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UPDATE: Missing 3-year-old from Basile found safe

State Police
Posted at 4:18 PM, May 12, 2021

UPDATE: Louisiana State Police say that the 3-year-old boy missing from Basile has been located and is safe.

-----Original Story Below-----

The Louisiana State Police has issued a Level II Endangered/Missing Child Advisory on behalf of the Basile Police Department. A woman is wanted in connection with the child's disappearance, they say.

State Police say that the 3-year-old child was last seen on Sunday, May 9, 2021, on Second Street in Basile, LA. The child was last seen with his non-custodial mother, Ashley Nicole Bang (also known as Ashley Willis), and is believed to be in imminent danger.

Ashton Michael Willis is described as having dark brown hair and brown eyes. He is approximately 3’ tall and weighs about 40 pounds. He was wearing a T- shirt and diaper when he was last seen.

State Police say 32-year-old Ashley Nicole Bang is wanted for questioning in the child’s disappearance. Ashley Bang has brown hair and brown eyes. She is approximately 5’2” tall and weighs about 115 pounds. She is possibly driving a 1998 White Chevrolet Cavalier bearing Louisiana license plate 448EBW.

Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of either of these subjects should immediately contact the Basile Police Department at 337-432-6625 or call 911.

KATC reached out to Basile Police Chief Allen Ivory, Jr. to find out why the alert went out Wednesday, May 12, when the child was last seen Sunday, May 9.

Ivory said that Basile Police received a complaint on May 2 from the child's paternal aunt stating that the child had been moved from her temporary custody, taken away, and had not been returned. As of Wednesday, Ivory said the aunt has not seen the child nor the child's biological mother.

The chief added that his officers have received some unconfirmed information that the child's aunt has made contact with his mother saying they're okay, but none of that has been confirmed by BPD. He says his officers have been in constant contact with the child's father's family, who have told officers they haven't seen or heard from either of them. He adds that the child's aunt is "adamant about not returning the child or herself to Basile."

State Police tell us they were informed of the missing child by Basile Police on Wednesday, May 12.

The alert was "just released today because of complications and differing versions of what happened," said Ivory. He says his office wanted to make sure that the investigation was accurate, and says for that reason the department "gave it time to give us more information, more investigation, etc."

"We are hoping for the safe return of the child as well as the mother. Our mission is to ensure that," the chief added.

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