10 Years ago Kaya Centeno Mysteriously Vanished, No One Knew Until Now
Investigators in California didn't figure out Kaya Centeno was missing until authorities were called to the parents home for alleged abuse claims. Now the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has created an age-enhanced photo of what an 18-year-old Kaya would look like today.
On July 24, 2020, police in Rohnert, CA began investigating claims of abuse after authorities in Mexico reached out to child protective services in Sonoma County with a complaint. According to a Rohnert Park press release, a brother and sister, ages 15 and 17, were living in Mexico. They went to authorities with serious claims about their adoptive parents in the United States and abuse they suffered while living in the home.
The victims said they were allegedly physically, sexually and emotionally abused by Jose, 53, and Gina, 50, Centeno over a span of 8 - 10 years. At the time the report was made, the teens were living south of the border with extended family of the Centenos. The press release says the Rohnert Park Police and the FBI were able to work with Child Protective Services to pull the children from Mexico and place them in a safe location. The teens were then forensically interviewed further.
According to the press release, detectives secured a search warrant for the Centeno home and "found evidence to corroborate the victim's statements about the abuse."
During the investigation, the children also revealed they have not seen their older sister in many years and that she was young when she vanished. The third child is identified as Kaya Centeno and she would have turned 18-years-old on May 23. It is believed Kaya disappeared sometime between 2010 - 2012 and at the time was between eight to 10-years-old. Kaya was attending John Reed Elementary School until she was withdrawn for homeschool purposes, reports add. All three children were adopted in 2008, reports add.
Rohnert Park police Sgt. Keith Astley told the Press Democrat, “We want to find Kaya. We want to hear from anybody who knows Kaya. Have they seen Kaya? When was the last time they saw Kaya? Kaya was in the household and then she was not.”
It was after this discovery when police teamed up with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to create an age enhanced photo of what Kaya may look like today. At the time of her disappearance Kaya stood 3 feet 6 inches tall and weighed 50 pounds. She has brown hair and brown eyes and may go by the name Kaya Whitney Kazzee.
The Press Democrat reports the victims were given a reason why their sister had not been seen in years, but police will not disclose what was told to them.
As for Jose and Gina Centeno both are being held at the Sonoma County Jail on an $18 million bail. They were initially arrested and charged with aggravated kidnapping, but since then many other charges have been added, including nine counts of sexual abuse for claims made by the 17-year-old child against Jose Centeno.
Their next court date is set for October 5, 2020.
If you have any information about this case, please contact the Rohnert Park Public Safety Department directly: 707-584-2612.