You may remember that on Sunday, we brought you the frightening story of Lily Everett (also known as Lily Baumann), a two-year-old girl from Sunrise, Florida. She has been missing ever since her mother, Megan Everett, skipped town rather than let her spend a week with her dad, Robert Baumann, per a custody agreement. Since Lily was eight months old, her mother has been dating and living with Carlos Lesters, a “Confederate flag-waving gun enthusiast” who has turned Everett’s head with extreme right-wing views. Everett now believes that vaccines are evil, and wanted Lily homeschooled rather than have her learn about black history.
When Baumann came to pick up Lily on May 13, he found Lesters waiting for him. Lesters told Baumann that Everett was gone and had taken Lily with her. Later, it emerged that Everett had left a note saying that she was not willing to “let a judge tell me how my daughter should be raised,” and also objected to Lily being vaccinated. Everett is now facing federal charges of flight across state lines to avoid prosecution, in addition to state charges of kidnapping, interference with custody and concealing a minor contrary to a court order.
According to Sunday’s (Fort Lauderdale) Sun-Sentinel, that same note called Baumann a “great dad” — or so we thought. However, sometime yesterday the Sun-Sentinel appended a correction that, in light of what has emerged about Lily’s living situation, is absolutely chilling.
An earlier version of this article indicated that the letter left by Everett was addressed to Baumann. It was addressed to Lesters. The Sun Sentinel apologizes for the error.
Here’s what we know so far about this “great dad,” Carlos Lesters.
He sees nothing wrong with letting a two-year-old girl play with boxes of live ammunition. He carries a gun on his person all day, and kept guns in places where Lily could easily reach them. This concerned a judge enough that he not only refused to award Everett full custody, but gave both Everett and Lesters a severe tongue-lashing about letting Lily around guns. And as I already mentioned, Lesters doesn’t want Lily vaccinated and would rather have her homeschooled than let her learn about black history. What’s more, when Sunrise police came to Lesters’ house after Baumann alerted them to Lily’s disappearance, Lesters told them that Everett was more than willing to “live her life as a fugitive.” Although Lesters hasn’t been formally charged yet, it’s a safe bet that law enforcement and prosecutors have put the fear of God into him. Take your pick of potential charges — aiding and abetting a fugitive? Child endangerment?
Small wonder that Everett’s family is siding with Baumann. Her mother, Pam, said that Megan’s state of mind is such that Lily is best served being with Baumann. Baumann and the Everetts have started a Facebook group to draw attention to their cause, “Bring Lily Home.” They managed to download numerous pictures and screenshots from Lesters’ and Megan Everett’s Facebook pages before they were deleted. Some of them are far too disturbing to share online, including pictures of Lily sitting within reach of a gun.
According to a post from Megan’s older sister, Stephanie, the Everetts and Baumann believe that Megan and Lily could be in south Georgia or the Louisville area; Lesters has family in both areas. They may also be in Virginia. Lesters has ties with the Virginia Flaggers, a Confederate enthusiast group based near Richmond; he and Megan took Lily to several of their events even when a judge ordered them not to do so. It’s possible they may even be in North Carolina, where Megan has family. They haven’t ruled out that she is still somewhere in Florida. At last report, Megan Everett was driving a silver Saturn with Florida license plate 421-MLE.
Anyone who has knowledge about Everett and/or Lily’s whereabouts is urged to call your local police department or FBI branch. You can also call the Sunrise Police Department at 954-746-3600 or Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-8477.
Edited by D.H.