Sheriff Don Reynolds with Zoe Carles at her home. Her mother is in the background. -- Photo furnished by Laurens County Sheriff's Office

UPDATE: Missing girl is safe

Authorities were seeking 12-year-old Zoe Carles, who disappeared Thursday night
Zoe had over a 6 hour lead on our search efforts. We have no reason to believe that Zoe is in any immediate danger, but we will not consider her to be safe until she is home with her family." - LCSO statement

Zoe Carles was found Saturday about noon and returned home safely, a report said. The search for Zoe Carles had resumed Saturday morning. Laurens County Sheriff's Don Reynolds said he was reviewing video at a store when he received word the girl had been found in a field about two miles from her house. Reynolds said his office had received tips about Zoe Carles being seen at at least two stores, but video proved it to be another girl who looked like Carles, the sheriff said.



The Laurens County Sheriff's Office would like to thank all the various organizations and volunteers who have helped in searching for Zoe Carles over the past 21 hours. We received help from local, state and federal agencies because everyone understands the importance of finding a missing child. Our mission is to protect and serve and our efforts will continue until Zoe is located and is back safe with her family.

Our investigations have determined that Zoe willfully left home sometime prior to 5:00 pm Thursday afternoon. Once the LCSO was notified at 10:58 pm, our search efforts began. Unfortunately, because of the time lapse between her leaving and our knowledge of her disappearance, Zoe had over a 6 hour lead on our search efforts. We have no reason to believe that Zoe is in any immediate danger, but we will not consider her to be safe until she is home with her family.

The Laurens County Sheriff's Office will continue our investigation to locate Zoe and ask that the community please pray for Zoe's safe return, as well as being alert and reporting any information that could help in locating Zoe. Thank you all for your outpouring of support.



Law enforcement has suspended a search and classified the disappearance of a Clinton girl as a runaway.

A person saw 12-year-old Zoey Carles Thursday night on Greenplain Road with a backpack. Law enforcement and volunteers searched for her Thursday night and into Friday afternoon. She was declared a runaway in a 2 pm briefing by Laurens County Sheriff Don Reynolds. The focus for law enforcement has shifted from search to distributing fliers asking the public to report sightings of Carles.

No Amber Alert was issued because there was no evidence Carles was abducted, authorities said.

The mobile command center of the Greenwood County Sheriff's Office and many law enforcement, emergency response and private vehicles flooded onto the driveway and lawn of 1634 Greenplain Road today (March 24) as people came out to search for Carles. A SLED aircraft was involved, and the FBI was called in. Carlas is a black female, 5 feet tall, weighing 115 pounds, with brown eyes. Anyone with information about her whereabouts is asked to call 911.

"Right now, we are setting up checkpoints and passing out fliers. We are just trying to make people aware that she is missing," Laurens County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Jarvis Reeder said.

The search lasted 15 hours. Third District Congressman Jeff Duncan sent out a notification that Carlas had visiting his office, and asked for the public's help in finding her. Foot, ATV and horseback searches were conducted in the heavily wooded area around Carlas' house and the barn she went to about 6 pm Thursday. Authorities got a call around 10:58 pm that she had not returned.   

An investigation determined that she took a backpack with clothes and food, Reeder said.


PREVIOUS LCSO STATEMENT: Deputies from the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office are actively searching for a missing 12-year-old female near the 1600 block of Green Plain Road, Clinton. 

At 10:58 p.m., Deputies received a call for service stating that 12-year-old Zoey Carles left the residence around 6:00 p.m. headed to a barn on the premises and had not returned. 

K-9 Units from the Sheriff’s Office as well as the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) Aviation Unit are actively trying to locate Carles. 

12-year-old Zoey Carles is described as a Black Female, brown eyes, 5’0” tall and 115 pounds.  Other emergency personnel and volunteers were contacted to conduct a more detailed search as the morning approached. 

If you see this female or have any information, please contact law enforcement or 911. A missing person search is continuing Friday afternoon.



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