Phylicia Barnes, Missing North Carolina Teen, Found Dead Near Baltimore; Cause of Death Unknown


Question of Double Standard

The disappearance of the Alabama teen Natalee Holloway in Aruba nearly seven years ago sparked a media frenzy, as has the apparent abduction of the nursing student Holly Bobo in Tennessee. But news coverage was relatively sparse in Phylicia's case, raising accusations of a double standard in media coverage.

Speaking about the lack of national media coverage back in January, a Baltimore police spokesman said, "Birds are falling out of the sky in Arkansas and two headed calves, and this girl may lose her life."

The Baltimore mayor's office said it shared the concern about the possible existence of a double standard in the coverage of Phylicia's disappearance but was more distressed about the case because it was so heartbreaking.

"You see other cases that get attention, other kids that go missing and it's immediately up on television and you know, I know there's frustration," said Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.

Bealefeld told reporters he was saddened at the discovery of the body, but that it likely would spur the investigation.

"All of us ... have been praying and hopeful for a different outcome," Bealefeld said. "Our goal simply is to bring closure to Phylicia Barnes' family and find out what happened and hold those responsible accountable."

ABC News' David Kerley and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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