News

Newburgh Police Say Disappearance Prompting AMBER Alert ‘Did Not Occur’

(credit: CBS 2)

(credit: CBS 2)

NEWBURGH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A day after an AMBER Alert was issued for a supposedly abducted 5-year-old girl, authorities now think the whole thing never happened.

State Police cancelled Wednesday’s AMBER Alert which was issued following a report that the girl was abducted off the street and forced into a pickup truck.

Police went door to door overnight looking for the little girl. However, no child was ever actually reported missing by a parent.

The Newburgh Police continued to investigate the alleged incident, but closed the case Thursday afternoon, saying they concluded “the incident did not occur.”

“We investigated every possible lead in determining whether the abduction had occurred with the interest of any possible victim in mind. There is no indication that the abduction or any incident that could be perceived as an abduction had occurred. There was no pickup truck, other vehicle or small child during the time of the reported incident. Detectives continuously reviewed video footage prior to, during and post the report for any possible incident. None were observed. The reporting children were observed playing around the school without incident. We have not received any missing person reports,” Detective Lt. Dan Cameron said in a statement.

The original alert was issued based on reports from several witnesses — children ages 5 to 11 — who said they saw a 5-year-old girl being abducted near South Junior High School around 4 p.m. Wednesday.

The kids watched as two men in a black pickup truck pulled up to the school, grabbed the girl and forced her into the truck, police said. The kids said one suspect was holding his hand over her mouth to stop her from screaming, according to police.

The official AMBER Alert described the missing girl as African-American. However, early Thursday, police said she was “possibly Hispanic.”

Police said the girl had dark hair just below her shoulders and is about three feet tall. She was wearing a short-sleeve bright pink shirt with white stripes on it.

The suspects were originally described as Hispanic men. One had long hair and was wearing a black shirt and a black fitted baseball hat. Investigators said they were driving a black or dark pickup truck with possible green writing on it.