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Runaway girls found in homeless camp

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It was a tense 36 hours for some metro parents as they frantically searched for their daughters who had run away.

“Two beautiful girls, 12 and 13 years old, out on their own in a world like today where girls like that go missing and don’t come home,” said Morganne Sanders.

Sanders’ 12 year old step-daughter, Lillian Geraci, had spent the night at a friend’s house and ran away.

Geraci’s mom later found a note with an elaborate plan.

“Dye her hair, paint her nails, charge her iPod, take her chargers, pack a toothbrush, things like that,” said Sanders.

Sanders posted flyers and someone told her they may have spotted the girls at the Green Carpet Inn at I-40 and MacArthur, a place Geraci’s parents were told was a hot spot for drugs and human trafficking.

“She knows the gist of what she’s doing, but she doesn’t know the dangers that are involved,” said Geraci’s father, Jeremija Sanders.

Just after 4:00 p.m. Monday afternoon, police found the two girls in a homeless camp behind a bar near N.W. 39th and Pennsylvania.

Homeless camp

Homeless camp

“They were here waiting for men to pick them up,” said Elizabeth Lee with the Oklahoma Search and Rescue Council.

Lee had been working with Geraci’s family, flooding social media with the girls’ pictures.

Lee believes our state needs an endangered missing child alert, similar to an amber or silver alert.

“Little girls and little boys are being sold for sex in Oklahoma City,” said Lee.

Thankfully, this story had a happy ending. Both girls went home with their parents.

But Geraci’s stepmom says this can serve as a wake up call for all moms and dads.

“You always think not you until it happens.  And when it happens, it’s the worst feeling in the world,” said Sanders.

Sanders believes Geraci was possibly talking to an older boy on her kindle and that that may have contributed to her running away.