DALLAS — A Dallas teen who was found in the backyard of a Denton home more than a week after she vanished told police fear spurred by discipline from a teacher led her to run away.
Police reported 18-year-old Alejandra Gonzales missing Monday. The announcement came five days after she was last seen at Sunset High School.
According to a statement released by Dallas police Friday, Gonzales told investigators she walked away from school after a teacher "scolded her" for using a computer without the consent of a teacher. The teen said her teacher asked her to apologize to other staff members after she was found using the computer without supervision.
Gonzales said she became fearful of further punishment and left the school's campus during the afternoon hours on April 23. She told police she traveled on foot over the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge and continued to walk along railroad tracks through the night.
During the day, the teen slept to avoid being seen by people.
"She said that she encountered very few people while she traveled, and said that she had not had anything to eat or drink during her absence," read the police statement.
Thursday, a resident in the 800 block of Orchid Lane in Denton called police after spotting someone standing in the backyard of a home. The individual was later identified as Gonzales, who was wearing the same clothes she had on the day she disappeared. Police said other than needing sleep and food, the teen was OK.
Authorities interviewed the teen, who was later reunited with her mother. Police said caseworkers with Crisis Intervention will talk with family, Metrocare and the staff at Sunset High School to ensure the teen has proper supervision.