20 years later, abduction case stirs emotions

By Matt Butner - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - 20 years ago today, two brothers went missing from a south Richmond neighborhood. One was found murdered days later. The other is still missing. Now, a Richmond detective is leading a renewed effort to find a killer, and bring the missing boy home.

In family photos, Jamal and Basil Abdul'Faruq seem inseparable.  In one, the brothers stand side by side, their arms around each other.

On April 16, 1990, they were playing together near their mother's home on Clarkson Road.  They never returned.  Their parents and neighbors launched a frantic search.  Three days later, Basil's body was found in a Chesterfield landfill.

Richmond homicide detective James Baynes was reminded of the case when he picked up a newspaper two years ago and saw the boys' pictures.

"I have two sons myself, so I strongly related to it," said Baynes.

He began updating the case file and reaching out to Jamal and Basil's family. He soon realized the boys' parents had not given up hope of finding Jamal.

"When you ask both of them, they're very passionate that they believe Jamal is still alive, and that transfers to me. I think he's still alive too," he said.

For Detective Baynes, the mission is now twofold: bring Jamal home, and find the person who took Basil's life and left him in a Chesterfield landfill.

"There's a monster out there," said Baynes. "He took two boys, and killed one of them, and he just threw him away in the trash."

Advances in DNA technology are allowing police to take a new look at the case.  Evidence found near basil's body is now being tested at the Virginia state lab. 
Baynes hopes new evidence, along with increased publicity, will lead to answers.

"I think people who were living in Richmond at the time, knew about this case, and might have some information that could help us," he said.

Although it's been 20 years, the fight continues to find one brother, and find justice for the other.

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