A mother and father are pleading for their son's safe return on Red Table Talk.
On Wednesday's episode of the hit Facebook Watch series, David Robinson and Melissa Edmonds spoke about their missing son, Daniel Robinson, and the difficulties they've faced in getting the police to take seriously the fact that they cannot locate the 24-year-old.
Joining a roundtable with co-hosts Jada Pinkett Smith and her mother Adrienne Banfield-Norris, as well as former federal prosecutor Laura Coates and Elizabeth Smart — who was kidnapped from her bedroom at age 14 — Edmonds teared up seeing a picture of her son, who disappeared in Arizona back in June. The geologist was last seen at a job site in a remote part of Buckeye, ABC15 reported.
"Just looking at him is so difficult. We want to talk to him, we want to hug him. Daniel is my hero," she said during the episode, before a voicemail Daniel left for his mother played, where he expressed his love for her.
When asked by Pinkett Smith, 50, when it was "decided that something was not right," David said that he received a phone call from his daughter on June 23 that one of Daniel's coworkers was looking for him and he was not responding to any means of communication.
"I just knew immediately that things wasn't right because Daniel, he would never, ever, ever not answer his phone first of all, and the second thing is not tell us where he is going," David said.
David, who has since relocated to Arizona to lead the search for his son, explained that he called local police to report his child as missing, though he said they told him that they had canceled a search for him because "he is an adult."
"When I heard that, that was unacceptable to me. So I grabbed everything I could and I started driving. I made it out here and I've been here since June the 26th searching for my son," he said, later reiterating that he hasn't received "any support" from authorities.
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Red Table Talk
During his conversation on RTT, David also explained how Daniel's car was found the following month after he went missing. There, Daniel's cell phone, wallet and keys were found with the vehicle, and police said in a previous statement that "no foul play is suspected."
"When I received the call ... the first thing the detective said to me was, 'Hey, Mr. Robinson. We found your son's vehicle.' That just took my breath away that maybe I'd hear something else horrible," he said.
When he asked police when they had found the car, they told him that it was discovered the night prior and they did not alert him because, as David recalled, they didn't "want to disturb" his sleep. "That made me uptight," David said.
"My son's clothing, everything he had on his body, was about three feet away from the vehicle in a pile. They said the vest he wore the day he went missing was another foot away," David continued. "His cell phone was in the vehicle, work computer. His phone was in his pants pocket in the pile."
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David previously told PEOPLE that having Daniel's story featured on RTT was "extremely important," not only to them as a family, but to their search.
"To have Daniel's story be featured on Red Table Talk simply means that the show understands our pain, our suffering, and they will do everything they can to make sure our story is being told," he said. "It's very important to have people on our side. We love Jada and her family. They are a part of our own family now."
David added that as he continues to look for Daniel, his eyes have been opened to the many other families out there going through similar things.
"A lot of families of missing persons never get answers, or they never get heard," he said. "Their loved ones are still missing. I encourage everyone to join me and other families of missing people to try to make changes in a way that police approach missing persons. For instance, having a sense of urgency and an expedient response to every missing persons case. The [Gabby] Petito case should be a template of how all cases should be handled when a person is missing."
Anyone with information on Daniel Robinson's whereabouts is urged to contact a tip line established by his family at (803) 200-7994.