The last time Ember Skye Graham was seen, as far as anyone knows, the 6-month old girl was sleeping in her crib late Wednesday night.
Five days later, the baby’s father is under arrest in Shasta County, and search crews are going through rugged terrain in sweltering heat, looking for clues.
On Monday, Ember’s grandmother plead for the public’s help in finding the baby. She said that as the days go by, her sense of desperation only deepens.
“I’ve spent the last four days looking through dirt for my granddaughter,” Deborah Tomlin said, fighting back tears. “If somebody has her at this point, we don’t care who did it; we don’t care how they did it. We just want her home.”
Investigators have gotten numerous tips. But so far they have found no solid hints about where the baby might be.
Shasta County Sheriff’s Department investigators have since named the girl’s father, Matthew Ryan Graham, as a person of interest, but have not officially charged him in her disappearance. His statements about her disappearance have been inconsistent, according to the sheriff’s office.
“Nothing makes sense,” Tomlin said. “Everything has been conflicting. His stories haven’t added up to anything.”
Aided by police dogs, family members, volunteers and search teams from numerous law enforcement agencies have continued looking for baby Ember in the unincorporated community of Happy Valley, which is 11 miles southwest of Redding. Meanwhile, the sheriff’s office is hoping a $10,000 reward will help pinpoint the child’s whereabouts.
The baby suffers from a seizure disorder and needs medication for her condition, sheriff’s officials said.
“Every day is running into each other,” Tomlin said. “It’s just been too long. She needs her medication.”
Graham told sheriff’s detectives he last saw Ember about 10:30 p.m. Wednesday sleeping in their home on Noosha Lane. When he woke up about 5 a.m., she was missing from her crib.
About 5:26 a.m., the sheriff’s office received a call from Graham, 24, to report his daughter’s disappearance.
But the rest is a mystery, sheriff’s Lt. Dave Kent said.
Graham and his wife are separated, and Wednesday night was one of his scheduled visitation days, Kent said.
Graham has not been forthcoming with details about his whereabouts the night his daughter disappeared. Sheriff’s officials say he hasn’t made any effort to clear his name.
“He is not telling us exactly where he was,” said Kent, adding that the dearth of details have made it impossible to issue an Amber Alert.
Instead, the sheriff’s office has called on a child abduction response team to help them find Ember.
“It’s our job not to get emotional and to make sure we use every response possible to track down these leads,” Kent said.
Graham was arrested about 8:30 p.m. Thursday on suspicion of a probation violation in connection with failing to disclose medication he took, sheriff’s officials said. Graham is on probation for driving under the influence and forgery. He is being held without bail.
Ember’s mother, Jamie Graham, told the Record Searchlight her husband did nothing wrong. She just wants her baby found, she said.
Detectives have released photographs of Graham’s blue 1990 Chevrolet pickup truck and are asking anyone who saw the truck in the area of Clear Creek Road on Wednesday to call authorities.
Anyone with details about Ember’s whereabouts is urged to call the sheriff’s Major Crimes Unit at (530) 245-6135 or sheriff’s records bureau at (530) 245-6025.
For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA.