Police Search Continues for West Virginia Teen Riley Crossman Feared Abducted

May 14, 2019 Updated: May 14, 2019

Police and volunteers are searching for a 15-year-old from West Virginia who has been missing for a week and whose family fears she has been abducted.

Riley Crossman was last seen on May 7 at her mother’s home in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, according to the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office.

Speaking to Dateline on May 13, her mother, Chantel Oakley, said Riley had come home after school as usual on May 7, and she had woken her up before an evening shift at work.

“She was acting normal. She went toward her room and I got ready for work,” Crossman explained.

At the time, Riley’s maternal grandmother was at home and stayed until around 7:00 p.m, and she was at home all evening, NBC News reported.

When her mother returned home from work at around 10.00 p.m, she didn’t notice anything unusual, she said.

“Her door was shut, so by all accounts she was in her room, but I didn’t actually see her,” Oakley told Dateline.

Riley’s family was later told by her boyfriend that they had been speaking to each other through a video call until 10:30 p.m. She had been texting another friend until about midnight, the family said.

Riley’s phone was then inactive until 5:40 a.m, when she attempted to video call her boyfriend again, according to phone records. Her boyfriend missed her call as he was asleep, he said.

Oakley did not see her daughter in her room when she woke up the next morning at 7:15 a.m.

But a family friend, Kelly Waugh, told Dateline that it is not “incredibly abnormal,” and it is usually when Riley leaves for school to give her time for socializing.

“Riley walks right across the street to the school. And her school starts at 7:45 a.m. her boyfriend was going on a field trip that day, so it was not abnormal that she went over early to say hi to him before he left for the field trip,” she said.

It was only when Riley failed to return home after school that her mother began to worry and contact her.

“At 3:30 I messaged her and said, ‘Where are you?’ I waited a second and the message didn’t deliver,” Oakley said.

Calls to Riley’s phone went to voicemail, her mother explained.

In case Riley had a dance rehearsal after school she didn’t tell her mother about, Oakley asked Riley’s grandmother to walk to Berkeley Springs High School to check if she was there. Oakley continued to search their home for any signs of her daughter.

According to the family, her boyfriend had not heard from her the whole day while he was away on his field trip.

“I was mad and scared because, at that point, no one had heard from her. Then I got the call from the school saying she had been marked absent,” Oakley said.

Riley’s mother immediately called 911 and reported her daughter missing.

Lance Crossman, Riley’s father, also tried and failed to contact his daughter, he told Dateline.

“I sent her a message saying, ‘Riley, I don’t know what’s going on, but the police have been called and this is getting serious. You need to call me now,’” he said.

Authorities have planned “a large coordinated search” for Riley on May 15.

“It’s been the worst thing that’s ever happened to any of us. None of us are sleeping or eating very well,” Crossman added. “We do have a good support system and community support. But it’s been horrific.”

Riley’s parents insist their daughter would not have run away and said she doesn’t have access to a car and has not received her learner’s permit.

“She loves us. She wouldn’t want us to be upset,” Oakley said.

Riley’s father added, “She wouldn’t just run off. She has never hurt anyone in her life. She’s very gentle.”

Their daughter has been described as 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighing 125 pounds. She has blue eyes and blonde hair, but her family has urged the public to be cautious of girls with other hair colors, in case Riley was abducted and forced to alter her appearance.

Anyone with information regarding the circumstances surrounding Riley’s disappearance or her whereabouts, please call the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office at (304) 258-1067, or call 911.

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