CRIME

Teen Sisters Who Went Missing Last Year Found Alive In Upstate New York

Police say they have arrested a family acquaintance in the case.

Police in New York have found two teenage sisters who went missing nearly a year ago, according to authorities. A family acquaintance faces kidnapping charges in the case.

State police discovered Ky-Lea Fortner and Shaeleen Fitch-Fortner on Wednesday night in Vestal, about 15 miles from where they were last seen.

Authorities arrested 29-year-old Amanda Hellman, who was arraigned and is being held in the Broome County Jail without bail.

Police called Amanda Hellman a family acquaintance, but did not further elaborate on her relationship to the victims.
Police called Amanda Hellman a family acquaintance, but did not further elaborate on her relationship to the victims.

Ky-Lea and Shaeleen were 15 and 13 years old, respectively, when they were reported as runaways last year. An 11-month investigation led police to a residence in Vestal.

"For all of us, I think 11 months goes by and you think you are never going to see them again or you think the worst, but police didn't give up," said Broome County District Attorney Steve Cornwell, according to CBS. "State Police knew that they were going to keep working the case and keep working leads and talking to people and they didn't give up."

Shaeleen Fitch-Fortner (left) and Ky-Lea Fortner.
Shaeleen Fitch-Fortner (left) and Ky-Lea Fortner.

The sisters were turned over to Broome County Family Services, NBC reports. 

The investigation is considered ongoing.

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