ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – A Berkeley woman pleads for the return of her missing 12-year-old daughter. Police have a lead on where the girl is and who has her, yet the active search to bring her home is over.
After an Amber Alert last week about a possible kidnapping, police later determined the 12-year-old was a runaway. Investigators have a lead on a duplex in Baden, where she may have been staying recently, but there is no active effort to find her.
“I want my child home,” said the 12-year-old mother.
She wants her privacy to be protected now that it’s a personal family matter. However, she wants people to know she still has not seen her daughter.
“I want her home safe and sound. Then, I never gave permission for anyone to go up to the school and take her from the school,” the mother said.
Police had determined it was the mother’s 30-year-old daughter who picked the 12-year-old up from Ferguson Middle School. An AMBER alert went out when mom said she did not recognize her older daughter in the surveillance videos. She claims it were different from what later appeared on the news.
She said she was sent different still frames which weren’t as clear. When she later saw other pictures on the news, she said she called police to say she now knew her older daughter was involved.
“I think basically she was looking out for her little sister,” the mother said.
The mom said her 12-year-old wanted to quit school because of bullying.
“I just explained to her,” she said. “You’ve got to go to school for your education and, you know, I was in the process of trying to have her transferred.”
Now, the mom said she cannot even reach her older daughter, who she last knew was living in a duplex with broken windows in Baden. The mother’s 12-year-old daughter is still listed in the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) Missing Person Database. Ferguson police told FOX 2, they know she’s ok because officers have talked to the girl by phone about who she’s with.
The girl’s mother said the minor has not been to school since last week. She had found out by calling the school. She said she does not believe her daughter was enrolled in another school.
The mom said she’s still the one who should make the decisions for her 12-year-old daughter. She has this message for her older daughter.
“What you did, I understood you were trying to help her, but you did it the wrong way,” she said. “I’m not trying to press any charges or anything. I just want my child back home safe and sound.”
Mom’s best hope on reuniting with her daughter may end up being through the family services system.
A spokesperson from the Ferguson-Florissant school district said they could not give out information about a student. However, they did share some details below about the resources they offer.
For Family Resources:
- There’s a workshop called “Erasing the Stigma of Mental Health,” which will be held on Thursday. Families can attend the workshop, which will discuss mental health concerns.
- On Oct. 20, there will be a session to talk about bullying and the resources available.
- The district provides two 24-hour hotlines, which are called PSST World and Courage2Report for any student or parent who wants to report bullying behavior or dangerous circumstances.
- You will remain anonymous on both hotlines.
You can find more resources that the district offers on their website at https://www.fergflor.org/domain/51.