August 21, 2023

Black Netflix Engineer Missing After Uber Journey, Weeks After Starting New Role

Yohanes Kidane

Yohanes Kidane, 22, has been missing since August 14 after moving to San Jose, California, to start a role as a software engineer at Netflix.

He was last seen entering a black Toyota Camry with an Uber sticker on 28 N 4th St. San Jose wearing grey sweatpants, a black hoodie and black shoes.

The disappearance

Kidane had moved from New York to the Bay Area on July 26 to start his new role at Netflix; his family told local news channel KTVU. 

He had recently graduated from Cornell University with a degree in computer science from the College of Engineering. 

He started the position on August 7. One week later, he disappeared.

According to Kidane’s brother, the family could contact Kidance on the evening of Monday, August 14. They also reported that his phone tracker had yet to move from a spot near Golden Gate Bridge.

The family has contacted the police and flown from New York to the Bay Area, hoping to find their son.

Yohanes Kidane

What we know so far

On August 14, at 7.15 pm, video surveillance footage showed Kidane leaving his apartment building in downtown San Jose and getting into a black Toyota with Uber stickers.

“He said he was heading to San Francisco to maybe meet a friend. The last footage I’ve seen of him was leaving his apartment building and getting into a black Toyota Camry,” his older brother, Yosief Kidane, told Fox KTVU.

On Tuesday, a commuter found Kidane’s phone and wallet south of the Golden Gate Bridge near the Welcome Center. “Thirty bucks in cash was in his wallet, ID cards, phone untouched,” his brother added.

The police found his backpack the following day, but his two laptops and personal documents did not seem to have been touched.

A plea to the public

A poster released by his brother claimed he was wearing grey sweatpants, a black hoodie and black shoes. Kidane is described as 5 feet 8 inches and weighing around 150 pounds.

“We want to take him home. I need my son. I need my son,” said Kidane’s mother. “He’s a good man who has a bright future, very loving to his family.”

“We do have an active missing persons investigation involving Mr Kindane,” the San Jose Police Department wrote in a statement to Newsweek.

“There are no updates to share at this time, and the investigation is ongoing. We will circle back once we get any new information.”

Members of the public with information about Yohanes Kidane’s whereabouts can contact the San Jose Police Department at (408) 277-8900 (reference case number 23-227-0531) or his relatives at (585) 489-4880 or 585-500-5220.

Sara Keenan

Tech Reporter at POCIT. Following her master's degree in journalism, Sara cultivated a deep passion for writing and driving positive change for Black and Brown individuals across all areas of life. This passion expanded to include the experiences of Black and Brown people in tech thanks to her internship experience as an editorial assistant at a tech startup.