Amber Alert Activated More Than A Year After Tennessee Teen Vanishes
Daphne Westbrook was allegedly kidnapped in 2019 and found safe in May 2021.
During the last week of May 2021, Daphne Westbrook, 18, was found safe in south Alabama.
She posted to her Facebook: "I was not kidnapped!!!! I just ran away from home, chill out people and leave my family alone!” She later posted a video of herself with her dog after some people questioned whether the initial post had really been been made by her, WBMA reported.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigations said, "We’re issuing our AMBER Alert now, because a warrant has been issued for a qualifying crime in Tennessee, and in hopes that – should evidence place her and John in another state – that state will be able to issue an AMBER Alert faster."
Seventeen months after a 17-year-old child disappeared from Chattanooga, TN, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations has issued an Amber Alert to the public.
On October 4, 2019, investigators say Daphne Westbrook did not come home from a weekend visit with her non-custodial father who is identified as John Westbrook. WRCB says Daphne messaged her mom and asked if she could be a little late coming home that weekend so she could go on a walk with her dog and a friend. Daphne never made it back to her mom's home.
According to a post on the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations (TBI) Facebook page, eight months after Daphne was last seen, authorities say they finally secured a warrant charging John Westbrook with custodial interference.
The TBI indicates one full year after Daphne vanished, they were able to finally add her as a missing person to her website. Now, according to People, it's possible Daphne's father may be allegedly "drugging her" to keep her in an "altered" state of some kind.
Westbrook, who is reportedly an information technology expert, was supposed to move to another state after her visit that October 2019 weekend, but instead, police say he allegedly took his daughter and left town.
Hamilton County District Attorney Neal Pinkston spoke out to WRCB. Pinkston said his office found evidence that Daphne was being held against her will by her father in Santa Fe, New Mexico or Denver, Colorado. Pinkston went on to say investigators know that in November 2020, Daphne and her father were in the Denver area and then in February 2021, they spent "weeks" in Pueblo, Colorado.
On February 23, 2021, according to the TBI, a grand jury indicted Westbrook with aggravated kidnapping in connection to Daphne's disappearance.
The TBI said in a recent Facebook post, "Evidence uncovered during the investigation into John Westbrook has led authorities to become increasingly concerned for Daphne’s wellbeing."
Westbrook has connections to many states including: California, New Mexico, Colorado and Washington state.
Daphne stands 5-feet 3-inches tall and when she went missing, she weighed 110 pounds. Westbrook stands 6- feet 4- inches tall and weighs 200 pounds. He has brown eyes and brown hair. Reports say it's possible Westbrook purchased hair dye and false teeth to alter his appearance.
If you have any idea where Daphne or John Westbrook could be, please contact the TBI directly: 423-209-7415 or 1-800-TBI-FIND, or email TipsToTBI@tn.gov or FindingDaphne@hcdatn.org.