Netflix’s Girl in the Picture reopened a long-standing mystery about the identity of Michael Anthony Hughes’ biological father. Hughes' kidnapping and eventual murder raised a lot of speculation about the identity of his biological father, forming part of Netflix’s focus in the recently-released documentary. Since then, two persons of interest have popped up as Hughes’ possible fathers: Kevin Brown and Gregory Higgs.
Girl in the Picture is a true-crime documentary on the blood-curdling crimes of Franklin Delano Floyd, who is currently on death row for the 1989 murder of Cheryl Ann Commesso, who was not his first or only victim. To date, he is a person of interest in the murder of Suzanne Marie Sevakis, whom he abducted as a child and later married. Floyd made Sevakis go under different aliases during her captivity, including Tonya Hughes and Sharon Marshall. During that time, Sevakis had a son, Michael Anthony Hughes, whose body has still not been found as of now.SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY
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After Sevakis’ death in 1990 (another mystery that remains unsolved), Floyd, under the alias of Clarence Hughes, claimed to be Sevakis’ husband and declared Michael Anthony Hughes his son. But DNA tests revealed that Floyd was not Hughes’ biological father, and the child was handed over to child protection services, who placed him in the care of foster parents who appear in Girl in the Picture, Netflix’s true-crime documentary. Investigations later revealed that Sevakis dated Gregory Higgs while living with Floyd in Phoenix, Arizona, and eventually got pregnant, later giving birth to Hughes in 1988. Sevakis had eloped with Higgs right before she was to go off to college, but Floyd tracked them down and brought her back. He later forced Sevakis to marry him and again changed her identity. After Sevakis' death, Floyd contacted Higgs about raising his biological son but never handed the boy over to Higgs. Another possible candidate for Michael Hughes' biological father is Kevin Brown, who Sevakis was dating just before her death.
What Happened To Michael Hughes?
More than 20 years later, the mystery surrounding Michael Hughes’ disappearance remains unsolved. Answers resurfaced in 2014 when Floyd confessed to FBI agents that he had murdered Hughes on the same day he disappeared in September 1994. Although Floyd gave the FBI a location where Hughes’ remains could be found, there still is no evidence other than Floyd's confession to prove that Hughes is alive or dead, as their search came up empty. If Michael Anthony Hughes were alive today, he'd be about 34 years old.
Floyd was handed a 52-year sentence in 1995 for Hughes’ kidnapping, as seen in the Netflix true-crime documentary. While it gave closure to the speculations surrounding Hughes’ disappearance, Floyd’s confession left more questions unanswered. It is unclear if the truth about Hughes’ location will eventually be revealed, given that Floyd is now 79, still on death row, and in poor health. Girl in the Picture joins Netflix’s library of harrowing true-crime documentaries like Our Father, Night Stalker, and Tiger King.