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MONROE, NC (WBTV) - A Monroe teen who was visiting family for the holidays in Baltimore, Maryland, has been declared missing by Baltimore police and may have been abducted, police now say.
Detectives believe Phylicia Simone Barnes, 16, who was reported missing on Dec. 28, may have been abducted, Baltimore police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. Detectives also think that her kidnappers might have taken her out of state, Guglielmi said.
The case has officially been turned over to the homicide division.
Barnes is from Monroe and was visiting extended family in Baltimore for the holidays. Guglielmi says she missed her flight home and police have been unable to reach her.
Barnes' mother told WBTV's Dedrick Russell on Monday that "bad behavior" was going on at Phylicia's sister's apartment where she was staying. The mother said that alcohol, marijuana, and several men were at the apartment while Phylicia was there.
Barnes is a straight-A student who graduated from Union Academy High School early and was planning to attend Towson University. She has no history of running away from home or disputes with her family.
Students at Union Academy are wearing purple ribbons in her honor.
Barnes was last seen at an apartment building on the northwestern outskirts of Baltimore, near Pikesville, at 2:30 p.m. on Dec 28.
According to the Baltimore Police Department, detectives and family members are extremely concerned for her well-being.
"My daughter has disappeared." Janice Sallis said. "It's like she has vanished into thin air, and no one knows where she's at. Somebody knows where she's at, and I'm telling you right now, God's gonna get you."
There was a report the missing teen was spotted at a Baltimore shelter two nights after the girl went missing, but that tip was inaccurate. It was a case of mistaken identity. The mother says that upsets her.
"All of these false leads make me feel and believe," The missing teen's mother said. "The actual culprit is trying to throw law enforcement and the media off. Someone has taken my baby against her will. This is not her character."
Phylicia's father agrees. Russell Barnes doesn't believe his daughter just went off on her on.
"This is no runaway," The missing teen's father Russell Barnes said. "This is no child that's just having a bad day or bad night. We don't feel she's done fell in love cause she's not in that character."
Police say there have been no sightings of the teen. They admit they desperately need help from the community.
"We are getting a little concerned here," Baltimore Police Officer Anthony Guglielmi said. "That it's now approaching three days. We have contacted the Maryland State Police blood hounds Unit. We have also notified the Baltimore police homicide section."
"If she's alive," the mom said. "She's scared to death. For anyone who gets joy out of that, must be a sick, perverted individual."