MANCHESTER, N.H. — Since we first reported the story of the 7-year-old girl in New Hampshire, there has been one major question; how does a child go missing for two year before it’s reported to police?
25 Investigates has been searching for answers to that question ever since the story broke in late December.
No one has been charged in connection to the disappearance of Harmony Montgomery. But 25 Investigates has been digging into the circumstances surrounding how she went from the custody of the Department of Children and Families in Massachusetts into the custody of her father in New Hampshire, a man with a lengthy criminal record in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
What we know so far about Harmony’s young life:
During a news conference Monday, January 3rd Manchester’s police chief discussed Harmony Montgomery was involved with child welfare agencies in both in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
“If there was some flaw in the system, I’m not saying there was, but if there was, where was it and how. It’s going to be addressed,” said Chief Allen Aldenberg.
Police announced in late December that Harmony was reported missing and hadn’t been seen in more than two years, since October of 2019.
25 Investigates obtained Massachusetts DCF records that reveal Harmony was bounced between her mother’s care and DCF for much of her young life. She was placed in the custody of her father Adam Montgomery in 2019, when Harmony was roughly 5 years old. The records stated “Custody of Harmony was returned to her father in February 2019. Once Harmony was returned to her father’s care/custody, her involvement with the Department ended as she does not live in Massachusetts.”
The records also state Montgomery was incarcerated during some of Harmony’s life prior to that.
A source told 25 Investigates that Harmony’s care and protection case unfolded in Essex County courts. What’s unclear is whether DCF ever conducted a home study before Harmony was placed with her father and whether any child welfare was checking in on her once that placement was finalized.
25 Investigates went to courthouses in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
We found Adam Montgomery has a criminal history dating back to 2007 in the Granite State for charges ranging from burglary to first degree assault to stalking.
In Massachusetts courts, we found a 2014 case out of Haverhill that charged Montgomery with armed robbery and assault with intent to murder. Police records indicate the shooting happened during a drug deal. Charges were later reduced but he served time in connection with the incident.
We contacted both DCF in Massachusetts and the Department of Children Youth and Families in New Hampshire.
A DCF spokesperson told us “Due to state and federal privacy requirements, the Department of Children and Families cannot confirm or deny if a family has history with the Department.”
25 Investigates has also confirmed the identity of Harmony’s mother. She too had a criminal history we uncovered pulling court records in Massachusetts. DCF has been involved with this mother for many years. She has not had custody of her daughter Harmony since February, 2019. And, again, police say Harmony went missing in October of that year. It’s unclear whether she’d had contact with Harmony since Montgomery was given custody. Boston 25 News also recently spoke with her father, Harmony’s biological grandfather.
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