Missing Palm Coast teen found unharmed
UPDATE: 14-year-old Taina Velazquez found in Ormond Beach
PALM COAST, Fla. – Deputies say there will be no charges filed after a 14-year-old girl who had been missing for nearly 14 hours overnight was found safe.
A missing child alert was issued for Taina Velazquez after she didn’t arrive home from school yesterday. Now the teenager is back at home and safe with her family.
Velasquez was last seen at Indian Trails Middle School in Palm Coast, but was found 25 miles away in Ormond Beach.
Martha Ortega, the teenager’s aunt, expressed the family’s distress. “Everybody's been looking for her since 1:00 a.m. everybody was devastated,” said Ortega. “We didn't know if we were going to hear that they found her dead.”
Police said Velazquez sent text messages from school, saying she didn't want to ride the bus home. She was seen getting into a car with a man only known as "Mario" Thursday afternoon.
After she was found, Velasquez was interviewed by investigators. Her family was seen outside the Flagler County Sheriff's Office Friday about 6:45 a.m.
Ortega said although she is happy her niece was found, but very disappointed in the justice system.
"How can our kids go out there and because our kids say one thing to a person that's an adult- and my niece is gone for 14 hours before she's found, and this man is free? He's walking free? There's no justice. Where's the justice?" Ortega asked.
Ortega said she is appreciative of all the people who volunteered to help find Velasquez. She says more than 1,200 people reached out and said they were willing to help with the search.
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