A father, desperate to find his missing teenage daughter, has made a public appeal for the girl to communicate a secret Bible passage known only to them to indicate if she were alive and had run away.
In an open letter posted to Facebook, Ruben Hernandez, father of missing 15-year-old Abigail Hernandez, asked the girl to reach out to family or law enforcement and let them know she is alive.
"We don't know if you ran away, but if you did it's important for you to know, sweetheart, that nobody is angry with you, and you are not and will not be in any trouble. I just need to know that you are OK," he wrote. Abigail Hernandez was last seen walking out of her high school in Conway, N.H., three weeks ago.
"Please, sweetheart, if you are able, find a way to let us all know that you are OK. It can be a simple message like posting your favorite Bible scripture (Book, chapter and verse.) It's the one that you also used as your password. Dad remembers what it was. You can post is on Facebook, Twitter, text it, or however you wish," he wrote.
Law enforcement officials called the open letter "a very personal appeal by the father," and said it did not indicate that police believed the girl had run away.
"We haven't taken any possibility off the table," said Kieran Ramsey, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI field office in Boston. "We don't have any solid indication that she ran away. We don't have any sold indication that she was the victim of a tragic accident and can't call for help, and we don't have a solid indication of our worst fear that she was abducted."
Abigail disappeared on Oct. 9 and was last seen leaving her high school.
Investigators have since drawn back a massive search of the area, focusing instead on "900 tips and leads" and working investigative angles rather than continuing an all out ground search, Ramsey said.
"This is a still missing 15-year-old girl with no independent financial means, who all of sudden went dark from social media and communicating with family or friends," Ramsey said.
Nov. 9, will mark one month since Abigail went missing, a typically dark milestone in missing persons cases.
"We have these cases of rescues juveniles that were abducted and then discovered - Jaycee Dugard, Elizabeth Smart, the women [abducted by Ariel Castro] in Ohio. By no means does the one month mark, mean we're giving up," Ramsey said.