MIRAMAR (CBSMiami) – A Miramar teen who had been missing for nearly a week has been found safe.
Police said 17-year old Naketa Leiba was found hiding under a bunk bed at a friend’s apartment near the 8400 block of Sherman Circle.
“When she was found she was interviewed at length by both detectives and FBI agents and she basically said that she ran away,” said Miramar police spokeswoman Tania Rues. “She wasn’t coerced, she wasn’t at any time held against her will. On the contrary, the person she was with, her friend, was the one that convinced her to call her mom.”
The search for Leiba began last Wednesday afternoon. The teen was supposed to walk home from her bus stop in the 6800 block of SW 34th Street because her mother couldn’t pick her up, but she never made it.
Naketa’s father, Michael, said they were overjoyed when they found out that she was safe. When they were reunited, Michael Leiba said Naketa was withdrawn and didn’t say much. He said he can’t believe his daughter ran away from home.
“There’s no evidence, where are the phone records to show that she was corresponding with that friend. There’s no evidence to show that she was with that friend,” said Michael Leiba. “She was found in a home with no lights. An 18-year old kid, I don’t know how she pays her bills. So there’s no evidence that she ran away.”
Rues said based on the evidence in this case, police believe the girl did in fact run away.
“Based on the history, everything from a prior domestic dispute in the home, to her skipping classes, to messages that she herself posted on her Twitter account,” said Rues, “When you look at that, when you take into account that she was hiding under a bunk bed trying to evade us, she knew police were there, if she was being held against her will she could have run out, yelled or said something.”
Rues said police believe Naketa ran away because she was having problems with her parents whose divorced was recently finalized.
No charges will be filed against Leiba and taxpayers will foot the bill for the search.