SAN FERNANDO, Calif. - Police said a 14-year-old girl who disappeared, presumably while on her way to a nearby convenience store, was found safe.
Destiny Isabella Mercado was found in San Gabriel Sunday night and that she was cooperating with investigators. No foul play is suspected, San Gabriel police Lt. Irwin Rosenberg said.
EARLIER IN THE INVESTIGATION
The teen texted her mother at 1:10 p.m. Saturday for permission to go to the 7-Eleven store at Hubbard Street and Borden Avenue. It's believed Destiny was at home in the 1900 block of Chivers Street when she sent the message, according to San Fernando police Lt. Irwin Rosenberg.
It was not known whether she was on foot when she sent the text, but she apparently did not make it to the store.
Her phone was found at 1:40 p.m. in the area of Hubbard and Glenoaks Boulevard by someone who claimed it was thrown from the right rear passenger seat of a moving vehicle, Rosenberg said.
A witness told police the vehicle was a light gray or silver Mazda,
It was unknown whether Mercado ran away, but the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the phone raises suspicion about the disappearance, he said.
Destiny’s mom spoke to FOX 11 about her daughter’s disappearance.
"With the information of the man who found the phone, to me it seems very odd he would see the phone on the street or he would see somebody throwing the phone and then going out and getting the phone. We’re not sure if he could be related or not," Angelica Pelayo stated.
She says her daughter has never ran away before but it’s still a possibility now.
"If my daughter ran away she won’t have texted me."
Pelayo says last week Destiney was forced to break up with her boyfriend; but sheriff's deputies did not find her at his Palmdale house or any other addresses in Palmdale where she has friends, Rosenberg said.
The San Fernando community is coming together to help locate her. A mass search was conducted Sunday evening.
"The Police Department has contacted area hospitals and conducted an area search but she has not been located," he said. "A mass notification has been issued to San Fernando residents, businesses and surrounding area."
Anyone with information was asked to call San Fernando police at 818- 898-1267.
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