The family of Elnaz Hajtamiri, reportedly abducted in mid-January from a home in Wasaga Beach, will take out advertising in their quest to find the Richmond Hill woman and track down those responsible for her disappearance.
Cathleen Lewis, a public relations professional hired by the Hajtamiri family, said she will launch a billboard advertising campaign in the coming days.
The campaign will be financed through a crowdfunding drive (www.gofundme.com/f/bring-elnaz-home) that aims to raise $25,000.
Hajtamiri, 37, was abducted from the home of a relative in Wasaga Beach Jan. 12, allegedly by three men who identified themselves as police officers, and claimed to have a warrant for her arrest, according to the OPP. After overpowering the homeowner, the men dragged Hajtamiri to a waiting vehicle and fled, police said.
Lewis said the first step is to get the fundraiser to the $8,500 mark in order to do four weeks of advertising on buses, including in Brampton, the hometown of two individuals charged by police in April in connection with an alleged assault on Hajtamiri Dec. 21, 2021 that reportedly took place in the parking garage of her Richmond Hill home.
Hajtamiri had moved to Wasaga Beach temporarily following the alleged attack.
Police arrested 23-year-old Riyasat Singh in April in connection with the Dec. 21 incident. Singh faces charges of attempted murder, attempted kidnapping, possession of property obtained by crime over $5,000, and mischief under $5,000.
A second suspect in that incident, Harshdeep Binner, also faces charges of attempted murder, kidnapping, and other crimes. He has not yet been arrested, and police are seeking the public’s help to locate him.
“We’re trying to get more leads regarding Elnaz, and also the second suspect who has not been arrested yet,” Lewis said. “We’re concentrating on Brampton because we, and the police, think that there are ties to that community.”
She said the strategy may change over time, and the campaign may go farther afield.
As of May 12, more than $3,500 (U.S.) had been raised. Lewis launched the crowdfunding page about a month previously, but only recently began promoting it.