On Thursday, a motorist in Kentucky alerted 911 after noticing a distressed girl in a vehicle on the the interstate,
A North Caroline teenager, who had been missing, was rescued by Kentucky police after she signaled for help using hand gestures that she learned on TikTok. On the video-sharing platform, the hand signal is known to represent violence at home, according to authorities. Last week on Tuesday, the parents of a 16-year-old from Asheville reported her missing as per the Laurel County Sheriff's Office in Kentucky. Then on Thursday, a motorist in Kentucky alerted 911 after noticing a distressed girl in a vehicle on the interstate, reports CNN.
The witness stayed behind the vehicle for seven miles and provided information to the police after noting the hand gesture made by the teen. "The complainant was behind the vehicle and noticed a female passenger in the vehicle making hand gestures that are known on the social media platform 'Tik Tok' to represent violence at home -- I need help -- domestic violence," read the statement that the Laurel County Sheriff's Office posted on Friday. According to the Canadian Women's Foundation, the hand gesture is a one-handed sign that someone can use when they are in distress. For this, one needs to hold their hands up with their palm facing out, then tuck their thumb into their hand before closing their fingers to trap the thumb.
A missing teen was rescued by police after she signaled for help by using a hand gesture known on TikTok to represent violence at home, according to police. The person followed the car for 7 miles called 911 relayed info to police. https://t.co/x6l1zXpcoD pic.twitter.com/a0R5BKyBLg— Lydia Cornell (@LydiaCornell) November 7, 2021
While being interviewed, the teen told the police that she learned the hand signal on TikTok according to CNN affiliate WYMT. Thankfully, authorities were able to pull the car over and rescue the young girl. It was revealed that the suspect had originally taken the teen to his relatives' place in Ohio from North Carolina. But left the state when his relatives found out that the girl was a minor and had been reported missing according to police. While traveling on Thursday, the girl attempted to alert passerbys and one finally understood her distressing situation.
"We don't know how long coming down the interstate from Ohio that she had been doing this to other motorists hoping that they would notice that she was in distress, but finally someone did recognize," said Laurel County Sheriff's Deputy Gilbert Acciardo. The suspect was arrested on Thursday. He was charged with unlawful imprisonment and possession of a matter of sex performance by a minor (over 12 but under 18).
Just a few days ago, a four-year-old girl was rescued after she went missing for 18 days. Last month, on October 16, Cleo Smith went missing while camping with her family at the Blowholes Shacks campsite in Western Australia, we reported. When her family woke up around 6 a.m. their little girl was nowhere to be found and the tent was unzipped higher than the toddler. For days, they had no information about her whereabouts as authorities continues searching for the little girl. Then earlier this month, she was found locked inside a home in Carnarvon, a coastal town in Western Australia. The house was situated about 62 miles from the campsite where she went missing.
It was Detective Senior Sergeant Cameron Blaine who found Cleo in the house, a moment that is "without a doubt" the best moment in his entire career. "It was absolutely fantastic, to see her sitting there in the way that she was, it was just incredible. I asked her what her name was. One of the guys in front of me jumped in and picked her up. It certainly looked like Cleo, I wanted to be absolutely sure it was her," said Blaine. A 36-year-old local resident has been taken into custody in connection with the child's disappearance. Maybe if the toddler knew the hand signal, she could have used it had the opportunity arrived.
Cover image source: YouTube Screenshot | Canadian Women's Foundation