2-year-old girl goes missing in the night, 3-hour multiagency search ensues

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ST. GEORGE — A 2-year-old girl went missing from a St. George residence in the middle of the night Sunday, prompting a large multiagency search.

At approximately 3 a.m. Monday, St. George Police officers, detectives and SWAT team, along with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and Search and Rescue team responded to the 1300 South block of 2580 East in St. George after it was reported that the 2-year-old girl was missing, St. George Police Officer Lona Trombley said.

“The mother and child were visiting town and staying with a friend in the area,” Trombley said.

After the friend – who had reportedly gotten off work late – returned home, the mother and the friend went outside to visit, police said.

“The 2-year-old had been put to bed but was not asleep at this time,” Trombley said. “It appears that shortly after her mother left, the little girl went outside to find her.”

Earlier in the day Sunday, the child and her mother had reportedly gone for a walk, Trombley said, adding that the mother told police she thought her daughter may have tried to retrace their steps.

After an extensive three-hour search, members of the Search and Rescue crew located the girl in a field just before 6 a.m., Trombley said, noting that the 2-year-old was “huddled on the ground for warmth.”

“When (Search and Rescue crews) called to her and touched her back, she started to cry and asked for her mom,” Trombley said.

Medical personnel checked the girl’s vitals, police said, and she appeared to be in good health. The 2-year-old was transported back to the house and reunited with her mother, whom the girl was reportedly “very excited to see.”

“The girl told her mom that she was trying to find her and went running out the door,” Trombley said. “She said she tried to follow the path they had gone on earlier in the day but got lost and cold.”

“This is the best possible outcome for this type of situation,” Trombley added. “We are grateful to the agencies who responded and helped get this little girl back to her mother safely.”

Per protocol, Trombley said that an incident report was created and would be forwarded to the Child Protective Services Division for review.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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