The father of Derion Vence, the only suspect in the case of missing Maleah Davis, spoke out from his home in St. Louis.
In an interview with the IckedMel YouTube Channel run by Melvin Cedeno, Joe Vence Sr. came out to defend his son - and add another potential suspect in Maleah's abduction.
Joe told the interviewer that while his son's story of being attacked and kidnapped while checking a tire sounds far-fetched, he asks the public to hold back judgement.
Joe claims that his son was the most responsible adult in Maleah's life, and that he suspects Maleah's mom, Brittany Bowens, should be investigated.
"I really believe either she has something to do with it, like he's been set up in some type of way," Joe said. "I know he didn't do anything to her because he loves her. He's been taking care of her since she was like 1-year-old."
"Yeah, I believe my son is innocent and I believe his story," Joe said. "Derion had those kids most of the time, he's the one who took care of the kids."
He also addressed the allegations made by Maleah's mother, that Derion abused and molested the little girl. Derion's dad says the allegations fabricated.
"Why would you leave your child at home with him if he's doing all of these things?" Joe said.
A surveillance picture shared by a source close to the case shows the last time Maleah was seen alive. Wearing a pink tutu, she was walking back into the family apartment with Derion on Tuesday, April 30.
On the same day, her mother flew out of town. Police have verified her trip.