Pearl Pinson is still missing after her alleged abductor, Fernando Castro, was shot and killed by police in a standoff Thursday afternoon. She wasn’t found inside the car that he was driving, but was seen being dragged by the suspect earlier.
KCRA 3 reports that the man in connection with kidnapping 15-year-old Pearl Pinson from Vallejo, California — Fernando Castro, 19 — was killed after leading authorities on a pursuit through the Los Alamos area in Santa Barbara County. He fired shots at law enforcement and was killed during an exchange of gunfire, according to the Solano County Sheriff’s Office.
— Missing Kids Matters (@KidsofWorld) May 27, 2016
The sheriff’s office said that the shootout took place at a mobile home park, where Castro left his car and got into another vehicle.
Pearl wasn’t in the car with Castro, or anywhere else to be found. Police are still searching for the missing Vallejo teen.
The sheriff’s office said Pearl Pinson was last seen around 7 a.m. Wednesday on an pedestrian crossing above Interstate 780 that leads from Home Acres to Taylor Avenue in Vallejo.
An eyewitness told investigators that Castro was dragging Pearl, her face bloody as she called for help. Her abductor was said to have a gun.
The witness said a gunshot was heard while trying to get help for the victim. By the time authorities arrived at the scene, they discovered blood on the ground. It wasn’t clear if Pearl had been shot.
It’s believed that Pearl knew Castro, but details surrounding their connection hasn’t been revealed.
An Amber Alert was issued Thursday morning. Castro was driving a 1997 four-door Saturn with California license plate 5XZD385.
The missing Vallejo teen was last seen wearing a gray sweater and black leggings. She has dyed green hair and was carrying a black and turquoise backpack. BNO News adds that the 15-year-old is 5-feet-3-inches-tall and weights 130 pounds. Pearl wasn’t in school on Wednesday, the sheriff’s office said.
The sheriff’s office is working with the Solano County Office of Emergency Services. A search-and-rescue team has been dispatched to find Pearl.
Anyone with information about Pearl is urged to call 911 or the Solano County Sheriff’s Office at 707-784-7061.
When the Amber Alert was issued, the suspect was described as being “armed and dangerous.” The alert was in effect for Solano County, Yolo County, Sacramento County, Contra Costa County, Alameda County, Napa County, and San Joaquin County.
Pearl Pinson’s father — James Pinson — told FOX40
“We just want her back home, that is all, back home safely. I’ve been out all day searching, they told me to stay home but I just didn’t listen and I went out anyway,” Pinson said.
Pearl’s father notes that his daughter also has a pierced lip.
“We are very concerned,” Deputy Christine Castillo said. “Our number one priority right now is reaching out to our community, asking for their help and finding Pearl.”
— Cristina Rendon (@CristinaKTVU) May 26, 2016
If Pearl Pinson wasn’t in the car with Fernando Castro, it’s unknown where she might be located or if she’s gravely injured. Authorities are on a frantic search to find the missing teen.
The Miami Herald reports that Solano County Sheriff Thomas Ferrara hopes to find the Vallejo teen alive.
“We continue our search, and we hope to find her alive,” Ferrara said.
Many are holding onto hope that Pearl Pinson will be found alive. The circumstances surrounding her disappearance are disturbing in that she’s already seriously injured and wasn’t in the car her alleged abductor was found to be driving when he was shot and killed.
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