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Boyfriend says woman was 'kidnapped' after stopping to help toddler on highway

Boyfriend says woman was 'kidnapped' after stopping to help toddler on highway

Carlethia Nichole Russell disappeared for 48 hours after telling police about the child

The boyfriend of an Alabama woman has claimed she was kidnapped after she stopped her car to check on a toddler wandering the highway.

Carlethia 'Carlee' Nichole Russell, 25, called 911 on Thursday evening (13 July) to tell police she had spotted a child on the side of Interstate 459 South. She got out of her car to check on them and called a family member during the events, but although the phone line remained open, the family member lost contact with Russell.

Police arrived at the scene and found Russell's car along with some of her belongings, including her phone, but there was no sign of her or the toddler.

Russell called police to report the toddler on the highway.
Hoover Police Department

She remained missing throughout Friday (14 July), but on 10:45pm on Saturday night (15 July) the Hoover 911 center received a call to say Russell had returned home on foot.

No further details have been provided by police on Russell's whereabouts, but her boyfriend, Thomar Latrell Simmons, has claimed she was kidnapped.

In a post on Facebook, Simmons thanked those who had joined in the search efforts to find Russell and who had prayed for her safe return, adding: "I have been going nonstop since I received the call that she was missing on Thursday night. I know she would’ve done the same for me, so I wasn’t going to give up until I saw her face again!"

Simmons didn't go into detail about what Russell had been through after she disappeared from the highway, but he claimed she had been 'literally fighting for her life for 48 hours'.

"Until she’s physically [and] mentally stable again she is not able to give any updates or whereabouts on her kidnapper at this very moment," he added.

Simmons thanked those who had taken part in the search.
Facebook/Thomar Latrell Simmons

Police and fire department officers responded to the scene after being told Simmons had returned home, after which she was transported to a local hospital.

She was treated there before being released.

Police have confirmed they have taken an 'initial statement' from Russell, the details of which are 'part of the ongoing investigation which is expected to continue over the next few days'.

Hoover Police Chief Nicholas Derzis told CNN affiliate WBRC the police department is 'very happy' with Russell's safe return, saying: "We wanted her to come home safe and sound - and we’ll hope that’s what happened here. And I couldn’t be more excited, and I hope the community feels the same way."

“The first thing is to give Carlee and family a little time to get themselves back together," Derzis continued.

“I know it’s been a tough experience for them. When we think it’s time to sit down and have a conversation with Carlee and try to get some facts, we’ll do that.”

UNILAD has contacted Hoover police department for comment.

Featured Image Credit: Hoover Police Department / Thomar Latrell Simmons/Facebook

Topics: US News