August 23, 2009:
Putnam County investigators say they don’t think that Misty Croslin-Cummings has been straight with them as they continue to investigate the disappearance six months ago of Haleigh Cummings from her father’s home in Satsuma.
In a news release marking the child’s sixth birthday Monday, investigators said the child’s biological parents, Ronald Cummings and Crystal Sheffield, were not suspects.
But for the first time, they don’t think Haleigh was abducted by a stranger. They said, Misty Croslin, who was baby-sitting the girl when she vanished from her father’s mobile home in February, “continues to hold important answers in the case.”
“She has failed to provide any sort of detailed accounting of the hours during the late evening and early morning of Haleigh’s disappearance. Furthermore, physical evidence at the scene contradicts Misty’s sketchy account of her evening activities.”
Croslin married Cummings about a month after Haleigh’s disappearance. Their telephone in Welaka has been disconnected and it is not known if Croslin has an attorney.
According to the news release, investigators have received more than 4,000 leads, all of which have been followed up.
They have conducted 138 formal interviews and several hundred informal ones. DNA samples were collected from many of those interviewed.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement processed the crime scene and did analysis on DNA and fingerprint evidence, none of which has identified a suspect.
Thousands of acres have been searched by air, on foot and by horseback. Divers have combed the water areas near where Haleigh disappeared.
“Sheriff (Jeff) Hardy wants to assure the public, but mainly Haleigh’s family, that we will continue to aggressively pursue this case,” the news release said.
Also Monday, a Texas-based search group said it would conduct another search for Haleigh Cummings.
Tim Miller, director of Texas EquuSearch, said the 50 group members and volunteers would search in four to six weeks. He said he thinks weather and vegetation conditions will be more conducive to finding the girl.
August 27, 2009:
WFTV-Channel 9 reported that Misty Croslin failed a lie dector test. Misty Croslin/Cummings was the last person to see missing Haleigh Cummings alive.
Misty Croslin says she was with Haleigh inside a mobile home in Satsuma when someone took the girl in the middle of the night back in February.
Ronald Cummings, Haleigh’s father, married Croslin almost immediately after Haleigh’s disappearance.
The couple asked Texas EquuSearch to return to Central Florida to help look for the girl and clear their names.
EquuSearch arranged for Croslin to take a lie detector test, which the group says she “failed miserably.”
Texas EquuSearch turned their findings over to Putnam County deputies who say they’re not surprised.
Croslin says she was pressured to take the test. But Texas EquuSearch founder Tim Miller denies that claim.
Deputies say they don’t have enough evidence to charge Croslin with any crime.
August 29, 2009
Members of Equusearch, the Texas-based search team, are once again searching an area near the home of Ronald Cummings, whose 5-year-old daughter Haleigh Cummings vanished from the family’s trailer in March.
Myfoxorlando is reporting that under hypnosis, Ronald Cumming’s 17-year-old wife Misty Croslin Cummings told searchers to look for Haleigh near a rose left in an undisclosed area in Putnam County.
Based on that tip, Equusearch on Saturday headed back out to Satsuma to search for leads in the case.
According to several news sources, while Misty was undergoing and completely failing the battery of tests being administered, she made a comment that indicated she may know where to search for Haleigh. She told investigators they needed to double-check a patch of ground marked by a single plastic rose.
“She said there was a place that was not searched very well and that we should look for a red rose, and she gave us the location,” said Steph Watts, who recorded the sessions for EquuSearch.
“We went and we looked, and we found it, and the next day we took Putnam County investigators back there,” Watts said. “I don’t think they are going to dig where the rose is and find the body, but the fact that they went with us shows that they are following up on every lead.” EquuSearch is making plans to return to the area in the near future.
Misty Croslin-Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll
A lawyer for the mother of a missing Florida girl slammed the child’s father in an interview, saying the little girl was exposed to a “typical sex, drugs and rock-and-roll lifestyle” before she disappeared.
Her 24-year-old father, Ronald Cummings, reported hid daughter Haleigh Cummings missing at 3AM on Feb. 9 when he got home from work. Haleigh vanished from the Satsuma-area trailer home where she was being cared for by his 17-year-old wife Misty Croslin.
“The particular lifestyle that we believe is led by Misty and Ronald Cummings is one that essentially laid out the red carpet to something at some point happening to these children, and something did,” Kim Picazio, an attorney for Crystal Sheffield, said in an interview Wednesday.
She said Misty and Ronald Cummings lead “your typical sex, drugs and rock-and-roll lifestyle that ( Misty Croslin Photo’s ) is not conducive to raising children.”
The family has reportedly been advised by legal counsel not to speak with the media. A call to Cummings’ lawyer also was not returned.
Misty Croslin has given various versions of the events of the fateful night to the media and Investigators from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office in 96 hours of questioning.
Misty claims she put Haleigh and 4-year-old brother Junior to bed, washed the bedding and then went to sleep in a bed 4 feet from the toddler. She awoke just before 3AM, went to the bathroom and upon returning to the bedroom found Kaleigh missing and a concrete block holding the backdoor open.
Rumors are spreading that Misty had a drug dealer boyfriend and she may have left that night and went to his house.
Putnam County Sherriff’s Office:
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Thursday, FDLE and Putnam County Sheriff’s officials said the investigation that led to Wednesday’s arrests of Ronald Cummings, Misty Croslin, Tommy Croslin, Hope Sykes and Donna Brock stemmed from a tip from a source with knowledge of the alleged dealing of oxycodone and hydrocodone.
“We had a source come forward, and our investigator was very good at infiltrating. We were working on it about a month,” Putnam County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Johnny Greenwood said. Misty Croslin, Hank Croslin Jr. and Brock are incarcerated in the St. Johns County Jail. Cummings was moved to the Flagler County Jail. Sykes is in the Putnam County Jail.
All but Sykes were moved to jails outside of Putnam County for security reasons, according to Greenwood. Ronald Cummings and Misty Croslin were placed in separate jails to avoid the possibility of communication between them.
Misty Croslin is being held in lieu of $950,000 bail; Cummings, $500,000; Brock, $250,000; Sykes, $150,000; and Hank Croslin Jr., $100,000.
Misty Croslin is facing six counts of trafficking in prescription medications. Three counts of the same charge are pending against Cummings and one against Hank Croslin Jr., Sykes and Brock, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement Agent Dominick Pape said that potential maximum sentences if convicted are: Misty Croslin, 74 years; Cummings, 43 years; Brock, 25 years; Sykes, 15 years; and Hank Croslin, three years.
Pape said a multi-county task force is stepping up its investigations of prescription drug sales.
The ‘Jailhouse Letter’:
Kristina Prevatt, an inmate known to hang out with Misty Cummings, who was in the Satsuma home in February when Haleigh vanished, sent the above letter to her boyfriend. The letter became public when a Gainesville radio station obtained it from a private investigator.
The letter claims a man named Joe told authorities that Misty Cummings, Prevatt and a man named Greg were at a party when Haleigh got hold of some drugs and died. According to the letter, Joe said Haleigh’s body was put in a bag, which was placed in Prevatt’s car and taken to a pond.
The man whose name was difficult to read in the letter Kristina Rene “Nay Nay” Prevatt sent to her boyfriend from jail regarding questioning she received a few days ago about the disappearance of missing 6-year-old Haleigh Cumming of Satsuma, FL., has been identified as Joseph Franklin Pytko.