Monday, June 7, 2021

The Disappearance of Mia Santiago

 


Mia Santiago vanished in Brooklyn, New York City on August 20th, 2005. There is very little information about Mia's disappearance, and the details that have been shared on various sources have been conflicting. What is known is that Mia was only 16 years-old at the time of her disappearance. Mia was reportedly last seen getting into a cab with an unidentified man in the 300 Block of Rodney Street. She has never been seen or heard from again.

Before delving into more details, it is important to note the following information: various online postings/sources refer to Mia as transgender. Other sources use Mia's birth name and he/him pronouns. In this post, Mia will be referred to with she/her pronouns--however there will be some direct quotations that refer to Mia with the previous name and he/him pronouns. These quotations are provided for objective and informative purposes only. 

As previously stated, there are very few details available about the circumstances surrounding Mia's disappearance. However, there has been a lot of online speculation. In 2018, a post about Mia's disappearance was featured on The Charley Project's blog. A commenter on the post suggested that Mia might have been a victim of the Long Island Serial Killer (LISK). The comment reads, "Most people who follow true crime believe that Tyrell Santiago is the “unidentified asian” male found dead at Gilgo beach and is believed to be murdered by the LISK. The victim was found wearing women’s clothing (Tyrell was Transgender) and vitals all match up as well as the composite sketch. They have the victims DNA but for some reason Santiagos family will not give a family dna sample to see if they match up. Something to do with old fashioned family views on sex etc."


Another commenter shared a link to a Reddit post from a subreddit about the Long Island Serial Killer. The Reddit post reads, "Asian male isn't even Asian at all. In fact it's nearly certain he is Tirrel Santiago, a 16 year old trans kid from Brooklyn. He dressed as a female and went by the name Mia. He went to a special theater high school in Times Square and he disappeared one block north of Christopher St. He was last seen getting into a cab with an unknown male. Why hasn't SCPD run the DNA tests for a match? Because they can't get the family to give them a sample. The area he disappears from and the fact he was a 16 year old kid tells us he wasn't some sex worker who was dressed in female clothes posing a female and was beaten when the LISK discovered he had a penis."

(click to enlarge)

It's unclear where the detail about Mia's family refusing to give a DNA sample originated. In fact, about a year after these comments were posted, a commenter named Keisha replied and stated that she is Mia's sister. Her comment reads,  "Listen I am his sister we never had a problem giving in DNA PLEASE STOP. I need information is this is my brother." In response to the comment containing the Reddit post, Keisha commented, "Please stop with the rumors." 



These comments suggest that Keisha and other family members do not believe that Mia is this unidentified person found at Gilgo Beach--but this has not been confirmed. Still, to this day, the deceased person remains unidentified and Mia remains missing. 

If you have any information that could help the investigation, please contact the NYPD at 212-694-7781.

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