When Karol Sanchez, a 16-year-old girl from the Bronx, went missing and was consequently believed to have been kidnapped, an Amber Alert was raised, and a massive search was initiated on late Monday night and well into Tuesday.
However, after some time, the teenager came back and confessed to the police that her absence was planned, so she could spend time with her boyfriend, who is 23 years old and already with a criminal past, as the young man reportedly is a Crips gangbanger and has been accused of committing murder.
The whole ordeal began when Sanchez and her mother, Carmen, were walking casually along Eagle Avenue in Melrose, and a beige sedan stopped next to them.
Then, two men stepped out of the vehicle and brought Karol into the auto in what appeared to be a violent manner, where two more men were waiting.
Meanwhile, Carmen was fighting to save her daughter but was forced to the ground as the car drove away in the direction of East 156th Street.
Following what happened, the police were quickly alerted, an Amber Alert was issued 12 hours later, and soon officers were actively searching for the girl until on Tuesday an anonymous man contacted the family and claimed that they had gotten the wrong girl.
Shortly after the call, on Tuesday afternoon, Karol was found at the same place where she was abducted the night before.
Akash Singh, a 29-year-old construction worker in the area, revealed: “We were looking at the [missing poster] picture saying, ‘I hope she’s OK,’ and she walked right up. She was trembling while she was walking. She just looked really scared. She put her hands on her knees, and she started talking to the cops. They jumped out of the car and put her in.”
Once Sanchez reappeared, she was immediately taken to the 40th Precinct station house and confessed to the policemen that the whole kidnapping was staged so she could meet with her boyfriend.
Even though it is unlikely for Karol to be charged with breaking the law, the four men who took her are still wanted by the police.
According to law enforcement sources, the teen’s mother was thinking about moving back to her native Honduras. Some believe that this decision may have played a part in what happened.
An NYPD source explained: “Her mother wanted to move them back to Honduras, but she [Karol] was adamantly against it.”
The apparent kidnapping had gone viral in a significant way, thanks to the video that captured the entire scene.
However, some have made comparisons to what Empire actor Jussie Smollett was accused of doing earlier this year. The two incidents hurt real victims, a few commenters have argued.
A concerned observer stated: “It’s hard for me to believe this when all the other woman who gets kidnapped get zero coverage from the news, funny how this “fake” kidnapping gets more attention than actual cases. The media be pushing an agenda.”
A more understanding voice pointed out: “WTF, OK, I’m hearing different stories because I heard she staged it because she didn’t want her family to move back to Honduras, which more understandable seeing the climate in Honduras.”
One critic added: “She just made it harder for the media to help black women in situations like this…. please continue praying for her. 🙏🏾”
The family is said to be grateful for social media and the authorities, but they have chosen to remain silent for now.