These are unedited reporter’s notes from TJ Hart. Thank you Mr.Hart


The Florida Department of Children and Families continues to investigate abuse allegations made by Crystal Sheffield, the mother of Haleigh Cummings regarding the status of Haleigh’s younger brother, Ronald Cummings Jr., who presently lives with his father.

DCF spokesman John Harrell says the agency has been given information and they are continuing to investigate.

Ronald Junior lives at his great-grandmother’s house in Welaka with his father, Ronald Cummings, and stepmother, Misty Croslin, after his 5-year-old sister vanished from their South Putnam home in February.

Crystal Sheffield retained South Floirda attorney Kim Picazio to help with the news media shortly after her daughter’s disappearance, and Picazio has continued to represent her in the DCF investigation.

Harrell said that even though the investigation is ongoing, DCF would not remove any child from a home unless they were in danger.

The tone at the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office today appears to be upbeat and as determined to find 5-year-old Haleigh Cummings today as it was February 10, 2009 when she was abducted from her Satsuma, FL home in the middle of the night.

I spoke with Lt. Johnny Greenwood at length this morning to see where the investigation is at this point. The quick answer is that they have received over 4,000 leads and have interviewed over 300 people so far.

One thing I discovered today is that most of the men and women investigating the disappearance of Haleigh Cummings are parents, too.  One could easily believe that beyond their jobs, they might also be invested in this case on somewhat of a personal level.

Lt. Johnny Greewood tells me the happiest day will come when he can call a press conference and announce that Haleigh has been returned safe and sound. But until then, Greenwood says the investigators on the case remain working at the same level of intensity as the day the little girl was reported missing.

Greenwood contends that until proven otherwise, it is the department’s belief that Haleigh is still alive.

I asked Greenwood if the case was taking its toll on the investigators. He simply resonded, “No one is complaining.”

Lt. Greenwood and I talked about some of the tips that have been received.
I told him of one account passed along to me that involved a couple from Europe who came into the area to pickup their grandchild shortly after Haleigh vanished. The tipster thought they may have been in town to “buy” Haleigh. I was told the couple would be easy to find since one of them was reportedly bitten by a monkey while in Putnam County.

Greenwood did say that a person in the area was indeed bitten by a monkey, but didn’t say much about that story beyond that. And honestly, I understand why he didn’t.

I asked Lt. Greenwood more about the night Haleigh vanished when she was reportedly being watched by her now-stepmother, Misty Cummings.  Greenwood didn’t have much to add other than the fact that Misty has now been questioned at least ten times by investogators and her timeline still remains inconsistent.

What exactly is the reason for the upbeat tone at the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office today is anybody’s guess. Hopefuly they are closing in Haleigh’s whereabouts and narrowing down the suspects in the case.

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