CAMAS, Wash. – A Camas teen missing for more than two weeks has been found safe, a family spokeswoman told KGW Wednesday.
Angelic 'Anji' Dean was last seen on June 23rd. She was found around 4 p.m. on Wednesday, July 9 at the Clackamas Town Center.
"It is clear that the local and national news coverage as well as the wide spread sharing of this family's story via social media such as Facebook and Twitter was integral in leading us to her safe return," said Sgt. Kevin Allais of the Clark County sheriff's office.
Anji's mother's reaction was one of relief, with words of caution.
"This can happen to anybody," said Lynda Jorgensen. "There are a lot of people out there preying on young girls."
Family members had expressed fears early in the search that Anji may have somehow been pulled into sex trafficking. After she was found, Sgt. Allais said they continue to investigate that detail.
"This is an active investigation that includes the crime of human trafficking," he said.
Earlier on Wednesday, a Milwaukie woman told KGW she had spent several days with Anji and was trying to help her.
"She said she was in a bad situation and needed to get out," Jennifer told KGW. She wanted her last name kept anonymous.
Jennifer said the teen initially introduced herself as Anji but said she wanted to be called "Daisy." She added that Anji told her people were probably looking for her and she was being forced into things she didn't want to do.
The teen left before she could do anything to help her, Jennifer said.
In the more than two weeks that she was missing, police asked for tips, her family posted hundreds of missing person flyers, and her mother helped spread the word nationally with a TV interview on CNN’s Nancy Grace show.
All those extra efforts helped. Detective Scott Krigis told KGW that the Clark County Sheriff's Office received more than 100 new tips, including some that they tracked on Wednesday.
Anji vanished without her prescription glasses, wallet or extra clothing. A neighbor reported seeing her get out of an older, blue Volvo that was filled with people on the day she went missing. The car pulled up to Anji's home, near 192nd Avenue in Camas, and the driver was a black man, about 25 to 35 years old, with a goatee.
Police have not yet said whether that group of people or the driver had anything to do with Anji's disappearance.
But whatever the circumstances, her family is just happy to have her home.
"I'm glad it's over," Jorgensen said.