"I appreciate the outpouring of love and concern for my family in our time of need," Walt Harris wrote on Instagram

By Benjamin VanHoose
October 29, 2019 03:05 PM
Walt Harris/Instagram

The family of missing teen Aniah Haley Blanchard is speaking out as the search for her continues in Alabama.

Blanchard — the stepdaughter of UFC heavyweight Walt Harris  — was reported missing by her family last Thursday, according to police in Auburn. The Southern Union State Community College student, 19, last made contact with a friend on Wednesday before her damaged car — a black 2017 Honda CR-V — was discovered, empty, at an apartment complex in Montgomery on Friday.

Speaking with ABC News on Monday, Blanchard’s father Elijah Blanchard described his daughter as ambitious, organized and “fun to be around.”

“She always calls me at the end of the day to see how my day was,” he told the outlet. “She would never not contact somebody and let them know what she’s doing.”

On Monday, police released a surveillance video from last Wednesday night, Oct. 23, in which Blanchard can be seen making a purchase at a convenience store in downtown Auburn. According to police, her car was then observed traveling Southbound on South College Street.

Blanchard’s stepfather Harris has continued to post on Instagram asking for information about his stepdaughter.

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After a show of support from his 29,000 Instagram followers, Walt shared a statement on Monday, accompanied with the hashtag #FindAniah.

“I appreciate the outpouring of love and concern for my family in our time of need. … I also would appreciate those making false or insensitive accusations to please have a heart. Thank you,” he wrote, in part.

In an initial statement from Auburn Police at the time she was reported missing, Aniah is described as a “light-complexioned black female, 5’–6”, 125 lbs., brown eyes and brown hair and was last seen wearing a black dress, tan duck boots with black stockings.”

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Aniah Haley Blanchard’s vehicle
Auburn Police Division
Walt Harris
Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty

The report also stated, at the time, that there is no evidence of foul play.

Police say the ongoing investigation is receiving assistance from the FBI, U.S. Marshal Service, the Department of Homeland Security and other local agencies.

Anyone with information regarding Blanchard’s whereabouts is being asked to call the Auburn Police Division Detective Section at (334)-501-3140, the anonymous tip line at (334)-246-1391 or the 24-hour nonemergency number at (334)-501-3100.