Alexis Waller, an 11-year-old girl from Arkansas, is back with her family after running away from home last week, taking a cab ride across three states before she was found.
According to the Daily Mail, Brent Waller discovered that his daughter Alexis was missing on December 5, and at first feared she had been kidnapped. The girl’s parents called police, and investigators jumped into action to find her. After checking her phone records, police uncovered the 11-year-old’s call to the Little Rock cab company.
Alexis had reportedly stolen $10,000 in cash her grandmother had hidden, left the family’s home in the middle of the night, and hitched a ride with a stranger to a nearby gas station. Waller then called the cab company, asking a driver to take her to Jacksonville, Florida, about 830 miles away.
According to KARK-TV, Alexis wanted to make the trip in order to see a 16-year-old boy she had met on vacation two years ago, and has been in touch with ever since, though he knew nothing of her attempt.
— Austin Kellerman (@AustinKellerman) December 12, 2014
Officials at the cab company said that Alexis wore heavy makeup and appeared to be 17 or 18, and the driver didn’t ask her any questions aside from her final destination and whether or not she had the fare, which would have totaled $1,300.
“I said I need to go to Jacksonville, Florida,” Alexis recalled. “He’s like, ‘do you have money’ and I’m like, ‘yes.'”
The cab company was able to contact the driver Alexis had hired, who relayed that they were driving in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia. Her parents immediately hit the road, driving nine hours to pick the 11-year-old up. Brent Waller said that they found themselves angry, yet relieved to have so quickly found Alexis.
“You have the rest of your life to punish her. You just want to hug her and just love her because you got her back and that’s what’s important,” he said.
Alexis said that she was likewise relieved when her parents found her, having realized the danger of her situation.
“I’m actually glad I got found. I knew I made a mistake after a while and I didn’t have a phone,” she said.
The driver who agreed to take Alexis to Florida will not face any disciplinary action, according to his superiors, unlike another cabbie who found himself in a questionable situation, as the Inquisitr recently noted. The Waller family now plans to push for legislation that would force cab drivers to ask minors like their 11-year-old daughter for identification.
[Image: KARK and Facebook via the Daily Mail]