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A 5-year-old Tennessee girl went missing from her own home in broad daylight earlier this month, according to state and local investigators, who have been unable to identity a mysterious witness seen in a red pickup truck.
Summer Wells was last seen in the late afternoon or early evening of June 15, and an Amber Alert was issued the next day.
“I know she didn’t walk away from this property by herself, or off this yard,” her mother, Candus Bly, told WJHL-TV. “I feel in my heart that somebody came up here and took her, lured her away from here.”
Summer Wells was last seen in the late afternoon or early evening of June 15.
Bly, who until this week had avoided speaking out about the case, told WJHL that she had been planting flowers with Summer and the child’s grandmother. The girl asked if she could see her brothers, who were watching TV in the kitchen.
Bly said she left her daughter with the boys and told them to keep an eye on her. Two minutes later, she said she noticed Summer was no longer with her brothers.
“I asked the boys where their sister was, and they said she went downstairs,” she recounted to the news station.
But Summer wasn’t there, she said.
Her parents said they suspected their daughter had been lured outside and abducted.
“I’m just scared that somebody’s hurting her, and there’s nothing I can do about it,” Bly said during the televised interview. “It smothers me.”
They described the bubbly 5-year-old as a tomboy who liked to have a shaved head and loved Disney princesses.
The FBI and Tennessee Bureau of Investigation have gotten involved in the search for the missing girl.
Authorities are seeking a potential witness who was seen on Ben Hill Road in Rogersville the day Summer vanished. This person is believed to have been driving a late 1990s maroon or red Toyota Tacoma with a full-sized ladder rack and white buckets in the bed.
“We want to stress that this individual is not a suspect, but is a potential witness who may have heard or seen something that may help us in our search for Summer,” the TBI said in a statement Saturday.
That driver and anyone who may have information on Summer’s whereabouts is asked to call state investigators at 1-800-TBI-FIND.
Other residents of the area were asked to review their security cameras and trail cams for possible clues in the case.
“I wish they would come forward and explain themselves,” Bly told WJHL of the pickup driver. “If you’re not a suspect, at least come forward and say what you’ve seen.”
The missing girl is about 3 feet tall and weighs around 40 pounds, investigators said. She was last seen wearing gray pants, a pink shirt and may not have had shoes. She has blonde hair and blue eyes.
It’s not the first time one of Bly’s close relatives has gone missing.
Her sister, Rose Marie Bly, was last seen leaving her home in St. Croix Falls, Wis., on Aug. 21, 2009.
Police found her car in a truck lot five days later in Grantsburg, about 15 miles north of her destination in Cushing.
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