TORONTO — Police have issued an Amber Alert in the search for a 14-year-old boy who they say screamed for help before being pushed into a Jeep by two men in North York on Wednesday morning.
Toronto police Insp. Jim Gotell says Shammah Jolayemi was last seen in the area of Jane Street and Driftwood Avenue, north of Finch Avenue West, at around 8:26 a.m.
He is described as about five-foot-eleven to six feet, with a slim build and short dark brown hair. Jolayemi was last seen wearing a gray hoodie, gray track pants with an orange stripe, a shiny black puffy winter coat and yellow Air Jordans. He may have been carrying a red and black Adidas back pack.
‘Help me, help me’
Witnesses told police that “a 14 year-old boy was observed to be screaming ‘help me, help me’ and forced into a black Jeep wrangler by two males, who drove away.”
Jolayemi was pushed into the car outside of 353 Driftwood Avenue.
A vehicle of interest was observed in the area where the victim was last seen, police said. It is described as a black Jeep Wrangler with oversized front tires and a front push bar with round fog lights.
Gotell described the suspects as two black males between the ages of 18 and 22, both standing six-feet tall, with thin builds.
“To the two people who took this 14 year-old this morning, we are asking them to release the 14 year old to a place of safety where he can be returned to his family,” Gotell said.
Ontario Amber Alert in effect. ^jt pic.twitter.com/zWYOGKWnEc
— AMBER Alert Ontario (@AMBERAlertONT) March 5, 2020
Investigators are looking to speak with the boy’s stepbrother, who has been identified as Olalekan Osikoya.
Gotell said Osikoya is the only member of Jolayemi’s family that they have not yet spoke with and believe he may know why the boy was taken.
Morning absence calls never went out, TDSB says
The boy’s parents called police at about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, not knowing until shortly before then that he did not make it to school that morning.
“This is not a parental abduction,” Gotell said. “We don’t believe this was a joke or any type of prank.”
The Toronto District School Board confirmed to CTV News Toronto on Thursday afternoon that Jolayemi is a Grade 9 student at Newtonbrook Secondary School, which is located in the area of Hilda Avenue and Steeles Avenue West.
Ryan Bird, a spokesperson for the school board, said automated phone calls typically go out to parents or guardians twice daily, usually around 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. He said morning absences should have been recorded and then issued as part of the school’s morning call, but they “did not get recorded in time.”
The first attendance call did not go out until 6:09 p.m., Bird said.
He confirmed that four staff members have been place on home assignment while the school board investigates the matter further.
Police investigating burned out vehicle
On Thursday afternoon, Toronto police spokesperson Meaghan Gray said officers are aware of a burned out vehicle that was found in the area of Forks of the Credit Provincial Park in Caledon, Ont.
Gray said officers are “exploring the possibility” that this may be linked to the investigation, while adding that there is no confirmed connection at this time.
Aerial footage from the CTV News Toronto helicopter, which was captured on Thursday morning after the vehicle had been taken away, showed multiple police vehicles and officers in the area it was discovered.
Toronto police officers are working with the Ontario Provincial Police to investigate the burned vehicle.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police or Crime Stoppers.