am an emotional wreck,” Sallis said. “I don’t even know what my gut is feeling because my emotions are all over the place.” 

Barnes lives in North Carolina. She was visiting family for the holidays, staying at an apartment complex behind Reisterstown Road Plaza when she disappeared.

“If she’s alive, she’s scared to death,” Sallis said. “Anyone who gets joy out of that must be a sick, perverted individual.”

Barnes is not familiar with Baltimore.

She took her wallet and a cell phone, but left money and credit cards.

“It appears she left on her own. It doesn’t appear that there was any foul play at this point,” said Major Clifton McWhite, Baltimore City Police Department. “This is a good kid, a good young girl–a straight-A student from North Carolina.” 

“We’ve had some tips,” McWhite said. “However, they haven’t panned out as we expected.” 

Tips include a false report that she was at a shelter in downtown Baltimore.

“It’s like she has vanished in thin air, and no one knows where she’s at,” Sallis said. “Somebody knows where she’s at, and I’m telling you right now, God’s gonna get you.” 

Barnes was last seen wearing a hooded blue peacoat, a tan purse and turquoise thermal shirt.  If you know anything, call police right away.

Barnes was such a good student that she was set to graduate high school early. She was looking into attending Towson University.

Comments (40)
  1. pigeon says:

    I continue to pray for this “child” and her family.

    1. wesley says:

      i am in oj. -gangstas dont do that i smell a rat tell her boyfreind to put the candy down and let the little girl go

  2. Mary says:

    I want to know when and where will a search party be organize for this young lady. I am sure there are many people willing and ready to join me. Will the Police Dept. please give the public the okay and the resources so we can get volunteers to look for her. I am ready.

    1. kelly says:

      thanks Mary we are putting together a massive search party as we speak. if i can get back to this sight i will let u know when

  3. mona says:

    What happened to tracing her cell phone calls? I feel like the police are failing this little girl and her family. Wha was the last person she called? Can the track her location with her phone? This is ridiculous that they just assume she ran away and won’t treat this case seriously.

    1. Molly says:

      i got to the same school as phylicia, we are all praying. police have tried calling her phone, and many other people.. it’s dead. keep her in your prayers.

      1. Molly says:

        i had meant the police and many other people tried calling.

    2. kelly says:

      unfortunately that was the case at first but they have assured us EVERYONE is on the case NOW! as you can see it has hit just about every news channel and newspaper

  4. Geri says:

    Someone, somewhere has seen this young lady. What made her leave the apartment since she is not that familiar with Baltimore? If she has her cell phone with her, why didn’t she respond to her sister who was trying to contact her? Why did she take her pocketbook but left her money and credit cards? Her sister’s boyfriend stated that he last saw her around 1:pm on Tuesday, where did she indicate to him that she was going when she left the apartment? What did her father mean when he stated that “her friends returned home, the door was opened, and the music was loud?” I could go on with this one; there are a lot of unanswered questions, and the police need to get on their job and dig into everyone who say that they are baffled by this unexpected turn of events. We, who say that we are praying people, need to lift this family up in our prayers for her save return.

  5. Tina says:

    i am constantly keeping this family in ny prayers i hope yew find her alive hopefully

  6. Tina mary says:

    I am so sorry to hear this i will keep you in my prayers and i hope your daughter come home safe GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY

  7. james says:

    investigate the officer that responded to the shelter do not put this incident under the rug baltimore city police department is not right,remember the reports concerning the women that report the rapes look how they handled prayers goes out to this young girls family .i repeat no one is to be trusted with your child exspecialy away from home i hope she gets home safely. james

  8. Mary says:

    To Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake…I don’t understand why on earth there is not a search party underway for this missing teen from North Carolina. If it was your child, there would be a massive search. Mayor, please, do the right thing and get the ball rolling. You are making an embarrassment out of this city.

    1. dana says:

      You are so right. This is very embarrassing for our City.

  9. Bonnie Briscoe says:

    The family is out searching the city with flyers. If you want to help come to 6520 eberle drive now, we could use lots of help from the public

  10. Rachell says:

    @I hope my hunch is wrong… They should be looking at the sisters boyfriend. He was home alone with this girl. It is unlikely to be a random stranger abduction in the dead of winter. I think police are going in that direction since there has been no Amber Alert and no organized search. They are probably watching him to see if he goes back to where he put her. This is a beautiful girl and I’m praying feverishly that she is alive and that my hunch is wrong.

  11. Mary says:

    Bonnie…I appreciate you informing the viewers the family’s search effort for their loved one, but we need a search on a bigger scale. I am saddened that this city can’t do more and yet when Natalie Halloway went missing, it was a massive and organized search. Baltimore is pathetic and I am sure the people of North Carolina would not want to travel here in the future.

    1. Rachel says:

      Mary… I believe Bonnie is Phylicia’s aunt. Maybe I’m naive but I really think the police have focused their efforts on one suspect and are not sharing info.

  12. concern parent of teen says:

    My prayers are with the family Police made a community blast phone call giving her description before the story broke on the tv news

  13. Trina StrongFeather Caldwell says:

    I sure hope that she is found safe and return home to her family. I am a mother of two teenagers here in NC with ties to Baltimore also. I don’t understand why an Amber Alert hasn’t been sounded for her. Yes, many go missing, but I feel as though all Missing Persons should get the same amount of coverage and search as the ones with the “means” to have search parties and set up rewards.

  14. Amber Mather says:

    i for one am appalled at this citys lack of effort to find this girl. i am also wondering why an amber alert was not put out for this a mother of four kids two of which are teenagers i find this to b appalling. i do live here in baltimore but at this moment am very ashamed to admit it. i will b sharing and following this story because if it was my child i would want as much help as i could get as well since the police are just sitting on there hands. my family, friends, and i will b watching out for this girl and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and this poor girl. i pray that u find her and soon. and i pray that this city and the people responsible for our safety get there heads out of there rears and do something to help this family before it is too late and she becomes another statistic. come on baltimore its time to step up.

    1. kelly barnes says:

      There r certain criteria they need in order to issue a amber alert.

      1. Jeffrey says:

        Your are correct Kelly and the first and most important criteria is the fact and/or suspicion that the child has been abducted. That is what triggers an Amber Alert.

    2. Jeffrey says:

      An AMBER Alert or a Child Abduction Emergency (SAME code: CAE) is a child abduction alert bulletin in several countries throughout the world, issued upon the suspected abduction of a child, since 1996. AMBER is officially a backronym for “America’s Missing: Broadcasting Emergency Response” but was originally named for Amber Hagerman, a 9-year-old child who was abducted and murdered in Arlington, Texas in 1996. Alternate alert names are used in Georgia (U.S. state), where it is called “Levi’s Call”[1] (named after Levi Frady); Hawaii, where it is called a “Maile Amber Alert”[2] (named after Maile Gilbert); and Arkansas, where it is called a “Morgan Nick Amber Alert”[3] (in memory of Morgan Chauntel Nick). Frady, Gilbert and Nick were all children who went missing in those U.S. states.

  15. kelly barnes says:

    Yes bonnie is our aunt and yes the police r doing all they can and of course r leaving us out of “the loop” becuz its an ongoing investigation. Please continue to pray for our familys strength as the devil is trying to divide us against one another

  16. Christy says:

    This article has not been updated in over 24 hours….

  17. Mary says:

    Bonnie and Kelly, I am praying for you and your family. I think the police should be doing more and they should not keep you out of the loop. The family should go to City Hall and demand to see the Mayor and find out why the police is not organizing a massive search party for your loved one. You deserves answers. Good luck and God Bless. I am glad that people on the message board agree that a search party is needed.

  18. Tonja Glover (Bigma) says:

    To Russell and the Barnes family, every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. (Proverbs 30:5) Please keep God in your heart and the devil out remember to always pray.

  19. hvillage says:

    I know I may be pointing out the obvious, but does anyone know if there is a possible internet acquaintance she may have been out to meet? It seems odd that she’d take her purse but not her money. That says to me that all she felt she needed when she went out was a means of communication. So…who was she communicating with? Facebook, craigslist, myspace, other social networking sites?

  20. tonya says:

    where is Deena Barnes no one heard from her

  21. Kia says:

    I think Deena Barnes know more than she is saying.

  22. Mary says:

    Thanks Kelly, I saw your response and I will gather some friends to help in the search for your sister once the police and experts calls for a search. It needs to involve the community and that means a large number of volunteers. I will be waiting for information thru the media. God Bess.

  23. TRJ says:

    Where is Deena Barnes and her boyfriend? Are they under investigation?
    My prayes are with the family.

  24. fran says:

    why would u allow ur daughter to visit her sisters at a party house, she should had stay at her father house, what is up with the parents, her mother has not been in baltimore or her present has not been seeen, her parents are very strange.There is no supervision here. Her father should had check on her activities while she was here.Weak parents.

  25. THB says:

    I am the mother of three. One away at college in another state and two over the age of 21. My prayers go out to the family but especially to the parents. I know that I would be out of my mind with worry if it were my child and I didn’t know where he or she was or what was going on. As a community we need to pray for the family but also let them know that we (as a community) feel their pain and have their backs. I you post, a kind word to keep them going would be nice. It’s not hard to do, just put yourself in their place after all it could happen to anyone. God Bless the Barnes Family and my family will continue to pray for you all and the people around you.

  26. Haoua says:

    The police should focus alot more on the sisters and the ex-boyfriend they definitely know what had happened to Phylicia.

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