|22 year-old Chelsea Cobo, pictured in late April 2016—shortly before she disappeared on May 7th, 2016.|
At the time the above photograph was taken, Chelsea Cobo was going through some very difficult things. She and her 9 month-old son Christopher were living with her aunt, Rose Cobo, in Brooklyn, New York. Rose had actually raised Chelsea since she was an infant, but Chelsea had maintained a relationship with her biological mother as well. In March 2016, Chelsea’s biological mother died of kidney failure. According to Rose, Chelsea was very depressed after her mother’s passing, and had decided to check herself into a psychiatric ward for two weeks. While in the facility, Chelsea befriended her roommate, Sabrine, and a man named Justice, who was frequently at the facility visiting Sabrine.
After her two weeks in treatment, Chelsea started going on a lot more outings with Sabrine and Justice. Since Chelsea was previously a homebody, Rose initially thought it was a good thing that her niece had made new friends. However, after one particular outing on April 26th, 2016, Chelsea returned home disoriented and bruised. When Rose tried to talk to her, Chelsea was unable to remember who she with or what had happened. Rose took her to the hospital where a rape kit and drug tests were performed. It was determined that Chelsea had been drugged with opiates, robbed, and sexually assaulted that night. Chelsea did not have a history of drug use before this incident; it is believed that her friends she met at the treatment facility introduced her to drugs.
Shortly after that incident, Chelsea told Rose she wanted to get help, and she arranged to enter treatment at a rehab facility in Yonkers. On May 6th, 2016, Rose dropped Chelsea off at Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn. From there, a van was supposed to take Chelsea to St. John’s Riverside in Yonkers. Chelsea apparently did board the van, but did not ever check into the facility. Her texts and Facebook messages revealed that she had been in contact with her friends during the trip to Yonkers, asking them to come pick her up. The messages also revealed that Chelsea was still using and was seeking to buy drugs that night. Justice agreed to pick her up, and Chelsea headed back to Brooklyn with him shortly after arriving in Yonkers. Justice said that he dropped Chelsea off at 68th Street in Sunset Park. Chelsea was spotted for a final time during the early morning hours of May 7th, 2016, leaving the Floridita restaurant on Fifth Avenue. She was accompanied by a man named Antonio, who happens to be a close friend of Justice. This is the last known sighting of Chelsea.
Early on into the investigation, Rose hired private investigator Sean Crowley to help search for Chelsea. In July 2016, Crowley looked into a possible trafficking theory. He said that he spoke with people in Coney Island who had seen Chelsea—including a prostitute who worked in the area, who recognized Chelsea from a photograph he showed her. These sightings happened only a few months into Chelsea’s disappearance, and have never been confirmed. Still, sex trafficking has still not been completely ruled out in Chelsea’s case. Chelsea’s disappearance is still being actively investigated, if you have any information about her whereabouts/case, please contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.