• Teen missing after mother, stepfather arrested in Atlanta

    Updated:

    Authorities arrested the stepfather and mother of a missing Augusta teenager in DeKalb County on Tuesday in connection with her disappearance.

    LaTania Carwell, 16, was last seen in Augusta with her stepfather, Leon Tripp, on April 17. 

    Carwell's mother, Tanya Tripp, initially told authorities her daughter had traveled with Tripp to South Carolina to help a man fix a car and that the two never returned. 

    Police initially investigated the case thinking that Tripp had kidnapped his stepdaughter.


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    On Tuesday, U.S. Marshals tracked down Tripp and arrested him on felony counts of aggravated stalking and kidnapping. Authorities also found Carwell's mother, Tonya, in the DeKalb home where she had moved from Augusta to live with her husband. 

    Tonya Tripp was also arrested Tuesday and charged with hindering the apprehension of a criminal. 

    With both parents behind bars and Carwell still missing, the teen's uncle, Charles Carwell, said he just wants his niece back home in Augusta. 

    "Glad they got (Tripp) into custody and hopefully he can lead us to her," Carwell said. "At this point, I would think if he was caught in Atlanta, she would be in Atlanta also."

    Police say shortly after the girl's disappearance, Tripp was seen at an Atlanta grocery store, but there was no sign of the teenager. 

    If you have any information on the whereabouts of LaTania Tripp, call police at 404-577-tips

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