Law enforcement officials all along the East Coast are on the lookout for a Florida high school student and a 27-year-old soccer coach who might be heading to Canada.
The family of 17-year-old Caitlyn Frisina says she turned up missing on the morning of Sunday, Nov. 26. Since then the Fort White High School soccer star has been spotted four times at locations between Georgia and North Carolina—always in the company of the school’s boys soccer coach, 27-year-old Rian Rodriguez.
It is believed to two have been heading north in Rodriguez’s 2001 Mercury Sable, possibly headed for Canada, where Rodriguez may have family.
“Rian, apparently got some family, in Canada, and Caitlyn has some in New York,” Sgt. Murray Smith with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office told CBS News. “I believe Rian has some family in the Northeast also,” Smith said.
Caitlyn deleted all the records from her cell phone and left it behind when she snuck out.
Sudden and Unexplained Departure
Frisina’s family are baffled by their teen daughter’s sudden disappearance. They have taken to social media to plead with their daughter to come home.
Caitlyn’s mother, Scarlet Frisina, told CBS News that the family considered Rodriguez a friend and that while her daughter left voluntarily, she thinks her daughter was deceived by the 27-year-old coach.
“I know that she to some degree left on her own. But I absolutely believe that she was lied to and totally misled,” Scarlet said.
New photos of missing #Florida teen Caitlyn Frisina. These are her senior photos, taken earlier this month by her aunt. Family says they just want to know Caitlyn is safe https://t.co/ifyTiw1XXl pic.twitter.com/5M1wWTRfvn
— Brittney Donovan (@brittneyANjax) November 28, 2017
Sgt. Murray Smith told CBS that Rodriguez has no criminal record and that there was no indication of a romantic relationship between the teen soccer star and the soccer coach.
“He was a fine young man he was a mentor to the soccer team,” Smith said. “There was no indicators that he would do something like this.”
Caitlyn’s disappearance was so devastating to her family, Smith said, because there were no signs of anything being amiss.
“If they had a prior relationship it was a very, very tight secret,” Smith told CBS. “Caitlyn actually has a boyfriend. The boyfriend actually spent Thanksgiving with her.”
Under Florida law, Rodriguez could be charged with interfering with child custody, a felony charge.
“There is a criminal component to this investigation,” Smith told CBS. “However we are focusing solely on getting Cailyn home.”
The pair was first caught on a surveillance camera at a gas station in St. Mary’s Georgia on the morning of Nov. 26, shortly after Caitlyn’s family discovered she was missing. Caitlyn can be seen withdrawing money from an ATM at a Pilot station at 491 St. Mary’s Road, about eight miles off I-95.
“Early on in the investigation, we pulled some records from her ATM card and saw that she withdrew $200 from an ATM, in St. Marys, Georgia,” Sgt. Smith confirmed.
Rodriguez’s car was later spotted at a gas station in Hardeeville, South Carolina. Later that afternoon, the pair showed up on surveillance video from a convenience store in St. George, North Carolina.
The last sighting came Sunday night at a pawn shop in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement issued a missing child alert for Caitlyn just after noon on Tuesday, Nov.28.
A Fla. MISSING CHILD Alert issued for Caitlyn Frisina, W/F, 17yo, 5'7", 135lbs, BR hair & eyes, from Lake City. May be w/ Rian Rodriguez. May be heading north in 2001 red Mercury Sable, FL tag Z04CSC. Have info? Contact Columbia Co. SO at 386-719-2005 or 911. pic.twitter.com/0hAXufqJbE
— FDLE (@fdlepio) November 28, 2017
Do you think Rian Rodriguez should be charged with crimes if Caitlyn went with him willingly? Post your comments below.
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