Kennewick police is investigating a viral TikTok video that features a young woman that many believe is a girl who went missing following an alleged kidnapping 18 years ago.
In 2003, a 4-year-old girl named Sofia Juarez went missing near her home in Kennewick, Washington. Police chased leads that she was abducted by someone she knew and is living in Mexico but were unable to find the young girl, but did not give up on locating her.
Woman in Viral TikTok Says She Was Kidnapped as a Child
Kennewick police recently set up a new webpage in an effort to obtain new leads about the nearly two-decades-old case and received dozens of tips about Juarez's disappearance. Among the tips, was one crucial piece of information that might help law enforcement solve the case – a TikTok video of a young woman in Mexico claiming she was kidnapped as a young child.
The woman bore a striking resemblance to Juarez as a child and to the missing child's age-progression photos. In the footage, a man in Sinaloa, Mexico, is interviewing the woman. He claims to be 22 years old but admits that she does not know her age for certain. Juarez would have been 23 years old. The woman adds that she is not a fan of birthdays due to a traumatic event at an early age.
"The truth is, I don't know where I'm from," the woman says in Spanish. This led many to believe that the woman in the video could be Juarez. If you'd like to view the video, you can click here.
Police Trying to Locate the Woman for a DNA Sample
According to another tip posted by a "highly credible witness," a female matching Juarez's description was seen walking on the sidewalk at the time of her disappearance before being approached by a person driving an older van. The person then led her away as she cried.
Kennewick police said they are investigating both leads. "We are aware of the TikTok video. Investigation is being conducted into that. Thank you to those who sent information on that video to us. It is appreciated," police said in statement on their webpage.
Al Wehner, a special investigator with Kennewick police, said since learning of the video a few weeks ago, he's been working with the department's Spanish-speaking detectives and the man who shot the clip, a popular TikTok personality, to track down the woman and confirm whether she is, in fact, the young girl who vanished in 2003.
"I think it's just a matter of time before we're able to locate her and hopefully get her to provide us with a DNA sample so that we can compare that to a DNA sample that we have for Sofia," he said.