New HampshireDepartment of JusticeOffice of the Attorney General

News Release

For Immediate Release
October 18, 2021

Contact:
Benjamin J. Agati, Senior Assistant Attorney General
Benjamin.J.Agati@doj.nh.gov | (603) 271-3671

Meghan C. Hagaman, Assistant Attorney General

Arrests made in New York City in Investigation Searching for Missing Elijah Lewis of Merrimack, New Hampshire

photo of elijah lewis

Elijah Lewis – Photo Taken In May, 2020

Concord, NH – Attorney General John M. Formella, New Hampshire State Police Colonel Nathan A. Noyes, and Merrimack Police Chief Brian K. Levesque announce that arrests have been made in the investigation searching for the missing child, Elijah Lewis, but the search for Elijah continues.

On October 17, officers of the New York City Transit Authority in the Bronx, New York, located and then arrested Danielle Denise Dauphinais, age 35, and Joseph Stapf, age 30, on warrants issued in this investigation in New Hampshire charging them with Witness Tampering and Child Endangerment. The witness tampering charges allege that they each asked other people to lie about Elijah and where he was living knowing that child protection service workers were searching for Elijah. The endangerment charge alleges that they violated a duty of care, protection or support for Elijah.

Dauphinais and Stapf will be arraigned in the Bronx County Criminal Court located at 215 East 161st Street in New York City, New York, at 12:30 P.M. today. The State of New Hampshire has sought their extradition. If they choose to waive formal extradition, they will be returned to New Hampshire for arraignment in Hillsborough County Superior Court, Southern District later this week.

Officials are continuing to search for Elijah and are requesting the public's assistance in locating him.

As previously reported, Elijah's unknown whereabouts were brought to the attention of authorities by DCYF on Thursday, October 14, 2021. The Merrimack Police Department immediately began an investigation, and was assisted later that day by the New Hampshire State Police and the New Hampshire Department of Justice. Elijah was never reported missing to authorities prior to this time. Elijah's photo is attached to this release as well.

Anyone with information on Elijah's whereabouts is asked to contact the Merrimack Police Department's Crimeline at (603) 424-2424 or New Hampshire State Police Communications at (603) 223-4381 or 603-MCU-TIPS (603-628-8477). Lead Investigator Detective Sergeant Kelly Healey, Major Crime Unit, can be contacted directly at Kelly.A.Healey@dos.nh.gov.

Based on the information currently known to investigators, there does not appear to be any danger to the public. The investigation is ongoing and additional information will be released as it becomes available while protecting the integrity of the investigation.

New Hampshire Department of Justice
33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301
Telephone: 603-271-3658