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January 17, 2015

Missing West Philly brothers found safe

Missing Children Investigation
01162015_bellbrothers NBC Philadelphia/for PhillyVoice

Brothers Naziyr (5), Yashua (7), and Zair Bell (9) never arrived at the James Rhodes Elementary School on Friday.


Three boys from West Philadelphia who have been missing since Friday afternoon were found safe on Saturday afternoon, NBC Philadelphia reports. Zair, Yashua, and Naziyr Bell were found in good condition at their grandmother's house.

Police have not disclosed how the boys initially went missing. 

A father of three young boys has reported his children missing after officials at their West Philadelphia school, only a block away from home, said they never arrived on Friday. 

NBC Philadelphia reports that the boys, who range from 6 to 9 years old, were last seen around 8:15 a.m. on Friday morning when they left home to walk to the James Rhodes Elementary School at 49th and Parrish streets. 

The boys' father told investigators he believes that 9-year-old Zair Bell and his younger brothers, Yashua and Naziyr, age 7 and 6, respectively, are with his ex-wife. The two are involved in an ongoing custody dispute and the father, who retains full custody of one of the children and partial custody of the other two, says the mother has not responded to attempts to contact her since he discovered the boys were missing on Friday afternoon. 

Per the NBC Philadelphia report:

Police said Zair, the eldest boy, is 3-feet 7 inches tall and about 75 pounds; Yashua is 3-feet 5-inches tall and about 65 pounds; and Naziyr is 3-feet 2-inches tall and about 50 punds. 

Zair was wearing a brown coat and black sneakers; Yashua was wearing a blue and gray coat, and white and black sneakers; and Naziyr was wearing an orange, white and blue coat, and white sneakers, investigators said. 

All three had yellow shirts and blue khakis on, according to authorities. 

For those who may have information on the boys' whereabouts, the Philadelphia Police Department's Southwest Detectives can be reached at 215-686-3183 or 911.