CONWAY — As law enforcement officials try to get a firm understanding of how Abigail Hernandez disappeared, where she was for nine months and how she returned, social media has been abuzz with theories and negative comments about the teen.
In response, one web page thread on the subject has been shut down entirely and the volunteers who have been running the BringAbbyHome web page and Facebook page have issued an appeal asking for patience.
A volunteer, Amanda Smith, said some of the negative posters on the Abigail pages, which were designed to help bring the 15-year-old Hernandez home, have gone too far with their theories.
“Many people have been requesting specific answers and details as to exactly what happened to Abby,” Smith said when asked for comment by the Union Leader. “While we appreciate the desire for answers, this is still very much an ongoing law enforcement investigation and no details can be released that could jeopardize the integrity of their work.”
“During the last nine months we have fully supported and taken direction from law enforcement on ways to proceed that were in the best interest of Abby's safety and return to her family. Abby being reunited with her family on Sunday is a testament to us that this process has worked and continue to believe they are acting in Abby's best interests.”
“As we receive more information from them, we will share it as soon as we can,” she said.
At the websleuths.com board, a statement was posted after some of the comments about Hernandez went too far, according to the board’s administrators.
A participant in the board posted “(Law enforcement) is not helping matters at all in the way they have and still are handling this case. A lot of parents will want reassurance that if she ran away, their kids will receive the same level of efforts as this case received. They want to know if a predator is involved, if it is a local, if it was an online contact, someone she knew, or a random.”
That was followed a few posts later by this post from an administrator.
“Enough! This debate is going around in circles. The thread will be closed until further notice.”
Jane Young of the Attorney General’s Office said investigators share the same concerns and questions that those posting have.
“We have the same questions,” she said.
Hernandez disappeared on Oct. 9. She was reunited with her family on Sunday night, investigators said. Few details of the case have been released.