Saturday, May 10, 2008

Found safe: David L. Azicri

From email notification I received April 29:
Dear Poster Partner:
David Azicri missing from Erie, PA, has been
recovered. Please discontinue dissemination of this poster. Your participation
in this program has made a valuable contribution to this recovery.
remove and discard any posters on this case that you have placed in public
Thank you for your support.
The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Visit our web site at

More details from a news article from
'It's a wonder he's alive'
Missing Millcreek teen found in Philly, tutoring immigrants, selling

Published: May 02. 2008 6:00AM
Azicri, 16, of Erie has been missing since March 5th, 2008. (Contributed
The Millcreek Township teen who had been missing for almost two
months was found in a Philadelphia boarding house Monday, tutoring African
immigrants and selling Avon products to pay his rent.
Police and private investigators found 16-year-old David Azicri in a
southwestern Philadelphia neighborhood Monday evening. He returned to Millcreek
with his parents Wednesday, Millcreek police Lt. Dan Goodman said.
"We're thrilled to have him back," Nickie Azicri, David's mother, said
Thursday. "I think I'm still numb from it."
Nickie Azicri and David's father, Max Azicri, drove to Philadelphia to pick
up their son.
His family had said he disappeared after he was last seen waiting for the
bus near the family's house in the 4000 block of Ridgewood Drive, south of
McDowell High School, on March 5. He never showed up for school at Villa Maria
Academy that day.
David Azicri left town by himself, on his own, police and the family
"There will be no criminal charges resulting from this investigation,"
Millcreek police said in a statement.
David Azicri was found through phone records and tips from people he had
contacted after weeks of silence, Goodman said.
"Some of the information was provided by people he called on their phones,
which they willingly gave," Goodman said.
The family would not comment specifically on David's current whereabouts
Thursday. Police and the family's private detective, Daniel L. Barber, also
declined comment.
The family is working in conjunction with a local social service agency to
help David work through issues, Max Azicri said.
A rough part of Philly
David took the jobs tutoring and selling Avon products to pay his rent in
Philadelphia, his mother said.
He lived alone in the boarding house, paying $100 a week in rent, she said.
The room contained only a bed and a dresser. He shared a kitchen and a bathroom
with the other residents in the building.
On either side of David Azicri's building were houses with boarded windows,
and the neighborhood has a rough reputation. A Philadelphia private investigator
told Nickie Azicri he hesitated to go to the neighborhood at all, she
"It's a wonder he's alive, considering where he was living," she
Crime statistics for the area -- in the Philadelphia Police Department's
12th Police District -- were not immediately available.
Philadelphia Police Sgt. Brad Williams, who works in the district, said
that the area has its problems.
"As with the other districts, we do have our fair share of crime here -- as
far as drugs sales, homicides, thefts and that sort of thing," he said.
'Their support and love'
While David Azicri worked and lived in Philadelphia, the public joined in
his family's search.
Churches offered prayers for his safe return; people brought food to his
parents' home; volunteers offered to pass out fliers; and print shops offered to
produce more for free.
At least one man offered the tracking services of his bloodhound, Nickie
Azicri said.
"We want to thank the community, friends, media, Villa Maria Academy and
co-workers for their support in this very difficult period," Max Azicri
"We want to be allowed privately, as a family to reflect on this
Azicri was remembered in prayers at Mass and in the morning at Villa Maria
Academy, said the highs school's president, Geri Cicchetti. She said dome school
meetings opened with a prayer that he return to the school unharmed.
"The students have been praying for his safe return," Cicchetti said.
"Villa is very much a family, and I know the students were very glad to hear
he's been found safe."
Other friends, relatives and people they didn't know offered "support and
love," Nickie Azicri said.
"It made me feel good knowing that all of those people were praying for
him," she said. "The community was great."
CODY SWITZER can be reached at 870-1776 or by e-mail.

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