UNDATED: Amber Alerts have been issued in Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma for 10-year-old Hailey Owens, who was pulled into a truck in Springfield, Mo., by a man who has been taken into custody on kidnapping charges, authorities say. (AP/KANSAS BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION)
Authorities in Missouri say they have a suspect in custody in the abduction of a 10-year-old girl in the southwest part of the state, but the girl remains missing.
Springfield police released a statement just before midnight Wednesday saying dozens of officers were still searching for Hailey Owens, but that a man had been taken into custody on kidnapping charges.
The suspect’s name hasn’t been released. Police said he was found inside a vehicle at a local home.
A command post was set up in Springfield and about 30 to 40 officers have “begun an extensive search that will continue throughout the night, or until she is found,” the Springfield News-Leader reported, citing a police news release.
Witnesses told investigators a man in a gold-colored 2008 Ford Ranger drove down the street several times before approaching Hailey and pulling her into his truck around 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Amber Alerts were issued in Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma.
Hailey is 5-foot-2, about 90 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. She was wearing jean shorts and purple sandals.
Hailey’s mother, Stacey Owens, told the Springfield News-Leader that the fourth-grader was returning home from visiting a friend when she was abducted a couple of blocks from her home.
The girl’s aunt, Erin Petersen, said she wanted to do anything she could to help find her niece.
“She’s a very lively, bubbly, sweet little girl. She’s spontaneous, very innocent,” she told the newspaper. “I’m in shock right now. I feel like I need to be productive to find my niece.”
“We will find her,” she said.