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13-year-old hasn't returned home yet

Yesesina Verduzco, 13, missing since Nov. 2, has not returned to her Sunnyside home, according to her parents, Rita Escobar and Manual Verduzco.

While her parents have expressed concern that their daughter may be held unwillingly by someone she left with willingly on Nov. 2, Deputy Chief Phil Schenk of the Sunnyside Police Department said the 13-year-old's disappearance is being investigated as a runaway.

"We have no reason to believe she's being held against her will," said Schenk.

Schenk said his department entered Yesesina's name into the state's Access System as a runaway on Nov. 3, the day her parents reported her missing.

Schenk said his office has received reports that Yesesina and a 15-year-old Sunnyside High School student with whom she left on Nov. 2 had been seen together in stores in Toppenish, Union Gap and, perhaps, Sunnyside.

Those sightings and telephone calls to a man the girls apparently left with on Nov. 2 have convinced Sunnyside police that Yesesina is not being held against her will.

"The risk is, if she is hiding and follows the trends of most runaways, she is put at a much higher risk than children under parental supervision," Schenk stated.

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