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Hoover (AL) 25-Year-Old Vanishes After Stopping to Help a Toddler on Interstate, Police Say

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Carlethia "Carlee" Nichole Russell is seen in an image released by the Hoover, Alabama police department. Russell, 25, has been missing since Thursday, according to police.

By Jamiel Lynch and Chenelle Woody, CNN

CNN — A Hoover, Alabama woman has gone missing after telling a 911 dispatcher that she saw a toddler walking alone on the side of an interstate, according to Hoover police.

The woman, 25-year-old Carlethia “Carlee” Nichole Russell, called 911 around 9:34 p.m. local time on Thursday, according to a Facebook post from the Hoover Police Department.

Carlethia “Carlee” Nichole Russell is seen in an image released by the Hoover, Alabama police department.

Russell told the dispatcher that she saw a toddler walking on the side of I-459 South. After calling 911, she stopped to check on the child and called a family member who lost contact with her, though the line remained open, according to the Facebook post.

When officers, who were already enroute from the initial 911 call, arrived at the scene, they found Russell’s vehicle and some of her belongings, including her phone, but no sign of her or the child. Police have not received any reports or calls for a missing child, according to the Facebook post.

In a press conference on Friday, police said the case remains open and active and a reward of up to $25,000 has been offered.

Russell’s mother, Talitha Russell, told WBRC that she was working to stay positive during the search for her daughter.

“We are trusting God, we are staying positive, we are not allowing any negative thoughts to enter our minds,” she told WBRC. “So all that we are doing is trusting God, believe in God that our daughter will be brought home safely.”

Russell is 5 feet 4 inches tall and was last seen wearing a black t-shirt, black pants, and white Nike shoes, according to the Hoover police Facebook post.

Anyone who believes they may have seen Russell or may have any information about this case is asked to call Detective Brad Fountain at 205-444-7562.