HAMPTON — Police here have arrested the mother of a missing 2-year-old boy who authorities now believe is dead.
Hampton Police Chief Terry Sult, during a news conference Friday night, identified the mother as 34-year-old Julia L. Tomlin — the chief said the search for Noah Tomlin is intensifying. Noah was last seen around 1 a.m. Monday, and his mother reported him missing at 11 a.m. that day.
Julia Tomlin is charged with three counts of felony child neglect.
Sult said police don’t have specific information pointing to a landfill around 10 miles from Noah’s home, but have spent the last few days searching it based on past experience. The FBI is assisting.
Sult, however, said “based on the highly coordinated investigation we believe him [Noah] to be deceased.”
In the days following Noah’s disappearance, police searched the immediate area of Buckroe Beach with the help of local law enforcement agencies, state police and the FBI.
The search and investigation teams interviewed the boy’s mother, reached out to relatives out of state and searched in nearby bodies of water, landfills and other areas with multiple teams, drone surveillance and dogs, authorities said. Police even stopped trash collection in Noah’s neighborhood.
Sult said the city’s Child Protective Services department is working to make sure Julia Tomlin’s other children are safe. It’s unclear whether she has an attorney.
When asked what led police to believe Noah is dead, Sult said he could not go into investigative details at this time.
“The investigation is continuing, we’re not excluding anything,” Sult said.
In regards to Julia Leanna Tomlin’s other children, Sult said “her other children are being taken care of, we have child protective services involved and we are making sure they are safe ––– some are with family members and have been for some time.”
“At the end of the day, that is one of our number one priorities, to make sure they’re okay,” Sult added.
It is unclear if there are other suspects involved in Noah’s disappearance.
If anyone has any information, call HPD at 757-727-6111 or 888-LOCK-U-UP to remain anonymous.