Henrico Police: Indiana woman is not Brittany Renee Williams, Virginia girl missing for 22 years
HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) - New information has come to light in the disappearance of Brittany Williams, a 7-year-old child who vanished from her group foster home in Henrico County in 2000.
After an extensive investigation involving the assistance of the Richmond FBI and the office of the Henrico County Commonwealth’s Attorney, Henrico Police confirmed Friday that Kaylynn Stevenson is not the missing child. Stevenson, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, came forward last June claiming to be Williams, contacting Henrico Police herself.
“DNA testing conducted by the FBI laboratory in Quantico, Virginia, conclusively states we had not located Brittany,” Henrico Police Lt. Matthew Pecka wrote to NBC12 in an email.
Where is Brittany Williams?
Brittany Williams, who contracted AIDS during pregnancy, went missing from a group foster home run by Kim Parker in the 1990s. Parker, who had legal custody of Brittany after her mother died from the disease, told authorities she sent the child went to live with another couple in California.
Henrico detectives have long maintained that Parker was not being truthful and that she has never revealed what happened to Brittany. A nationwide search ensued, but the girl was never found.
Parker ultimately spent 10 years in prison, under a plea deal for taking thousands of dollars worth of Brittany’s government checks, using them for her own benefit.
Police investigation into Kaylynn’s claims and DNA test
More than two decades later, Stevenson said she began researching to find her own biological family over the summer. Stevenson said she’d lived much of her childhood with an adopted family in Ohio.
She says she stopped cold on a missing child poster featuring Brittany Williams. Their faces bear a striking resemblance. Stevenson even had some of the same medical scars listed in Brittany’s description.
Stevenson said she had vague memories of her early childhood, but said she did recall living in Kim Parker’s home and some of the other children with special needs.
“I don’t remember a lot,” she told NBC12.
After Stevenson contacted Henrico police, an investigation ensued.
NBC12 tracked down Brittany Williams’ only known half-sister, who still lives in Richmond. Kaylynn and the woman then took their own, in-lab DNA test through Labcorp, admissible in court. The results showed a 95.83 percent probability of being maternal half-siblings.
After NBC12′s report on the investigation into whether Stevenson was indeed Brittany Williams, including the DNA test which she said backed up her claim, the story captured national attention. Stevenson went on to appear on Dr. Phil, earlier this week.
“How did you know so quickly and so surely (that you were Brittany)?” asked Dr. Phil.
“I just looked at... all the features, was like, there is my mole. That’s my hairline. Those are my eyes. That’s my smile. That’s me,” replied Stevenson, during the show.
But, after seven months, Henrico police released the results of their own investigation, Friday. Henrico Police said they’re able to confirm that Stevenson is not the lost child.
“Law enforcement came to these findings after a robust review of medical records, adoption records, consultation with infectious disease physicians, dozens of interviews and DNA analysis,” said Henrico Police Lt. Matt Pecka in a statement.
NBC12 asked Stevenson if she was untruthful in any way. Stevenson said she did everything out of genuine and honest intentions, and only proceeded because of the results she received from the DNA test.
NBC12 also reached out to Labcorp and My DNA Paternity Testing Labs, which contracted with Labcorp to help facilitate the test.
Madison Hanlon, a spokesperson for Labcorp, wrote in a statement:
“…we cannot comment on individual tests and any questions related to this matter should be directed to the authorities who investigated it.”
NBC12 also asked Henrico Police about their DNA lab findings and if they could give any insight into what happened with the test taken at Labcorp.
“Henrico Police cannot comment on an independent lab report outside of the investigation,” wrote Lt. Pecka.
Search for Brittany continues
This means Brittany Williams, and her radiant smile, remain lost. NBC12 traveled to Kim Parker’s current home in South Carolina to see if she would talk. After asking Parker what happened to Brittany Williams, she walked back into her home without response.
Henrico Police say the investigation into the disappearance of Brittany Williams is still ongoing. They ask anyone with a tip or information to call Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000.
Brittany’s family and childhood friends hope they can still one day find justice for her.
Copyright 2022 WWBT. All rights reserved.
Want NBC12’s top stories in your inbox each morning? Subscribe here.