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December 29. 2013 9:29PM

Investigators considering possibility Abigail Hernandez ran away

CONWAY — Law enforcement investigators had little reaction to statements last week by the father of Abigail Hernandez indicating that the missing 15-year-old ran away from home.

In a Christmas letter to Abigail last week, Ruben Hernandez included this statement to his daughter: "Abby I am assuming that you did run away," he wrote.

Abigail was last seen walking home from Kennett High School on Oct. 9.

FBI Agent Kieran Ramsey, one of the lead investigators in the missing person case, acknowledged that the investigation is considering the possibility that Abigail ran away, among several other possibilities.

"We aren't going to characterize his plea (to Abigail) in his letter one way or the other," Ramsey said.

Law enforcement officials have expressed "grave" concerns about Abigail's whereabouts, saying she could be somewhere held against her will.

Asked to elaborate on his statement, Ruben Hernandez said he based his judgment on a letter that his daughter mailed to her mother after she disappeared.

The letter was written Oct. 22, postmarked Oct. 23 and received by Abby's mother Nov. 6, according to Senior Associate Attorney General Jane E. Young. Young would not say from where the letter had been postmarked, and authorities would not reveal its contents.

"I don't know if Abby ran away or not," Ruben Hernandez said. "As I stated in my first letter to her: 'We don't know if you ran away, but if you did … .'"

"Since a letter surfaced on Nov. 6, I'm just going to assume that she did (run away)," he said. "I hope this clarifies what I meant."

dseufert@newstote.com



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