Monday, October 3, 2022

The Disappearance of Nadia Kersh

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Nadia Kersh has been missing since November 2008. The then-21-year-old lived in Homewood, Alabama at the time of her disappearance. Nadia is originally from Russia, and she spent the first few years of her life in an Russian orphanage. Despite this rough start, Nadia grew into a well-rounded young woman. She is described by her loved ones as reliable and independent. However, Nadia's loved ones also said that she could be too trusting of others. It's possible that this trusting nature led to Nadia's disappearance on November 3rd, 2008.

Nadia was last seen shortly after 1:00 PM as she left her job at the local Tria Market. She planned to go pick her one-year-old son up from daycare, but she never arrived. Nadia has never been seen or heard from again. 

Surveillance footage of Nadia leaving her workplace. (source: WVTM News)

The day after Nadia was last seen, her vehicle was found abandoned in an alley in west Birmingham - located approximately 5 miles away from Homewood. A few days later, Nadia's purse was found about 100 yards away from the car's location, under an overpass on the railroad tracks. These findings seemed significant, but they did not provide any information about the whereabouts of Nadia herself.

Police identified a man named Joacques Haywood as a person-of-interest early into the investigation. According to reports, Nadia dated Joacques at some point before her disappearance. In May 2010, nearly two years after Nadia vanished, Joacques Haywood was charged with capital murder in her case. Police were finally able to move forward with these charges after a witness testified that she saw a man in a black SUV parking in front of Nadia's apartment building and then walking inside. A short time later, the witness said she heard the sound of a crash and someone crying. 

Joacques Haywood. Source: CBSNews.com

Prosecutors subsequently announced that they believed Joacques had killed Nadia during a botched robbery. However, the charges did not stick. During the summer of 2011, a judge dropped the charges against Joacques. The judge stated that the prosecution had failed to test two pieces of evidence for DNA, and they also did not give Joacques his constitutional right to a speedy trial. The charges were dropped without prejudice, which gives the prosecution the option to recharge Joacques with murder if more evidence is discovered.

Unfortunately, it appears that no such evidence has been found. Nadia remains missing and there have been very few updates in her case since the charges against Joacques were dropped. There is a monetary reward with anyone with information that could move Nadia's case forward. If you have any information that could help the investigation, please contact the Homewood Police Department at 205-332-6262.
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