Community members came together Monday to pray for the safe return of a 23-year-old who disappeared from Hartford last week and vowed to search the capital city for the young mother who vanished.
Tashauna Jackson, of Hartford, was last seen getting into a car the night of Tuesday, Aug. 11. Police said a man was behind the wheel and Jackson seemed to go willingly. She was reported missing the next day.
"There are some very unusual circumstances here," said Hartford Police Chief James Rovella. "The mother of a 5-year-old that has no history of disappearance or gone missing, or who always comes home. It's very suspicious to us."
Investigators have questioned the man Jackson was with but have not elaborated on their relationship. The man's car was seized as evidence.
Police said they are "extremely concerned" for Jackson's safety, although her case does not meet the criteria for a Silver or Amber Alert. No charges have been filed.
Those who know Jackson are holding out hope. Friends and family gathered at the intersection of Barbour Street and Cleveland Avenue on Monday evening to pray for her safe return.
Community members are launching a search of their own, set begin Tuesday morning at Hartford's Keney Park, which police have also scoured.
"We've searched different parts of the park just on hunches, or areas that are easily accessible," Rovella said.
Jackson has black hair and brown eyes, stands 5 feet 3 inches tall and weighs about 125 pounds. Police said Jackson has a tattoo on her right wrist that says "Tasha," and rose tattoos on her right breast and right leg.
"We hope and pray for the best," Rovella said, "but we prepare for the worst."
Hartford police ask anyone with information on Jackson's whereabouts to call the department as soon as possible at 860-757-4214 and ask for Sgt. Andrew Weaver. You can also leave anonymous tips online on the Hartford Police Department's website.