Missing Tuscaloosa teen found safe, reunited with family
By Ben Culpepper
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- A Tuscaloosa teen who went missing from her home April 27 has been found safe and returned to her family, ABC 33/40 has learned.Jovana Hill, 13, was located recently after going missing for more than a month. Tuscaloosa County Sheriff's Office spokesman Lt. Andy Norris confirmed that Hill was back home with her family and unharmed.A relative speaking on behalf of the Hill family released a statement, saying, "This past month has been the hardest 30 days of our lives, and we are so pleased to have our baby back home." The family expressed their gratitude for the efforts by law enforcement and support from relatives and friends."We cannot express how much we appreciate the support of friends, family, and concerned citizens," a family spokesperson said in the release.According to Sheriff Ron Abernathy, the sheriff's office was informed Friday afternoon by police in Houston, Tex. that Hill and her mother were on a flight from Mexico and had landed at the Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport, where they would later take a connecting flight to Birmingham. Deputies and US Marshals met them at the airport and transported them back to Tuscaloosa, where the teen was interviewed and "debriefed." Jovana was later released back into the custody of her mother. Abernathy didn't disclose details of what was discussed during the interview.
ABC 33/40 in Birmingham, Alabama offers news, sports, and weather reporting for the surrounding communities including Tuscaloosa, Anniston, Cullman, Gadsden, Talladega, Sylacauga, Carbon Hill, Jasper, Hoover, Bessemer, Vestavia Hills, Alabaster, Trussville and Homewood.