LOCAL NEWS

Lehi Woman Pleads For Return Of Passport Before Trip To Help Human Trafficking Victim

Mar 1, 2020, 10:34 PM | Updated: 11:27 pm

LEHI, Utah – Police are searching for a purse snatcher in Lehi, but the victim doesn’t even want her money back. That’s because there is something inside her purse that is much more important — her passport and IDs.

Candace Lierd said leaving her garage door open overnight Friday night was a huge mistake.

“When I came out in the morning, the passenger door was partially open and my clutch that was on the passenger seat was gone,” Lierd said. 

Her purse had vanished. By the time she woke up, the thief had already maxed out her credit cards. 

“They went to quite a few places all over South Jordan and Sandy and Lehi on a fun shopping spree,” Lierd said. 

But Lierd doesn’t care about the money. She only cares about her passport and government-issued IDs that were also taken.

That’s because Lierd volunteers as a medical advocate to help children who are victims of human trafficking. She gets them needed medical attention and brings them to the U.S. or other countries where they are safe.

Lierd has a trip to Eastern Europe coming up very soon. It’s a mission to bring a boy back to an American hospital. 

“When we found him he had been beaten and severely malnourished,” Lierd said. “He’s really on the verge of death. He’s 16 years old and weighs less than 22 lbs.”

Without her passport, she will not be able to make the trip.

“There’s a reason why we go quickly when we’re told it’s time to go,” Lierd said. “And time is of the essence.”

If Lierd can’t get to the child, she believes he’ll be put back on the street, where he would die.

Candice Lierd volunteers as a medical advocate to help children who are victims of human trafficking.

Because of this, she has a plea for the person who took her passport.

“I don’t want to press charges. I will thank you — I will even give you a hug,” she said. “Just bring me back the passport because it’s not about me. It’s not. There are kids waiting and I need to go get them.”

Lierd asked that whoever took her passport find a way to turn it in or contact her anonymously to let her know where it was dumped. She said she isn’t interested in pursuing criminal charges and just really needs her passport back.

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Lehi Woman Pleads For Return Of Passport Before Trip To Help Human Trafficking Victim