ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. Eleven-year-old Jessica Smith and her mother, Kimberly were located in their vehicle, nine miles south of Tres Piedras, New Mexico, an area on the edge of Carson National Forest, according to a release from Fort Worth police 550 miles from home.
It is with great joy and satisfaction to announce that the nationwide search that began on Tuesday, February 7,2012, has been canceled, the police statement said.
The deputies spotted that car about nine miles south of U.S. 64 and U.S. 285 near the Carson National Forest, said KOAT reporter Liz McKernan in Taos, New Mexico. We are told that they were a little bit lethargic, but that Jessica herself was in very good spirits, and obviously very happy to be found.
Authorities said a deputy spotted Jessica and her mother along the remote highway about 30 feet off the pavement. They appeared to be very exhausted and hungry. Both were transported to a Taos hospital to be checked out.
According to police, Jessica did not appear to physically injured, but Kimberly Smith was described as being out of it.
The ambulance pulled up and we were able to get video of mom getting admitted into the emergency room, McKernan said.
They are okay confirmed Caitlin Fields, the victim's sister. Thanks to everyone for all the support.
Tom Pappas, the attorney for Jessica's father Phillip Smith, released this statement Sunday evening: Phillip wants to thank everyone for all the prayers and efforts that they made for his daughter's safe return.
Kimberly Smith will be extradited to Fort Worth on two felony warrants, aggravated assault and endangering a child. The warrants were issued after the investigation showed acts of violence took place, police said.
Neighbors of the Smith family were overjoyed to learn that Jessica and her mom were both safe.
I would tell her that I was praying for her, and I was hoping she'd come back, and she did, said Jessica's friend Katy Chitwood.
Tammy Vu and Caitlyn Stanley tied yellow ribbons on and around the Smith home, which also has a sign that reads: God bless Jessica.
We thank everyone involved with the successful mission with this child abduction investigation as well as the apprehension of Kimberly Smith, the police statement said. If not for the actions of the school officials, witnesses, reporting parties, along with the coordinated efforts of our law enforcement partners combined with the public and our media partners, this unfortunate sensitive and complicated investigation would not have ended with such a positive outcome.