LOCAL NEWS

UPDATE: Police finds missing girl, safe and reunited with family

Aug 9, 2022, 6:19 PM | Updated: 8:46 pm

UPDATE: Layton Police confirmed that Natale has been found in Salt Lake City after someone spotted her and called police.

She is safe and is being reunited with her family. Police are still gathering information, but expect no foul play.


LAYTON, Utah — Layton Police asked for the public’s help in finding a missing teen who has already been through some severe trauma.

Her past experiences have added to the urgency in finding her safe. KSL TV is not revealing details to avoid victimizing her again, but what she’s been through has added to concerns for her safety.

“She suffered some severe emotional trauma,” Zeke Fortenberry, the attorney who represents Natalee’s family said. “Natalee was dealing with some depression, anxiety. She didn’t feel worthy. Those types of things are what she was struggling with. An event triggered her at the center and she just took off running as a mechanism to try to cope with it.”

Natalee’s family decided to share her picture and name.

“We just want people to be vigilant, to be on the lookout,” Fortenberry said.

Natalee first disappeared in Texas after a Dallas Mavericks home game last April. She was found a week later in Oklahoma city where police say she was held against her will.

“It was a really difficult decision to release her picture. We’ve tried to respect her privacy and make sure that she’s kept private because it’s not fair for a 15-year-old victim to be outed,” Fortenberry said.

Police and search and rescue looked in the areas around the Layton treatment facility. Fortenberry said she left hastily and was barefoot at the time.

Layton Police Lt. Travis Lyman said, “She isn’t from this area. She doesn’t really have a support network here and so the likelihood is that she’s probably trying to travel, maybe back to where she’s from.”

It’s hard to know exactly what happened, but family members are eager to find her with the hope that she’s safe. She has a whole life ahead of her but as Fortenberry, who works with trauma victims said, there is still a lot to overcome.

“This is just kind of an extra layer of stress they never anticipate. Unfortunately, it’s all too familiar,” he said.

Natalee’s family traveled to Utah so they can help with the search. The teen had just finished a 90-day treatment program and started the program in Layton.

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UPDATE: Police finds missing girl, safe and reunited with family