BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Breanna Boatman’s family has not seen or heard from her since the end of August. Boatman’s father Darrin has been searching for his daughter since August 30th and now he’s asking for help.
“I don’t think any father could prepare themselves for this, but it gives me anxiety and I’m out in these streets trying to find her,” said Darrin Boatman.
Breanna is a 32-year-old pregnant mother of three whose struggles with substance abuse led to her becoming homeless. Her father says that even though she’s been homeless, she never let anything come between her and her children.
“Her daughter’s birthday is October 2nd and she never called or came over, so for me, that’s a red flag,” said Boatman. “I thought maybe she was just on the streets somewhere, but the more and more I thought about it, even if she was on the streets, she always called her daughter on her birthday.”
On August 30th, Boatman says his daughter got on a bus with some friends to attend a funeral service in Los Angeles. The friends returned to Bakersfield without her.
According to Boatman, because of his daughter’s homelessness, he did not file a missing persons report right away, but after not hearing from Breanna for a month, he filed a report at the end of September.
“I’ve been walking around late at night with the homeless, trying to figure out where all the homeless people go when they’re getting kicked out of these parks,” Boatman said.
Boatman says that when Breanna started struggling, he did what he thought was right and let her go through tough times, hoping she’d come out stronger.
“She fell into the wrong crowd, and me trying to help her, I thought I was teaching her tough love by letting her go through what she was going through, always trying to get her to go to rehab so she can get back to who she was,” said Boatman.
Since her disappearance, he’s questioning whether he could have stepped in sooner.
“I’m having visions of my daughter being tortured somewhere,” Boatman said. “Certain people out on the streets, they’re saying that girls are being taken and trafficked all the time, and I’m hoping that we find her before she goes through unnecessary, unbearable pain.”
Boatman becomes emotional when he talks about the search for his daughter.
“When I was first told stories like this, I thought it was just something on TV, and now that I’m feeling it as a parent, now I know it’s real, and I don’t want somebody else to have to go through what I’m going through, because it’s a lot of sleepless nights,” Boatman said.
Boatman feels that as the protector of his family, he should have the answers about where Breanna is, and it’s been difficult for him not to know.
“My granddaughter asks me almost every day, ‘Have you heard anything? Have you seen her?’” said Boatman. “I’m the guy they come to for the answers. I’m the protector of my family and it hurts me to not have the answer to give her.”
Boatman says that even though his daughter is unhoused and struggles with substance use, she deserves to be found and he asks the community for any help they can give.
“Giving the police leads or even giving me a lead, that we can take care of this, and hopefully bring my daughter home safe and sound,” said Boatman, “And not just for my daughter. What I’m realizing, is we have to reach out as a community and hopefully stop this from happening to everyone's daughters and sons.”
If you have any information on the whereabouts of Breanna Boatman, you are encouraged to call the Bakersfield Police Department at 327-7111.