EDMOND, Okla. — It was a tearful reunion Tuesday morning between a young girl and her father whom she had been taken from three years ago. The girl was found by US Marshals Monday, in Edmond.
The girl, who is now 13, was taken by her biological mother in June of 2010. Her mother had her for a custodial visit in Kansas City, Missouri but never returned her to her father.
The girl’s father, William Warren, never gave up hope he would find his daughter. Monday he got the call his daughter had been found in Edmond.
US Marshals say they took the girl’s mother, 52-year-old Carla Osborne, into custody peacefully at an Edmond home. They then called her father in Kansas City to tell him he could come Tuesday and take his daughter home.
Marc Crawford, with the US Marshals, said, “For the past three years she’s been a prisoner in her own home, not being able to go out as she wanted to. It was a life no one wants to live.”
A life that has now come to an end. After three years on the run 13 year old Lillie Warren is now back in her father’s arms.
Her father said, “I’m just glad the cameras weren’t there because it was tearful. It was joyous.”
William Warren said, “I knew someday and at some point we would see each other again and I just held on to that thought.”
He says while Lillie is happy, it is a confusing situation for the girl. She and her mother had been staying with people in Edmond, people whom the girl grew close to.
Her father says those relationships don’t have to end.
Warren said, “She’s met some people that tried to help and I guess over the last month she’s gotten attached to them. She feels going home now she’s betraying them. I told her that’s not the case. We can try to stay in contact with them.”
US Marshals say when they found Lillie she was happy to see them, but nervous about what was next.
Crawford said, “For the most part she was excited about seeing her father and about closing this chapter of her life and moving on.”
Though she’s been out of school for three years Crawford says she was working to stay educated.
Crawford said, “Knowing that she was out of school this child was continuing her education, teaching herself. She had some math books and other books.
William Warren says it will take time to readjust to life together, but he’s willing to do whatever is necessary to help Lillie.
Warren said, “I don’t think I’ve been so happy in the last three years.”
As for the girl’s mother she now faces charges of child abduction and interference with child custody.
Joining NewsChannel 4 is Dr. Melissa Rich from Christian Counselling Services to talk more about the difficult road ahead for this young teen and her dad.
According to the United Nations Convention on Child Rights, child abduction by a parent is considered a very serious form of child abuse.
Here is the earlier story we did when the girl was first discovered:
Read our previous coverage of this case.