A 24-year-old New York woman was missing for two weeks before returning home. Her friend says the missing girl was being held against her will and managed to escape. Police in New York previously said they didn't "have a lot to go on" after Rachael Mattice vanished from a family camping trip on June 22. Two weeks after going missing, Mattice returned to her family home in Johnstown, New York, about 50 miles west of Albany, on July 6.
It was Rachael Mattice's father who contacted police on June 24 when he saw his daughter's car, abandoned, close to a family campsite on Algonquin-Lake in Wells, New York. While her mother, Wendy, says that she normally talks to Mattice multiple times a week. The last time Wendy Mattice heard from her daughter was through a text message on June 22.
Sheriff Karl G. Abrams had told the media on June 30 that the family regularly went camping at Algonquin-Lake. He added that at their site, there was no sign of a struggle or a suicide note. He concluded, "There's no good direction to go." The Albany Times-Union reports that the family had been going to the campsite for years.
Mattice's mother told Fox News that her daughter texted her just before she got to a no service area in the campsite. The message read, "I'm at the bottom of the hill. Goodnight and I love you."
In a statement after Mattice was found, Sheriff Abrams said:
"In the early morning hours Rachael Lynn Mattice returned to her Johnstown address after being gone for approximately 2 weeks.
She is currently being medically evaluated at a local hospital. She appears to be in good condition. There is still currently an active investigation ongoing." ABC Albany reports that Mattice was treated at Nathan Littauer Hospital and was released. After she was found, Mattice's cousin, June Mattice Robinson, wrote on Facebook, "This is better than winning the lottery!! I love you Rachael Mattice!"
While another cousin, Ron Mattice, wrote, "Rachael has been found and is alive! Normally I dread a call at 1:00 in the morning, but this is the best news I could have ever imagined! I don't have any other details other than that she was taken to the hospital and I am told will be OK. I huge thank you to everyone who has helped the past 2 weeks. Rachael is back with her family!"
Here are the photos of Rachael Mattice that you need to see: