Volunteer groups search for missing Lamar County girls - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Volunteer groups search for missing Lamar County girls

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There's been a lot of attention on social media about two girls missing in Lamar county.

Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel says he has no reason to believe they are in immediate danger.

McKayla (14) and Katelin Slade (17) were last seen on April 17.

Rigel says the attorney general's office, FBI, the Center for Search and Investigations and the Center for Missing and Exploited Children are helping search for the two.

He says there's no reason to believe that any foul play has happened, or that McKayla and Katelin are being held against their wills.

"We volunteer to help find missing children ages 10-16," says Laura Carlisle.

Carlisle is a private investigator with the Center for Search and Investigations. For two and a half weeks she and her team have been looking for McKayla and Katelin.

"We do know that they left on their own and there is an assumption that they are with a person of interest," says Carlisle.

That person of interest cannot be named at this time.

"He is an older person. He is over 21," says Carlisle.

According to Rigel, no criminal charges have been filed in the case.

Even though the girls left willingly, one could face serious penalties for harboring a minor such as jail time and thousands of dollars in fines.

But these are not the only faces plastered on posters. According to the FBI, juveniles under the age of 18 account for almost 37 percent of missing person reports.

"What's happening in our country today is kids are running away. Whether it's a boy or a girl, predators are after them once they get on the streets."

If you have any information on the whereabouts of McKayla and Katelin, call the Lamar County Sheriff's Department at 601-794-8610.

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