UTAH COUNTY, Utah (KUTV) — Six-year-old Terran Butler has been missing since Saturday. On Monday, police issued an Amber Alert, saying the criteria had been met that the boy could be in imminent danger of death or serious injury.
Police said Butler was taken by his biological mother, Emily Jolley, during a supervised visit.
“It's very possible that she is no longer in Utah, and we have no idea which direction she has gone,” said Timothy Butler, Terran’s father.
Timothy Butler said he was never married to Jolley. He said that after years of custody battles and attempts at shared custody, Utah courts awarded him full custody of Terran. He said this happened after Jolley made false allegations of abuse against him, and coached Terran on what to say to police when he was in preschool.
About a year ago, Butler said he started facilitating supervised visits with Terran and his mom. It was on one of those visits that the Butler said the supervisor let Jolley take off with Terran.
"We still don't know the details of whether or not she was an actual accomplice or an acquaintance before she became a supervisor, or she was manipulated,” Butler said.
He said there is good reason that Terran is not meant to be alone with his biological mother.
We do believe Terran to be in imminent danger, not necessarily of any track history of Emily being a physically abusive person, but obviously a long history of emotional abuse that she has subjected Terran to. Mental instability, and a group of dangerous individuals that she has chosen to associate herself with."
Butler and his girlfriend, Amelia Meneses, who considers herself a second mother to Terran, said they think Jolley had been planning to run away with Terran for months, even years.
“Very possible that she's off the grid somewhere, so I think camping or hiking. She's talked about going off-grid before. So that's a possibility, but we do believe there is a group of people that she is with, that are helping her,” Meneses said.
That group could be people like Jolley, who Butler said consider themselves sovereign citizens.
"Basically, it's a group of individuals the FBI has considered a domestic terrorist group,” said Butler.
He said the group doesn't recognize the government and feel laws don’t apply to them.
Meneses said Jolley even brought paperwork from the group to one of her supervised visits with Terran.
"At that visit, she pulled out some paperwork from this new government — whatever she belongs to — and had a 5-year-old sign his name, and she was getting a fingerprint basically relinquishing his rights as a U.S. citizen, is what this document had said,” she said.
Butler and Meneses said they have faith the police will find Terran. Until then, they look at his schoolwork and drawings that are waiting for him when he gets back.
"I don't think the reality of the situation has hit us,” said Butler
It's shocking. I tried to fold his cute little clothes and I just couldn't because he's not here to wear them,” Meneses said.
Unified Police said they have had a couple of leads come in, but nothing has panned out yet. They said they still need the public’s help finding any sign of Emily and Terran. Any information is helpful.
If you see Butler or Jolley, call police at 801-840-4000 or 911.