YORK, Pa. (AP) — Police said Thursday they have run out of places to search for a missing 7-month-old boy and asked the public for information about the man charged with kidnapping him.
Upper Darby Police Chief Michael Chitwood said at a news conference that searches of a landfill and park near York on Wednesday did not produce leads about the location of Hamza Ali, who is believed to be dead.
Police said they hoped someone in the York and Lancaster area will remember seeing Ummad Rushdi or his brother, Jawwad, in the days after Hamza disappeared Aug. 4.
Ummad Rushdi, the 30-year-old boyfriend of Hamza’s mother, has been charged with kidnapping the boy from a home in Upper Darby. Chitwood said Ummad Rushdi has a lawyer and has stopped talking to police.
“The mom pleaded with him at least 50 times to tell her where the baby is,” Chitwood said, but Ummad Rushdi has not disclosed the location.
Police have said Jawwad Rushdi told them Ummad Rushdi admitted shaking the boy to death and burying him.
Police suspect Rushdi may have first buried Hamza near the Susquehanna River town of Columbia, as his brother’s vehicle became stuck there on Aug. 4. They think he may have then exhumed the boy’s remains and then given him a religious burial in another location.
Searches have been conducted in Upper Darby, in York and in Columbia, where dogs led investigators to a pillowcase that Hamza’s mother, Zainab Gaal, said belonged to Rushdi. They also have searched parkland and a landfill.
Police asked for information about either Ummad or Jawwad Rushdi, as well as a cab that Jawwad Rushdi drove.
Ummad Rushdi has been jailed in Delaware County on $750,000 bail. His lawyer has not returned phone messages seeking comment.
Police have said Jawwad Rushdi has been cooperative, and he hasn’t been charged with a crime.
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