New details continued to emerge Friday in the bizarre case of Marley Spindler, a 16-year-old high school junior from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, who disappeared for six days, never showing up for her first day of school on August 20 after texting friends that she thought she was being followed — and then turned up in Charlotte on Wednesday this week, telling police that she’d been kidnapped and raped by a stranger.
On Thursday, police said they had found an unidentified teen girl in Charlotte, driving an SUV that matched the description of the vehicle in which Marley was last seen, driving away from a Chick-Fil-A fast food joint on her way, she told friends, to give a lift to a friend who was drunk, and then head to school.
That “friend,” a 22-year-old man identified only as “Jeremy,” was at first named as a “person of interest” in Marley Spindler’s disappearance, but when police interrogated him, they came away certain that he had nothing to do with it.
After police found the high schooler, their police report listed the case as “cleared by arrest.” But that arrest was not of Jeremy or a mysterious stranger — but the arrest of Marley Spindler herself.
According to a report in the Charlotte Observer, at 10:44 p.m. on Wednesday night, police notified the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice that they were charging the teen girl with filing a false police report. And now Horry County police may be considering legal action against Marley Spindler and her family to recover some of the costs of a frantic search for the once-missing girl.
When Marley was found by a police officer in Charlotte who pulled her over in the parking lot of a shopping center on Coleman Boulevard in the city, she claimed that she had no idea that she was considered “missing,” even though she had been away from home for six days.
The cop asked her if she had told her parents that she would be leaving Myrtle Beach, to which she offered “little response,” the police report said.
She then told the officer that back on August 20, when she left the Chick-Fil-A joint, someone she did not know got into her car and forced her to drive away.
At that point, according to a report by WBTW-TV, the officer called in detectives — who heard a wild story about a stranger who sexually assaulted her in her car, a story she soon admitted that she made up.
A nurse performed a rape kit on the girl, but results have not been returned as of Friday.
But plenty of questions remain about the six-day disappearance of Marley Spindler. What was she doing for nearly a week? Did her parents know of her plans? And most of all — why did she make up a false story of kidnap and rape?
[Image: Help Find Marley Spindler Facebook Page]