Authorities say a woman abandoned a missing teen in Clay County site with no intention of coming back.


Tiffany Mejia 40 years old, was charged with evidence tampering, interfering with child custody, and other drug charges.
Woman abandoned missing teen in Clay County site with no intention of returning.Photo byGainesville Police Department

GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA: Authorities say a lady is suspected of leaving a teen in Clay County and driving away without intending to pick them up. Tiffany Mejia, 40, was charged with tampering with evidence, interfering with child custody, and several drug crimes after telling law officials that she transported the missing youngster to the outside of an unknown residence, as stated by the Gainesville Police Department.

Officers said they first heard of a missing 13-year-old boy on Friday after he was last seen at 7 p.m. on Thursday. The Alachua County Sheriff's Office Aviation unit assisted with the hunt for the missing teenager during the weekend in the Gainesville region.

During a secondary search of the area where the boy was last seen on Thursday night, they checked video footage and it showed the teen outside of a closed store in agony.

According to police, Mejia's earlier comments did not match what was shown on the video, therefore she became a person of interest in the teen's disappearance. Authorities stated that on Sunday, the police department's SWAT squad searched the 40-year-old’s residence and gathered evidence that led them to suspect the missing boy was in one of two Clay County locations. The Clay County Sheriff's Office was contacted for help and confirmed that the boy had been found and was safe.

"The Gainesville Police Department would like to thank the community, the FBI, the Alachua County Sheriff's Office, the Clay County Sheriff's Office, and the many other people and organizations that cooperated over the holidays to bring this youngster home safe," GPD posted on Facebook. Tommy Stephens, 55, and Jamie Stephens, 43, were both charged with child negligence.

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