The boyfriend of a woman whose toddler was reported missing and made a TV appeal for his return has been booked for his murder. He was arrested on Tuesday in connection with the disappearance of 2-year-old arrested on a murder charge.
“This case started out as a missing persons investigation, and unfortunately, I’m here to tell you today that it is now a homicide,” said Richard Meyers from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.
“During the course of the investigation, it became clear that the circumstances were suspicious,” he added. “As the investigation progressed, it became very clear to us that Terrell Rhodes was our primary suspect.”
Two-year-old Amari Nicholson was reported missing from the Emerald Suites, in Las Vegas, on May 5.
Meyers said during his arrest, Rhodes “chose to fight with police officers, and during the course of that fight, was briefly able to retrieve an officer’s firearm.”
The incident was deescalated, Meyers said, and Rhodes was taken to the Clark County Detention Center on a murder charge. He’s expected in court on Wednesday morning.
Meyers said there will be additional charges.
Police didn’t confirm the relationship between Rhodes and the boy’s mother Tayler Nicholson and didn’t say if Amari Nicholson’s body had been found.
Tayler appears to have deleted her Facebook page on Tuesday night after making a post about Amari claiming, “I never knew anything.”
“My baby is gone & is never coming home,” she wrote. “I never knew He [sic] did this he never said anything to me about his involvement. I trusted him and he betrayed me. He took my whole world from me … my son come before anybody!! I never knew anything.”
Last week police appealed for help in locating Amari, saying on Twitter that he could be in “severe emotional distress and in need of medical assistance.”
Family members including Rhodes himself, appealed for information to help find the boy they said was missing.
During the 28-minute KVVU Channel 5 interview published on YouTube, Rhodes crossed his arms, rubbed his face and stammered while he and Tayler appealed for information.
An aunt from Amari’s father’s side even offered a $30,000 reward for his safe return or information leading to his safe return.
Meyers urged anyone with information on the case, which remains open and active, to contact CrimeStoppers.