Woman Vanishes After Helping Toddler Roaming on Highway

Carlethia “Carlee” Nichole Russell, a 25-year-old from Alabama, was plunged into uncertainty Thursday evening after she stopped to assist a distressed toddler alongside a bustling interstate.

Russell was reported missing, and before long, authorities had arrived at the scene to comb the vicinity for clues. It would take a nerve-wracking two days before the beloved woman was located alive and well.

According to reports, Russell “appeared to be in shock” on Saturday evening when she was miraculously dropped off at home. She was soon taken to a nearby hospital for evaluation. No other information has been given at this time.

The mysterious incident kicked off at 9:34 PM when Russell wrapped up her shift at a local spa and went to pick up some food for her and her mother. As she drove along I-459, Russell noticed a toddler alone along the interstate. She promptly called 911 and then dialed her sister-in-law. Russell was heard screaming while on the phone with her sister-in-law before the line went silent.

Minutes later, police located Russell’s car, cell phone, and purse. Gathering clues from a local traffic camera, they caught sight of the attentive woman’s car as it veered off the roadway. One onlooker told cops they had witnessed a “light-complexioned male” outside Russell’s car standing alongside a gray vehicle.

Hoover police remained untiring in their efforts to track Russell down. Luck seemed to be on their side when an anonymous donor threw up a reward worth $20,000, and Crime Stoppers upped it with an additional $5,000.

With their daughter missing, Russell’s parents organized a group of volunteers to search the entire area. They theorized the toddler could have been instrumentalized as bait for their daughter.

Continuing their pursuit determinedly, the investigators refused to lean toward any specific judgment. Promising to explore every plausible avenue, they declared that “nothing was off the table.”