Khadijah Britton was last seen on the evening of February 7, 2018, reportedly being forced into her ex-boyfriend’s car at gunpoint. She has not been heard from or seen since. The pressing question now isn’t just “What happened to Khadijah?” It’s also “Where is she?” This Khadijah Britton wiki looks at the young woman’s life and the circumstances surrounding her disappearance.
Round Valley Reservation
Statistically speaking, Khadijah Britton started life at a socio-economic disadvantage. Britton lived in Covelo, a small community of around 1,200 within the Round Valley Reservation in the northwest corner of California.
Roughly 17% of the population is Native American, direct descendants of the six tribes that were ushered into Round Valley by white settlers in 1863.
More than 41% of Covelo residents live below the poverty line, and in 2013, the last time statistics were collected, the Round Valley Indian Tribes’ unemployment rate was 86%. At the time, California’s unemployment rate was just under nine percent.
For years now, Mendocino County has had a big problem with drug and alcohol abuse. The drugs of choice are methamphetamine and heroin. The rise in drug abuse echoes the rise in domestic violence.
According to statistics released by the National Institute of Justice in 2016, Native American and Alaska Native women are 1.6 times more likely to experience physical abuse by an intimate partner than their white peers. In fact, 84% of the estimated 2.6 million Native American women will experience physical violence. More than half will live through sexual violence.
This is the environment that Khadijah Britton lived in.
Drug and alcohol abuse, constant unemployment, incarceration, and a lack of access to community resources are all traits that many abusers share, including Negie Fallis IV, Khadijah Britton’s ex-boyfriend and the only suspect in her disappearance.
Who Is Khadijah Britton?
Khadijah Rose Britton was a proud tribal member of the Round Valley Indian Tribes. And her future looked extremely bright.
Her parents Jerry Britton Jr. and Connie Hostler certainly thought so.
The 5’9” teenager excelled in high school. She was the star of the girls’ basketball team, having been taught how to play by her mother and father while in elementary school. In Britton’s senior year of high school, she averaged an astounding 18 points per game and helped lead the team to a first-place finish in the North Central III league, where she was named co-MVP of the all-league team.
Britton was just as competitive, confident, and popular off court. She was known for her sense of humor, cracking jokes in class and playfully teasing classmates. It’s only fitting that in her junior year of high school, Britton was voted “Class Flirt.”
Britton was also known for being fiercely loyal and protective. If she saw a fight take place, she’d step in to defend friends.
In 2012, the bright and vivacious teen graduated from Round Valley High School with a GPA of 3.17. Britton had said that she wanted to pursue a sports-related career, like kinesiology. Her family hoped she would enroll in community college and take classes offered at the high school through Mendocino College.
Things didn’t go as planned. At least not for Khadijah Britton. Some of her friends left for college. Those who stayed behind either started to party harder or got pregnant. For Britton, it was a time to party.
She started to use drugs on a regular basis, mostly with friends of Negie Fallis: a much older crowd of people that her close friends did not associate with.
Kayla Bettega, a friend who had known Britton since preschool, said, “There were a lot of my classmates that could’ve went far and done a lot of things, but it’s just hard to get out of Covelo.”
Khadijah Starts Dating Negie
No one is really sure exactly when Britton began having a relationship with Fallis. But the honeymoon period was short-lived. If it ever existed at all.
As soon as they started seeing each other, it became her job to take care of his four children—especially the youngest.
In addition to being their de facto mother, Britton would do the housework and laundry, cook, put the kids to bed, and pick them up from school. Not surprisingly, the more time Britton spent with Fallis, the lower her confidence and self-esteem got.
“I could see that he changed her, yeah,” Bettega said. “She was still her same, happy self, but she was scared to get growled at if she did something wrong because he was so possessive.”
Possessive, angry…Fallis had a number of shortcomings.
In 2012, two years before he met Britton, Fallis was convicted of possession of a controlled substance, endangering the health of a child, possession of drug paraphernalia, and carrying a switchblade longer than two inches. He also had a history of abusing his partners.
Negie Fallis was sentenced to six years in state prison but was released early in 2014. He made his way to Mendocino County, which is where he met Khadijah Britton.
Prison, it seems, accomplished nothing when it came to rehabilitation. Fallis was as possessive, insecure, violent, and irrational as ever.
In late 2017, just as winter was descending on Round Valley, Kayla Bettega’s father and brother were driving around when they saw Britton walking along a road. They stopped to offer her a ride. She refused. Or had to. Fallis would get mad if she accepted a ride, she said.
Throughout the winter, Britton’s relationship with Fallis continued to disintegrate. While visiting her mom, Britton would say she was tired of him, that Fallis was disrespecting her.
When asked if Fallis was abusing her, the young woman would say no.
“I’d say, ‘Would he hit you?’ And she’d say, ‘No, Mommy, it’s nothing like that, Mommy,’” said her mom, Connie Hostler. “But I’ve been getting worried that he’d been doing stuff like that to her. I did try to get her over to a shelter in Redding, and she said, ‘Why are you trying to get rid of me, Mommy?’ I said, ‘I’m not, baby. I’m trying to keep you alive.’ She didn’t see that.”
January 29, 2018 – Khadijah Britton Assaulted by Negie Fallis IV
On this day, like many times before, Britton and Fallis had a fight. She left and was picked up by her friend Felix, who took her to his grandmother’s house. It didn’t take long for the 37-year-old Fallis to track down where 23-year-old Britton had gone.
He appeared at Felix’s grandmother’s house, screaming for his girlfriend to get out of the house. When Britton appeared in the doorway, witnesses say he pulled her by the hair and yelled at her, telling her she was a whore.
Fallis yanked the terrified Britton to the ground and dragged her toward a white Mustang. It was there that he punched her in the face and kicked her in the chest. He then struck Britton in the head with a hammer.
He told the bloodied Britton to get in the car, and that if she didn’t, or if she tried to escape, he’d kill her. She obeyed. The pair continued to fight in the car. But Fallis’ rage was also focused on Felix.
After her boyfriend got out of the car to confront Felix, Britton fled, hiding behind a tree stump in a neighboring field. She came out only after a furious Fallis drove away.
At around 1:00 a.m., on January 30, Khadijah Britton made her way over to where her father, Jerry Britton Jr., stepmother, Andrea Oliver, and their children lived. They answered the door to find Khadijah bloodied and bruised.
“She was just screaming, ‘He’s trying to kill me, he’s trying to kill me,’” Oliver said. “And she goes, ‘Get the babies on the floor, he’s going to shoot up the house.’”
Oliver called the police, and Khadijah gave them a statement.
The following day, Jerry took his daughter to the tribe’s domestic violence center. A counselor took pictures of the bruising on her face and body and bumps on her head. Khadijah and her counselor drafted a restraining order against Fallis.
To ensure Khadijah Britton wouldn’t have to go back to Fallis’ place, she was given new clothes, money for groceries, and a cell phone. Somehow, though, Fallis managed to either get at Britton or threaten her.
When her counselor came to get Britton on February 5, 2018 to take her to Ukiah for a hearing, the young woman pretended to be asleep. Britton never did manage to make it to court.
It was soon discovered that in the days following the hammer attack, Britton had been in contact with Fallis, exchanging text messages on her new cell phone.
February 7, 2018 – Khadijah Britton Goes Missing
On February 7, less than 10 days after the attack, Khadijah Britton went to the tribal police office and told them she didn’t wish to proceed with the charges against Negie Fallis.
When she left the police station, she is alleged to have said, “I did it, girls. I did it. I dropped the charges” to Fallis’ current girlfriend, Antonia Bautista-Dalson, 20, her twin sister, and their mother.
Britton’s family believes she was coerced into going to the police and dropping the charges. Fallis had a lengthy criminal history and had a lot to lose if he was charged with assault and kidnapping.
According to Mendocino County court records, Fallis had several domestic violence cases brought against him.
It is thought that Fallis had threatened to harm Britton’s younger brother if she went through with the charges. Knowing the kind of pain and suffering Negie Fallis could inflict, Britton acquiesced.
The witness who claims they heard Britton say she dropped the charges to Antonia Bautista-Dalson said she sounded relieved when she spoke.
That relief only lasted so long.
On February 10, three days after not hearing from Khadijah Britton, her stepmother filed a missing person’s report.
As is often the case with indigenous women, police didn’t suspect foul play or believe there was reason to be concerned. In fact, they said Britton had most likely gone back to Fallis and was hiding out with him; maybe she didn’t want to listen to her family nag her for going back to her ex.
Frustrated and knowing Britton was missing, they asked the police to, at the very least, put out a press release saying she hadn’t been seen in a number of