Justice For Mitrice Richardson: Remembering the Daughter Who Deserved Protection

It was in September 2009 that MyBrownBaby contributor Nick Chiles wrote “A Father’s Painful Reality: It Takes A Village To Protect Our Daughters,” a moving tribute to the father of Mitrice Richardson, a beautiful 24-year-old African American woman who disappeared seemingly into thin air after being arrested and then released into the night from the Malibu/Lost Hills Police Station. Her case drew national attention only after Mitrice’s parents, loved ones and supporters made a huge deal about her disappearance, and questioned why police kicked her out of their station house after midnight, knowing she had no money, identification or a cell phone to secure a ride from the building, in a dark, remote, rural area nestled in a canyon.

Mitrice’s partially-clothed body was found a year later in a wooded area about eight miles away from the police station.

After a series of questionable actions and statements by the police department accused of turning out Mitrice into the dark without a care or concern for her safety, the woman’s parents are suing the cops, calling for an FBI investigation into their daughter’s death and even recently exhumed her body with the hope that an independent autopsy would determine how their daughter died.

The Today Show did an update yesterday on Mitrice’s death and her parents’ pending lawsuit, and I wanted to share it with MyBrownBaby readers because Mitrice was someone’s child a brown baby who had goals and ambitions and a supportive family and a life to live. A life that was taken away because some man a police officer who gets paid our hard-earned tax dollars to protect and serve didn’t have respect or care enough to see her as a human being who needed and deserved his help.

I encourage you to watch the clip and listen to what Mitrice’s mom said about her daughter something that really strikes to the heart of her baby’s humanness. Her words, about seeing her daughter in everything that is beautiful, brought tears to my eyes. Indeed, Mitrice is her daughter. But she is ours, too. Lift this mother up in prayer tonight. Pray that she and her husband the parents of this beautiful brown baby get justice.

And finds peace.

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Denene Millner

Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.


  1. Wow…I hope they get justice! This is just awful and it sounds very shady, as if the police department was involved! I’ll definitely pass this along and please post updates or information about how we can get involved. I hope this mother is successful in suing them. Horrible…

  2. I wrote a post about this story when Mitrice first went missing because I was angered by the lack of coverage this story was receiving compared to the coverage that other missing {white} women stories were receiving. My heart aches for Mitrice’s parents as well as for the parents/families of other missing people of color. In this “post~racial” world, when it comes to news coverage, we’re still relegated to the status of second class citizens with little to no value.

  3. so heartbreaking. I hope her family gets justice and peace.

  4. Thanks for posting. Just an FYI, Mitrices’ biological parents are not married yet both are fighting for justice for their daughter.


  5. This is such a sad and heartbreaking story. I pray that the mystery solved and her family gets peace.

  6. someone who cares


    I hope now Mitrice can Rest in Peace and her family has more peace of mind. i do not feel sorry for Lee Baca he is getting what he deserves!

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