Breasia Terrell (True Crime) *Solved

Date:
July 10, 2020 (Friday)

Location:
5700 E. 53rd St. Davenport, IA, USA

Situation:
Missing

Breasia Terrell

Nickname: Unknown
Alternative Name: Unknown

Disappearance

Missing from: 5700 Block of E. 53rd St., Davenport, Iowa, USA
Date Missing: July 10, 2020 (Friday)
Taken By: Unknown ➔ Person of Interest is Henry Dinkins, a registered sex offender who was in the area when Breasia disappeared. Police are asking anyone who saw those cars in the area or who saw Dinkins on that day to report it.

Circumstances: Breasia Terrell last spoke with her mother on Thursday night when she texted her mother good night at around 9:00pm (21:00). She was spending the night with her half-brother who was visiting his father Henry Earl Dinkins and Henry’s girlfriend at their apartment on the 2700 block of E. 53rd Street in Davenport, Iowa.

Breasia Terrell

She vanished the following day, last seen early in the morning on Thursday walking near the Dinkins apartment. Dinkins has been listed as a person of interest and has been in jail since July for violating sex offender registration laws (in 1999 he was charged with assaulting a girl under 13y/o) and breaking his parole. Dinkins has denied having any information that could help.

Henry Earl Dinkins (Person of Interest)

Police have not declared him an official suspect at this time, and instead are asking anyone who saw his vehicles or Breasia to contact them with information.

Dinkins’ cars include:

  • 2007 Maroon Chevy Impala
  • 2012 Black Chevy Camaro
  • 1980′s Kings Highway motor home

Police and private search parties have been combing the area, including Credit Island park. Unfortunately, as we have seen in all-too-many cases, an amber alert wasn’t released until several days (5) after she disappeared (Link) – the alert was likely issues once they had a vehicle (Dinkins’) to attach per the requirements.

A private march was held to bring public attention to Terrell’s disappearance on Saturday, November 14.

Private March in honor of Breasia Terrell
Photo from the Des Moines Register

UPDATE:

The amber alert (launched July 15, 2020) was cancelled six months later in January 2021, but the search remains ongoing.

“I miss her. I miss her smell. I miss her smile. I miss everything about her. . . . I love that she’s a truth-teller — I could use a truth-teller right about now.”

Aisha Lankford (mother) ~ Des Moines Register

SOLVED (Mar. 31):

On March 22, remains of a young girl were recovered and shortly afterwards confirmed to be Breasia. Henry Dinkins was charged with first degree murder and first degree kidnapping following this discovery (Link).


Key to the investigation were sightings of a red Chevy Impala like that of Dinkins’ on the morning of Breasia’s Disappearance.

Sighting 1

According to police, Dinkins claimed he visited his motorhome in the 700th block of Schmidt Road that morning. This was seemingly verified when a red Chevy Impala was recorded driving along that road between 2:13am and 2:50am. It appears Dinkins’ son was also there as he told police he watched his father cleaning a machete with bleach while at the motorhome. Police later located the machete above the refrigerator of the home.

Sighting 2

Dinkins’ son also testified that they visited Credit Island later in the morning. This was supported by a recording of a red impala crossing onto the island. Although police searched the island, it appears nothing was found at that time.

*It is not clear when this trip occurred.

Sighting 3

Dinkins girlfriend stated that she awoke at 3:00am and found Breasia and Dinkins missing. Attempts to call Dinkins failed as he had left his phone behind at home (an investigation revealed that Dinkins phone had been either dead or turned off periodically throughout the night. . She mentions noticing Breasia and Dinkins gone, but not the son. It isn’t clear if this was a common occurrence or how concerning it was that all three of them were gone at that time of day.

Meanwhile at approximately 3:31a.m., Dinkins was recorded on surveillance cameras getting out of a red Impala at a local gas station – the Kwik Stop (201 W. 53rd St.).

Sighting 4

The same Impala was later recorded on the road leading to Clinton County and at the edge of the town of Clinton.

Sighting 5

Dinkins and his son stopped at the Clinton Walmart sometime after 7:00a.m., a drive of approximately 40 minutes from the Kwik Stop. It is not clear what he did the other 3 hours between the two sightings.

Detectives later claimed that the Impala’s trunk smelled like bleach and contained an axe alongside cleaning materials. The axe might have contained traces of blood (animal or human is not specified).


At some point, Dinkins supposedly returned to the home where his girlfriend was waiting to get his phone. He then left once more (it isn’t clear if the son was with him at that point or not).

Police did locate two boxes for unidentified phones in Dinkins’ vehicle. His purpose for the phones is uncertain, as is the phone numbers assigned. The phones were not recovered in the vehicle. A phone (with battery and case) was located by police near the road near or in the city of Clinton. Dinkins’ son also said he found a phone and turned it on for a while (when is not clear?).


On July 16, police shifted the investigation to Clinton County following a lead from an unnamed source, but the search ended on July 20. Eight months later (on March 22), the Sherriff’s Department in Clinton reported the discovery of a body by fishermen near DeWitt, Iowa. The heartbreaking find occurred south of Kunau Implements approximately 20yds from a pond in a wooded area.

Map of key locations in the Breasia Terrell case

The location is approximately 25 miles NW from the Clinton Walmart. *It isn’t clear why Dinkins would have gone to Clinton since DeWitt is straight north from Davenport on Highway 61. Three bullets were located in the search, two near the body and one in the autopsy. There is substantial mention of the axe and machete, but it is not clear if they played a role in the death or the abandonment of the remains. Nor is it clear if police have located the gun.

On March 29, the remains were confirmed to be Breasia’s, and in May, Dinkins was charged as a suspect in her murder.


This tragic end to Breasia’s story in no way halts our celebration of her life and appreciation for the precious gift graced to the community by her too brief presence on earth. Our thoughts and prayers are extended her family. Sleep in peace sweetheart.

Key Descriptors

  • Date of Birth: August 14, 2011
  • Age at Disappearance: 10
  • Ethnicity: African American
  • Nationality: American
  • Gender at Birth: Female
  • Hair: Black, Curly
  • Eye Color: Brown
  • Height: 4′ 5″ (134cm)
  • Weight: 75lbs (34kg)

Distinguishing Marks or Factors

  • Might have been wearing glasses

Clothing

  • Large white t-shirt
  • Shorts
  • White or Pink Flip Flops

If You or Anyone You Know Has Information About The Disappearances, Please Contact:

Or use the QR Code (right) to find contact information for the National Police.

Resources

  • Cress, J. (2020) ‘Breasia Terrell: Community raising awareness for Davenport 10-year-old girl missing since July’, Des Moines Register, 14 November. Link
  • Sahouri, A. (2020) ‘Davenport 10-year-old Breasia Terrell disappeared in July and is still missing. Here’s what we know.’, Des Moines Register, 9 October. Link
  • Sahouri, A. (2020) ‘Breasia Terrell: More questions than answers in the case of missing 10-year-old Davenport girl’, Des Moines Register, 27 July. Link
  • City of Davenport (2020) ‘Missing Child’ Link
  • Scott County (2020) ‘Search for Breasia Terrell’, Link
  • Sahouri, A. (2021) ‘Amber Alert canceled for missing Breasia Terrell; with no new information, missing child’s case still ongoing’, Des Moines Register, 13 January. Link
  • Gray, T. (2021) ‘Court documents reveal new details in case of man charged in death of Breasia Terrell’, KWQC, 7 July. Link.
  • Sahouri, A. (2021) ‘Remains found in DeWitt are those of Breasia Terrell, the Davenport girl missing since July’, Des Moines Registrar, 31 March. Link.

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