Community groups, law enforcement search for Antoine Whittley

Online fundraiser launched to support Antoine Whittley's family
Photo of Antoine's parents (on left) and of Antoine (on right) credited to Adamika Village.

Community groups and law enforcement on Monday continued the search for missing 17-year-old Kennedy High student Antoine Whittley, who was last seen on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge Wednesday night.

In a statement today updating the public on the missing persons case, Richmond police said they have been searching both land and water for Antoine and have sought the assistance of the U.S. Coast Guard as well as Contra Costa County and Solano County Marine Units.

At 3 p.m. today, community groups were set to meet at 311 Marina Way South and move toward the Richmond shoreline to help look for clues in a case that is not being treated by police as a criminal investigation. The community search party was organized in part by the nonprofit Adamika Village.

Just before 8:30 p.m. Wednesday night, Antoine was visiting a friend’s house in the 300 block of Marina Way South when he obtained a ride share to return home to the Point Richmond area, police said. About 10 minutes after being picked up, the ride share driver dropped Antoine off on the bridge, and that was the last time he was seen, police said.

According to police, the ride share driver, who is cooperating with the police investigation and is not considered a person of interest, accidentally missed the last exit in Richmond when he ended up on the bridge. Something happened between the driver and Antoine that prompted the driver to stop the car mid-span of the bridge, police said, although details about that encounter were not provided.

“Detectives have interviewed the driver and are confident the driver did not have anything to do with his disappearance,” police said, adding, “Our investigation also shows that Antoine voluntarily left the ride share vehicle.”

Antoine apparently spoke with a friend on the phone while he was on the bridge at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday night.

“A review of Antoine’s cellular telephone records show his last call to be with his friend at 8:30 p.m. and the cellular phone pinged in the area the Richmond-San Rafael
Bridge,” police said.

In a video posted online, Antoine’s parents pleaded for the community assistance in the search for their son.

Antoine stands 5’9” and weighs about 130 pounds.  He was last seen wearing a black Covid-19 mask, hooded Reebok sweatshirt and black/green pants with an orange/green/gray camouflage stripe on both legs. He was carrying a backpack with personal belongings, police said.

Anyone with information related to this case is encouraged to contact Detective
Kris Palma at (510) 621-1276, at [email protected] or at Richmond’s
anonymous tip line at (510) 307-T1PS (8177) or Non-Emergency 24 hour number at (510) 233-1214.