A Florida mom whose young daughter disappeared at 14 years old said she recently received a letter from the missing teen.
Pam Massimiani told InsideEdition.com that her daughter, Emily Paul, vanished five years ago, leaving a note behind. The Bay County Sheriff’s Office initially classified Emily as a runaway, but now her mother has hope after getting the newest letter.
Although Massimiani said she won’t disclose the content of the letter they received, the family is pretty confident it’s from Emily, she said.
Massimiani said the teen never made it clear why she left, but the family never stopped searching for her.
“The police got involved," Massimiani said of her daughter’s disappearance. "I wasn’t sure what to think, I was in shock that my child was gone."
Emily’s last contact with her family was in April 2013 when she left a note stating that she was running away and vanished with only a suitcase and her Xbox.
Police said Emily had searched and followed tips about how to be a successful runaway before her disappearance, the News Herald reported.
She also stopped using her social media accounts afterward. The last evidence of her whereabouts were three cellphone pings in the week after she went missing, according to reports.
Bay County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Joel Heape told People.com they are still looking to confirm whether the letter is truly from Emily.
Each year, the family has celebrated Emily’s her birthday in March with a cake. She recently turned 19.
“We have never given up,” Massimiani said. "I want to assure her we respect her privacy and freedom as an adult to live her life openly wherever and however she desires.”
The case is an ongoing investigation and anyone with information can contact Capt. Jason Daffin with the Bay County Sheriff's Office at 850-747-4700.