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Oakley Carlson

Update: Police Investigating House Fire After 5-year-old Vanishes, Parents Never Call for Help

New details have emerged in the case of a Washington state girl who remains missing after social services gave her back to her biological parents.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, neighbors of 5-year-old Oakley Carlson said they have not seen the child “in quite some time.” One person in the Oakland neighborhood said that it had been so long since Oakley was seen that the school bus eventually stopped coming to pick her up.

Grays Harbor Undersheriff Brad Johansson said Oakley was filed as missing after a concerned citizen called authorities Monday to perform a welfare check. Oakley’s parents, identified as Jordan Bowers and Andrew Carlson, are currently being held in jail on suspicion of manslaughter charges.

Jordan Bowers and Andrew Carlson/Police Handout

Investigators are now looking into a fire that started on the couple’s 300-acre property in November. Fox 13 reports that the suspects said they didn’t call for help about the fire because they could not find their cellphones. A friend set up a GoFundMe account for the pair.

“It’s unusual that a fire department wasn’t called, I would say,” Undersheriff Brad Johansson said, adding that there is a possibility that the child may be deceased.

Oakley’s foster mother, Jamie Jo Hiles, heard about the fire and contacted the Department of Children Youth and Families (DCYF) in November after seeing the GoFundMe account, which has since been deactivated.

“If no one has seen her, what could have happened to her? Was it the fire? Was it something else?” Hiles asked.

Hiles and her husband cared for Oakley for almost three years. Then, in 2019, the courts gave Oakley back to her biological parents. Despite contacting social services numerous times, Hiles and her family never heard from Oakley again.

Handout

“We told them [social services] several times this wasn’t a safe decision,” Hiles said. “We begged them – ‘please don’t let her go back, please don’t let her go back.’”

“They made a mistake. A big mistake. I told them in my last letter it was going to be on their shoulders if something happens to her.”

Anyone with information on Oakley should call the sheriff’s office at (360) 533-8765. You can also contact Detective Sgt. Paul Logan at (360) 964-1729 or email sodetectives@co.grays-harbor.wa.us. 

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[Feature Photo: Handout]