A person interested in the disappearance of Lyft driver Ella Goodie has been arrested by U.S. Marshals in Missouri on an active warrant in Rapides Parish, Louisiana.
Brandon Francisco, 36, is believed to be the last person to have contact with Goodie before his disappearance. Goodie disappeared on March 9 and was last seen before driving a client to Houston, Texas.
Francisco was arrested on a warrant from the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office, according to Scott Police Chief Chad Leger. A warrant was issued after Francisco failed to appear in court the same day Goodie was last seen.
light said The Acadiana Lawyer that a representative from the US Marshals Service called him on Friday to say that Francisco had been arrested in St. Joseph, Missouri. Francisco is currently being held in Missouri until he can be brought back to Rapides Parish.
Léger made the distinction that Francisco is a person of interest, not a suspect in Goodie’s disappearance.
“We still have no whereabouts or updates on Ella Goodie,” Leger said.
Goodie’s car was caught by traffic cameras as she drove back to Louisiana on March 10, according to The Aware Foundation, a nonprofit that shares missing persons updates. The next day, the vehicle was spotted by traffic cameras north of Dallas.
Goodie’s family reportedly asked The Village 337, an Acadiana civil rights group, to help them advocate on their case. The organization is assembling a research team that should tentatively be launched on Monday, according to The Acadiana Lawyer.
“Black women have gone missing in America at a disproportionate and alarming rate, and Ella’s disappearance must be highlighted locally and nationally to bring her home safely,” the group said in a prepared statement.
Family members said Goodie was driving someone in Houston in his 2012 Audi Q5 with Texas license plate NRN6551. She was last seen wearing a denim jacket and blue pants.
More than 260,000 girls and women went missing in the United States in 2020, according to the National Crime Information Center. More than 34% of those reported were black, even though black women and girls make up only 15% of the total US population.
Anyone with information about Goodie’s whereabouts is asked to contact the Scott Police Department at 337-233-3715, or any local law enforcement agency.
Newsweek has contacted the Scott Police Department for comment.