Elvia Flores found safe in Gridley; charges 'a possibility' against Live Oak teen

8:12 PM, Apr 14, 2010   |    comments
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SUTTER COUNTY, CA - Charges could be filed against two Live Oak teenagers whose disappearance Monday sparked an Amber Alert and an area-wide two-day search, according to the Sutter County Sheriff's Department.

Elvia Flores was found safe in Gridley Wednesday afternoon, Sutter County Sheriff's Sgt. Glen Mercer said.

Flores, 14, was spotted by a Gridley police officer as she walked down an alley on Oak Street in Gridley around 2 p.m. Wednesday.

Mercer said Flores was in good physical condition and was "non-emotional" as she was interviewed about her disappearance by Sutter County Sheriff's investigators.

Flores claimed she didn't know her family and law enforcement were looking for her and only left Live Oak High School Monday morning to accompany a 15-year-old friend, Mercer said.

At a news conference Wednesday morning before Flores was found, Lt. James Casner with the Sutter County Sheriff's Department said officers had enough information to determine Flores was not abducted, but left school voluntarily with her boyfriend. An Amber Alert for the teen was also cancelled Wednesday morning.

Casner said Flores "actually walked away from the high school" and had sent a text message to a boyfriend to pick her up. He said witnesses saw Flores get into a car north of the high school that morning.

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Initially, the Sutter County Sheriff's Office believed Flores and a 15-year-old friend were abducted from Live Oak High School by four to five Hispanic males driving a brown four-door sedan with an unknown license plate number.

Later that day, a CHP officer in neighboring Glenn County spotted the 15-year-old girl. She was crying in a field behind a USA gas station in Orland, more than 60 miles away from the high school. According to an older sister, the teen claimed she was kidnapped along with Flores, put in a car, and then blacked out when something was put over her face.

Casner said the 15-year-old claimed someone put her in a car against her will, that she blacked out and was later dropped off in Orland.

As for Flores, Casner said the 14-year-old walked away from the high school after being dropped off by her mother on Monday, and witnesses saw her get into a car and take off. Based on text messages that officers retrieved, Casner said officers believed Flores was with her boyfriend.

Mercer said there was a possibility charges could be filed against both girls once investigators can determine exactly what happened. 

According to Flores' mother Monica Hernandez, Monday was supposed to be her daughter's last day at Live Oak High School because the family was moving to Yuba City. Hernandez said they wanted to get away from the problems her daughter was having with other students at Live Oak High.

Hernandez said Tuesday she believed her daughter had been abducted by friends of a suspected gang member. According to family and friends, Flores and another girl got into a fight two weeks ago, and Hernandez believed her daughter was kidnapped in retaliation.

When officers disclosed the information that Flores took off with a boyfriend, her family said she didn't have a boyfriend, according to Casner.


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