A 14-year-old girl who went missing from Arizona shortly before her 15th birthday walked into a Montana police station, law enforcement announced Wednesday.
Now-18-year-old Alicia Navarro walked into the small town police department, roughly 40 miles from the Canadian border, and identified herself as a teenager who went missing in September 2019, according to the BBC. She asked to be removed from the missing children’s list.
Navarro reportedly ran away in 2019, leaving only a note for her parents. “I ran away. I will be back. I swear. I’m sorry,” the note read, KTAR News reported. The teenager’s mother, Jessica Nunez, believes that her daughter was groomed and taken away from their home by someone she met online.
.@TaylorTasler has more on Alicia Navarro.
— KTAR News 92.3 (@KTAR923) July 26, 2023
“For everyone who has missing loved ones, I want you to use this case as an example,” Nunez said in a video shared on Facebook. “Miracles do exist. Never lose hope and always fight.” (RELATED: Doctor Mysteriously Disappears After Proposing To Fiancee, Found Dead Days Later)
“I do believe that she was lured thinking that she was going to have some kind of adventure, party or maybe love,” her mother said, the BBC noted. Navarro was previously diagnosed as high-functioning on the autism spectrum, and played a lot of video games.
It’s unclear how Navarro came to be in the remote Montana town, and the case is still under investigation. She was reunited with her mother shortly after coming forward, which was “emotionally overwhelming.” Navarro was “very apologetic as to what she has put her mother through.”