Left for dead in the woods. Her mom may be on the run in Richmond.

Aunt: 'We want to know why, and you need to be held accountable for your actions'
Posted at 6:39 PM, May 31, 2023

RICHMOND, Va -- Authorities are searching for a Richmond mother who allegedly abandoned her special needs daughter in the woods of Michigan, and the victim's aunt is now fighting to bring her back to Virginia.

The morning of April 20, Michigan State Police said Angela Crute, her daughter Takai Crute, and an unknown woman got off a bus together, walked behind a community college, and into a land preserve.

Police said a maintenance worker asked them what they were doing, and Angela responded that they were taking Takai for a walk.

The worker grew suspicious and called the police. Officers responded and searched the area but did not find the women.

Takai Crute story
Takai Crute

After twelve hours had passed, police said a hiker eventually found Takai later that evening.

Takai, 22, is non-verbal and has special needs. According to Takai's aunt, Kesha Crute, she can walk with a limp but cannot communicate with others.

“So, for her to have been left somewhere like that? No words," Kesha said. “In essence, in my mind, she was left for dead basically. She couldn't fend for herself if an animal or something, I thank God that he put the right people in her path.”

Takai Crute story
Kesha Crute

Though police said Takai was abandoned in April, Kesha said she didn't find out about it until late May when she came across news articles with pictures of Takai labeled as a "living Jane Doe." When Takai was initially located, police needed help identifying her.

Kesha estimates that Takai and her mother were in Michigan for about seven months before the incident happened. She said she has no clue why Angela went to Michigan in the first place.

State Police said they're pursuing an arrest warrant for Angela and intend to charge her with abuse of a vulnerable adult.

Angela is originally from the Richmond area, and police believe that has fled to Richmond.

Angela Crute
Angela Crute

Kesha said there are many unanswered questions about why Angela would leave her daughter out in the woods alone.

“We want to know why, and you need to be held accountable for your actions," Kesha said. “It's a lot of ifs, but if you were tired of taking care of her, you have family, she had family. You could have contacted us. We would have taken her. That's what we're prepared to do now. It didn't have to come to this at all."

Kesha, who has started the hashtag #BringTakaiHome, said she is working with social services in Michigan to obtain custody and get the 22-year-old to Richmond.

"She's special needs, but [has] a big heart," Kesha said

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