Victim’s Voice: After extensive search, son’s body found weeks later at same location

SHAWN RIVAS

Pam Rivas lost her son Shawn Rivas to a fentanyl overdose in July 2021. The mother said the drug was allegedly sold to her son by a known drug dealer.

In the months that followed, Rivas said she begged BRPD to investigate her son’s death including multiple emails to the police chief himself. In fact, Rivas said she even met personally with Mayor Sharon Weston Broome. who called BRPD Chief Murphy Paul on speaker phone in front of Rivas.

“The first thing she said was, ‘I have Pam Rivas in my office here and just heard her son’s story. She just told me BRPD has done nothing and you have not met with her.’ She told him she needed his word that Murphy would meet with me soon. I’ve never heard from him,” said Rivas.

Rivas said her son’s badly decomposed body was discovered 3.5 weeks after his death. The suspicious thing however is that Rivas, friends and BRPD officers searched the exterior of the property on Ford St. repeatedly and never found anything. But after a call that the feds would get involved if a body was not found, her son’s body was found at the same address, in a driveway.

“That body was not there when I walked up and down that driveway. I can tell you that body was not there. I got a call that officers were tipped off to my son’s body at that address. My son’s body was brought back from where ever it was and it was placed in that driveway. So at that point, the investigation left the missing person’s detective and went to a homicide detective,” said Rivas.

Below is Pam Rivas’ story in her own words:

Shawn disappeared on July 22, 2021. The last time I saw him was on July 21, 2021 before I went to bed. I had no idea where my son was but I knew he was dead because I knew that through my spirit.

My oldest son is an FBI agent. I have six children and lost two in a matter of three weeks to overdoses.

I called BRPD and made a missing person’s report. He was missing for 3.5 weeks. I found out through the police officer who was at my house for the missing person’s report, she told me to call all my son’s friends to ask what happened. I said, ‘I already called all his friends and no one has seen him.’ She said, ‘Go to his Facebook page and maybe you will see someone you can recall.’ I did that and saw a friend that I remember my son talking about.

I called him via Facebook and he told me that he had picked up my son from our home and drove Shawn to 4707 Ford St. in Zion City off of Plank Rd.

It didn’t make any sense to me why my son would be there. He told me that Shawn wanted to buy some drugs. My son was going to Bethany. He was a server. I didn’t know he was using drugs or on drugs so that was odd to me.

That’s when I learned of a guy named Hakeem Allen, whose nickname is “K.” This house on Ford St. is supposedly a trap house. So what I learned was that Hakeem and Shawn went into the house and supposedly, Shawn bought some heroine from Hakeem. They came back outside and the friend says he waited in the car. Shawn got back in the car. The two sat in the car and split the heroine and did it in the car. He said they were sitting there and Shawn snorted his and the friend injected his.

His friend told me, ‘While I was injecting myself, Shawn jumped out of the car and took off on Ford St. I said ‘What are you doing man?’ I drove around and I never saw him. He disappeared. Hakeem pulled back up and Hakeem asked me, ‘Where’s Shawn.’ I said, ‘I don’t know. He jumped out of the car.’ Hakeem and I walked around the house and we went around the block to find him.’

So then, a friend of mine and I went to the Ford St. house. Shawn’s friend was laying in the backseat because he was terrified telling us these are drug dealers. There was a camera in the front of the house. He was completely freaked out telling me there’s a camera and not to stop there because these people were dangerous.

I called the BRPD detective. BRPD went to the house and they walked around the house and did not see Shawn anywhere. BRPD told me it’s an abandoned house. I told them that they went in and bought drugs and there’s a camera in the front of the house.

I was told repeatedly that they don’t have enough evidence to go get a search warrant to get into that home. I kept asking how much more proof do you need. I had proof that Shawn, Hakeem and his friend were talking that morning.

Had that been the governor’s son, Murphy Paul’s son or anyone important person’s son, had their child gone missing at that house, BRPD would have busted that house down to find the body. I firmly believe his body was inside the house. The coroner’s report showed Shawn had 120 mg of fentanyl in his system and 2 mg can be deadly. No other drugs were in his system except some caffeine from a cup of coffee.

PAM & SHAWN RIVAS

For 3.5 weeks, I didn’t know where my son was. I even met the BRPD detective at that Ford St. home with a group of friends. We walked Ford St., walked around that house even though I was told you do not have permission to go on this property. I knew I was trespassing but I wanted to know where my son was. We walked up and down the driveway. We walked back to the shed. I knew in my spirit he was dead. We did a search of the whole neighborhood.

There was no body. We looked in a canal that runs along the subdivision. It was 100+ degrees around July 22nd. We’re outside and it’s really hot. Plus, usually birds indicate a dead body but there were no birds anywhere.

I’m a Christian. I’d been praying to the Lord to give me my son’s body.

That’s when a private investigator came into my life but I told him I could not afford him. He said he wanted to offer his help to find my son.

That private investigator reached out to a contact with the NAACP and told him ‘Her oldest son is an FBI agent and he too wants his brother’s body so if we don’t have a body by Wednesday, the feds are coming in.’

That call was on a Saturday. Monday morning, Shawn’s body showed up at the Ford St. house in the driveway.

I got a call from the BRPD detective and he said, ‘We have his body.’ BRPD got a call that the body was at the house. He said, ‘We’re here now with the coroner’s office and your son’s body was on a white fold out table and it had been slidden half underneath the car badly decomposed.’

At BRPD, they don’t want to investigate drugs and overdoses even though we have a statute on the books that an overdose can be considered second-degree murder.

Do you think BRPD did anything? Nothing! It makes me sick to my stomach because I’m not the only person this has happened to.

I emailed the mayor and chief together in Sept. 2021 and got no response. They did nothing. The detective assigned to Shawn’s case, ignored my calls. He called me twice. The first call was to tell me he is handling Shawn’s case. The second time he called was to tell me that BRPD just missed the body and even when all the family went looking, the family too just missed the body.

I responded with, “Are you kidding me? You’re going to tell me I didn’t see my own son’s body? You’re going to tell me I walked right past that car where my son’s body was found and didn’t even smell a body? Either you don’t want to work the case, either you don’t care about this case or you’re part of the problem.’ I thanked him and then I hung up.

I did not hear another word from anyone and it was Oct. 2021 by now.  

My cousin worked at State Police who said they couldn’t investigate because BRPD still showed the case as open. The only way State Police could step in was if BRPD asked State Police for help or if they closed the case.

A few months ago, I was invited to attend a conference. That’s where I saw the mayor and I walked up to her and said, ‘I’ve sent you a few emails and you haven’t responded.’ She grabbed my hand and started crying. She said she did not receive any of my emails and said that meeting was a “God-orchestrated meeting” and she wanted me to come meet her one-on-one in her office.

So I met with her and she was extremely compassionate and loving. She asked if I minded if she called Murphy Paul. She had him on speaker phone and the first thing she said was, ‘I have Pam Rivas in my office here and just heard her son’s story. She just told me BRPD has done nothing and you have not met with her.’ She told him she needed his word that Murphy would meet with me soon. I’ve never heard from him.

He is in a position of authority and everything that happens under him, is his responsibility. BRPD has become a joke. I feel he needs to resign. He’s not doing his job. When the cat is blind or not in the office, the mice are going to do whatever they want.   

My best friend’s husband had a friend at the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office so he reached out to them. Here we are two months later and the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office has done their job. Hakeem was arrested for selling drugs.”

Because Shawn Rivas’ death is a BRPD case, they would have to investigate and charge Hakeem with Rivas’ death, if they can prove it. The EBRSO Narcotics agents cannot investigate or charge Hakeem with Rivas’ death.

EBRSO could only investigate the allegation that Hakeem was selling drugs illegally.

Hakeem Allen was arrested by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Narcotics agents on Tuesday, Oct. 4th after a two-month long undercover drug investigation.

Deputies found eight guns, $71,000 in cash and Allen was arrested with several drug charges.  

The judge on duty this week to set bonds, Judge Tarvald Smith, set Allen’s bond at $43,000. That means 12%, which is what’s required to be paid when making bond, would be $5,160. Officials said Allen had more $3,000 cash in his pocket at the time of his arrest.

“Isn’t that lovely? This is what I’m talking about in the court system and they are just as guilty for the blood at the hands of these drug dealers,” said Pam Rivas in response to the bond. “It makes me realize that the battle I’m waging against the war on drugs and on the overdose death in this community, the judges that are allowing these dealers to walk out when they have that many charges on them, that’s a disgrace to the parents who have lost their loved ones, to law enforcement and anyone trying to make this a safer community.”  

Unfiltered with Kiran did not reach out to BRPD or the mayor’s office for a response to their report as neither will respond to calls or emails for comment saying UWK is not considered media and that they only interview with members of the media.

About Kiran Chawla 914 Articles
I'm an Emmy & Murrow Award winning investigative reporter who simply loves my job!

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