On the evening of August 9, 2017, the Missing in Minnesota Facebook page received a private message containing a link to a post by the Alexandria Police Department. The message was simple: “Please post this on your site.”
15 year-old Jasmine Block had been missing for approximately 26 hours by this time and the police were already hard at work looking for her.
Two days later, on August 11, 2017, another message from a different person. This message contained an updated poster with Jasmine’s pictures. So many people were working so hard to spread the information about Jasmine.
No one knew then where Jasmine was or who she was with, no one knew what hell she was living.
This past Tuesday, while the majority of kids in Minnesota were sitting in classrooms on the first day of school, 15 year-old Jasmine was escaping.
According to Alexandria Chief of Police, Rick Wyffels, Jasmine ran to multiple farm houses, through fields and swam across a lake before she was able to find someone to help her.
Headlines started popping up Tuesday late in the afternoon: ‘Missing Alexandria teen found safe in rural Grant County’.
At Missing in Minnesota, this wasn’t the first time we had seen a headline
On November 18, 2015, Samantha and Gianna Rucki were found, 944 days after they had disappeared, at the White Horse Ranch located in Grant County, Minnesota.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Chief Wyffels said, “the suspects were in search of a place to find to hide their identity, we believe. So they’re in rural Grant County staying in corn fields and wooded areas and they had Jasmine the whole time.”
Jasmine was in an isolated location with no idea where to turn for help. Her escape was amazing and her bravery unparalleled. What she endured in those 29 days was undoubtedly horrific.
Jasmine, like the Rucki sisters, left her home because she believed she was with someone safe, someone familiar. Most child abductions share this commonality – children are not afraid to go with someone with whom they are familiar.
This is a frightening fact.
According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, familial abduction is significantly more common than stranger abduction.
This is what happened to the Rucki Sisters – they were abducted by their mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki.
On Tuesday, law enforcement officials reunited Jasmine with her family.
We wish Jasmine and her family the very best with their recovery.