AMBER Alert Update: Detectives reveal key clue that cracked 10-day missing teen case

Posted at 6:52 PM, Oct 31, 2019

LOUISA COUNTY, Va. -- More than 400 tips poured in across multiple states during the 10-day search for missing 14-year-old Isabel Hicks and her alleged abductor Bruce Lynch, according to investigators.

Virginia State Police canceled the AMBER Alert issued for the teenager late Wednesday night after a citizen spotted the suspect's vehicle in Caroline County.

Neither the teenage girl, nor the 33-year-old man were injured during the traffic stop on Page Road in Ladysmith.

Authorities held the first press conference at the Louisa Sheriff's Office on Thursday since the pair were found.

"It's a great day," Louisa Sheriff's Major Donnie Lowe said. "We started this with a missing persons report and watched this transform into one of the most successful examples of how the system works."

An AMBER Alert was issued Friday, Oct. 25, after police said they learned Lynch had a gun and had "recent suicidal ideations."

"It’s not often enough that law enforcement gets to stand at a press conference and announce the successful recovery of a young person who’s been missing for an extended period of time," said Neil Mathison, the assistant special agent in charge of the Richmond FBI Office. "It was an observant set of eyes from the community that made that one call that we needed to bring Isabel home to her family."

Lynch was described as the former boyfriend of the teen's mother.

It was believed Hicks left willingly with the older man.

Maj. Lowe read a prepared statement on behalf of Hicks' family.

"We just want to say thank you to any and all law enforcement, anyone that prayed, came by, made dinner, donated money or even drove around looking for Isabel. She’s at home, she’s tired and overwhelmed by everything. We truly appreciate everything that’s been done to reunite her with our family at the hardest times of our lives," he read.

Authorities won't say why they believe the teen left with Lynch. They stated details were limited because of their criminal investigation that included a juvenile.

Lynch is expected to go before a judge to be arraigned on a felony abduction charge in Louisa.

Bruce Lynch

Bruce Lynch

Suspect and teen are spotted on Monday

The pair was spotted together late Monday night when they approached the home of the suspect's mother in Montpelier and knocked on the door.

The man and girl ran into the woods when Lisa Harper answered and told them they were wanted.

Earlier Wednesday, law enforcement indicated they were changing their search tactics.

“We have been receiving multiple calls about additional places of interest and our resources will be redeployed today to thoroughly investigate each of those," Louisa County Sheriff’s Office Det. Chuck Love said Wednesday afternoon.

This is a developing story. Witnesses can send news tips, photos, and video here.



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