A 12-year-old Florida girl steals her father’s car and takes her 14-year-old friend on a 400-mile drive to Alabama to meet a predator they’ve been talking to online, sparking a massive federal search.
- Jade Gregory and Pal Chloe Larson, ages 12 and 14, have covered over 400 miles
- The couple, both now safe, had been messaging an unknown person online
- The feds are currently examining the possibility of child grooming by sex traffickers
Having stolen her father’s car for five hours, a pre-teen and her boyfriend journey across the state to meet an online scammer – which led to a full-blown federal search and now an FBI investigation.
Jade Gregory and pal Chloe Larson, ages 12 and 14, made it over 400 miles from Gainesville, Florida, to Alabama before authorities found her safely.
The duo, who were driving in Gregory’s parents’ Ford Taurus, had apparently run into an unknown person online, whom they intended to meet in Louisiana.
Their sudden disappearance last week sparked a massive federal search while causing uproar across much of the southern United States.
The husband, now safe, had been missing for less than a quarter of a day. The Fed revealed on Wednesday that the pair left their home voluntarily and traveled alone.
They are examining the possibility of children being groomed by sex traffickers.
Jade Gregory, 12, made it more than 650 miles from Gainesville, Fla., to Alabama before authorities found him safely on Wednesday.
14-year-old Chloe Larson snapped just before she drove her father’s Ford Taurus towards Luciana. Apparently, the duo was chatting with an unknown person online
“We have deactivated the active Missing Children Alert,” the Union County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a statement Thursday morning, shortly after the girls were found.
“Gaddy Gregory and Khloe Larsen have been placed safely in Bayou La Battery, Alabama,” the statement posted on the department’s social media read.
Many thanks to the multiple agencies involved throughout Florida, Alabama and Louisiana to include the FBI and FDLE (Florida Division of Law Enforcement).
“Thank you for all the advice and information you’ve received.”
It was not immediately clear where the children were found or by whom. Police did not confirm on Monday whether classified information from abroad led to the discovery.
The couple is now safe and back with their families. An amber youth alert was issued on Wednesday at approximately 11:50 a.m., which resolved by 4 p.m.
They were last seen around Main Street and County Route 237 in Lake Butler, sometime after Gregory jumped behind the wheel of her father’s Wednesday pickup. Soon after, she pounced on her older friend’s house to take her on the trip.
The police indicated that both children were correspondents with an unknown man or party.
The couple is now safe and back with their families. An amber youth alert was issued Wednesday at approximately 11:50 a.m., resolved by 4 p.m.
They were last seen at Main Street and County Road 237 in Lake Butler (shown here) sometime after Gregory jumped behind the wheel of her little dad on Wednesday. Soon after, she pounced on her older friend’s house to take her on the trip
Since its cancellation, the missing child alert has sent members of several states into a frenzy, as images of the babies with fresh faces flash across millions of billboards and American television screens.
Since its cancellation, the Missing Child Alert has sent members from several states into a frenzy, as new-faced images of the children have appeared across millions of billboards and television screens.
When the couple was caught, they had already traversed nearly 400 miles of land and most of northern Florida, and were only a few dozen miles from crossing Alabama into Mississippi.
At that point, the girls were on their way home on their journey toward Louisiana. Investigators did not reveal which part of the Bayou State the two were traveling to.
The FBI is now investigating someone they believe the two girls were planning to meet. The bureau did not immediately respond to DailyMail.com’s request for comment.