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Utah girl found safe; questions abound about disappearance

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By The Associated Press
Friday, Jan. 11, 2013, 9:26 p.m.

SALT LAKE CITY — A 13-year-old girl who disappeared this week without shoes or a coat in chilly weather has been found unharmed, but questions abound about where she was and what she was doing while 1,000 volunteers searched for her for two days.

Brooklyn Gittins called her grandmother late Thursday from a Wal-Mart store in South Jordan, Unified Police Lt. Justin Hoyal said. The woman then contacted police and officers located the child. She was uninjured and wearing the same clothes.

Authorities don't know whether to label the case a runaway or an abduction. What they do know is that Brooklyn crawled out of her bedroom window and left on her own accord. She was picked up in a car by a person or persons who then harbored her, Hoyal said.

“To take somebody who is that age and leave without parental consent is problematic,” he said.

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