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Missing South Florida teen returns home after meeting up with man she met online

A missing South Florida teen who was located in another state was returned home to her family Monday night.

NORTH MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Nearly two days after she first went missing, 15-year-old Jeimy Henrriquez was found by North Miami Beach police on Sunday after leaving her home with someone she met online.

She was brought back to her family by two detectives on Monday night.

Detectives say she met the man on Saturday through a video game called “Fire Max.”

During a news conference Monday morning, North Miami Beach Police Chief Richard Rand said two detectives who are mothers to young girls themselves immediately jumped on the case and located Henrriquez within 48 hours.

He said the man who she left home with was more than 10 years older than her.

“I’m very content because now my daughter is going to return,” Henrriquez’s mother Ana Quintanilla told Local 10 News’ Bridgette Matter on Monday afternoon in Spanish.

According to the police chief, the teen was located in another state and was taken into the custody of the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Two detectives from North Miami Beach traveled to the state where the girl was found and brought her back home Monday night.

“This is a stark reminder during this holiday season that we have to be mindful of what our children are doing on the internet,” Rand said.

REPLAY: Full news conference on missing teen:

Rand said the suspect, whose identity has not been released, traveled to South Florida to pick up the teen and took her to another state.

Before she was found, Henrriquez’s mother told Local 10 News that her daughter called her several times crying.

“She said, ‘Don’t tell police,’ and ‘This is no one’s fault,’” Quintanilla said. “She regrets leaving.”

The teen even called her mother during her interview with Local 10 News, but quickly hung up.

Police pinged Henrriquez’s cellphone and located it in North Carolina, but Rand did not confirm whether she was found in that state or another state.

According to the police chief, there were discrepancies regarding the teen’s movements, and he did not want to jeopardize the FBI’s investigation by confirming which state the teen was found in.

Henrriquez’s mother said her daughter also called her on Saturday, saying she was hungry, cold and far away.

On Sunday, her mother said she was in fear for her daughter’s safety.

“I worry she could be in danger,” Quintanilla said.

Rand confirmed that the teen was hungry and cold when she was found by authorities and said they immediately addressed those issues and made sure she had a safe place to stay until she could be reunited with her family.

He said subpoenas have been issued for the game in which she was communicating with the suspect, as well as other social media sites.

The search for the suspect continues.

“He didn’t think about the trouble he was going to be in,” Quintanilla said.” I hope the person comes forward that took her.”


About the Authors:

Trent Kelly is an award-winning multimedia journalist who joined the Local 10 News team in June 2018. Trent is no stranger to Florida. Born in Tampa, he attended the University of Florida in Gainesville, where he graduated with honors from the UF College of Journalism and Communications.

Bridgette Matter joined the Local 10 News team as a reporter in July 2021. Before moving to South Florida, she began her career in South Bend, Indiana and spent six years in Jacksonville as a reporter and weekend anchor.