Local News

More Leads Develop In Buddy Myers Case

Posted May 1, 2003

— More leads in the Buddy Myers mystery surfaced Tuesday night.

Ricky Quick -- who claims to be the father of a boy who could be Buddy Myers -- was questioned by the Chicago FBI. FBI officials confirmed he has not been arrested. They said he was at the office voluntarily and responding to questions.

Quick told WMAQ-TV Tuesday that he had raised the boy, named Eli Quick, since the child was born.

Meanwhile, it was revealed Tuesday night that a recent deadly wreck in Colorado is connected to the case. Investigators say the boy may have been a passenger in a vehicle that overturned in Colorado last May.

The accident killed driver Sharon Smith. Investigators at the time thought the boy was part of Smith's family.

A boy who was brought to Chicago by Ricky Quick could be Myers. The boy known as Eli Quick reportedly told a social worker that his mother died in a car wreck. He also said her name was Sharon Smith.

Tristen "Buddy" Myers disappeared way back in October of 2000, after walking away from his aunt's Sampson County home. Investigators have been following several leads in the case, but up until now, those leads led to nowhere.

Buddy Myers, Eli Quick. Two names that could belong to the same boy. Myers' family is waiting for the results of a DNA case to see if Quick and Myers are, indeed, the same person.

"If it is him," said Raven Myers, the boy's biological mother, " I want to give him the life that I couldn't before."

While DNA tests may take as long as six weeks, the new information from Colorado reveals another chapter in a torrid tale.

According to the Colorado Highway Patrol, there was a fatal car accident on May 3, 2002, involving a boy named Eli Quick, an older male named Ricky Quick and other passengers. The accident killed the driver, who was identified as Sharon Smith.

Colorado investigators suspected something wasn't right -- claiming that something found during the search of the vehicle made them question Ricky Quick's statement about who the boy was.

That's significant because when authorities in Chicago questioned Eli Quick, he told them his mother died in a car accident.

Colorado authorities said they are optimistic that some of the information their investigators have will bring the case full circle.

Authorities believe Buddy and Eli are the same boy.

Today, as his mother waits and hopes that science will tell her if her son's alive, she's also relying on her own will power to make things right.

"It does look like him," she said, "and it makes me wonder if I messed up along the way. I feel it's my fault in some way, but I want to start over again."

The latest chapter in the investigation started after a man brought a boy he said was his son to St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, Ill. on Feb. 3. He wanted the boy examined for aggressive behavior.

But the boy was filthy and obviously had not changed clothes in several days. When the man who identified himself as Ricky Quick tried to leave with the boy, the hospital called Evanston police.

They determined there was an arrest warrant on him on a theft charge in Chicago, and turned him over to Chicago police, said Evanston Police Cmdr. Michael Perry.

Chicago police spokesman Pat Camden said the man was taken into custody but later released - which he said wasn't unusual since the charge was not particularly serious.

Manuel said the man never showed up to get the boy and never called about him.

Social worker Sharon Moriarity started trying to track down the boy's family, Cook County Public Guardian Patrick Murphy said.

"It was a great piece of detective work," he said.

"He talked about his mommy was killed in a crash in Colorado," said Murphy.

He said Moriarity determined that the woman the boy said was his mother, Sharon Smith, was killed in May 2002.

But, he said, two things made the worker question whether Smith was the boy's mother.

"The kid wasn't listed on public aid and the rest of her kids were," said Murphy. "And her sister didn't know she had a son."

Manuel said the information about the woman in Colorado started coming in mid-March.

"Until then we had no reason to think this kid was anybody other than who he said he was," she said.

Murphy said Moriarity contacted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and found that one of two children who matched the description of the boy who insisted his name was Eli came from North Carolina.

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