DAVENPORT — Aishia Lankford, the mother of missing 10-year-old Breasia Terrell, visited Henry Earl Dinkins on Tuesday while he sat in a Scott County Jail cell.
The meeting was the latest development in the search for Breasia, who has not been seen for five days.
A few hours later Tuesday, Davenport police named Dinkins a “person of interest” in the young girl’s disappearance, and asked the public to call them if they had any information.
Davenport police investigators think Breasia’s last known whereabouts were in the 2700 block of East 53rd Street late last Thursday or early last Friday in the company of Dinkins. It is believed he was staying at an address on that block. Dinkins, 47, was charged Friday with a felony sex offender registration violation.
Lankford confirmed Dinkins asked for the meeting earlier this week. Dinkins is the father of her youngest son, and she had a relationship with him “about eight years ago,” she said.
Lankford said she turned down Dinkins’ first request to speak. Then she reconsidered.
“I figured it might help the police. I believe he knows something about what is happening with my daughter,” Lankford said. “I think my daughter is alive. And I think it’s just a matter of time before Dinkins is ready to crack and tell what he knows.
“That’s what I honestly believe.”
Lankford said Dinkins claimed his innocence and asked her, “Why did you drag me into this?”
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“There is not much more I want to say about what I saw and heard while I was there,” Lankford said. “I just hope he will speak with the police and somehow we can find my daughter.”
According to the Davenport police, officers executed a search warrant Friday at an apartment at 2744 E. 53rd St. in connection with a missing person investigation.
The missing person was not named. The sex offender registry listed Dinkins’ address as 743 Schmidt Rd. in Davenport, but detectives found his ID, clothing and other personal property in the apartment, according to a court affidavit.
Dinkins was convicted of third-degree sexual abuse in 1990 and police said he failed to register the location of his residence with the Scott County Sheriff’s Office within five days as required.