PA LINDA STOLTZFOOS: Missing from Lancaster County, PA - 21 June 2020 - Age 18 *ARREST*

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Amish teen goes missing after church event in Lancaster County: Police
Police in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania are searching for an Amish teen who did not return home from a church event.

"We don't know specifically that there was any foul play involved at this point in time," East Lampeter Township Police Lt. Matthew Hess said.

Police said the family of 18-year-old Linda Stoltzfoos reported her missing Monday, after she didn't return to her family's home in the rural village of Bird-in-Hand following the church event the day before.

"There was no indications that she intentionally was leaving, meaning no one is giving us any of that information," Hess said.

On Monday afternoon, dozens of agencies teamed up blocking off roads, giving Amish residents rides to and from staging areas. Community members signed up at the local fire department to search fields, barns and buildings.
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FBI assisting in search for Linda Stoltzfoos

The FBI is now assisting in the search for a missing Lancaster County woman, East Lampeter Township Police confirmed.

Linda Stoltzfoos, 18, has been missing since Sunday night, when she did not return home after attending a church service, police said.

Police are still considering all possibilities, including that Linda chose to leave without telling her family.

“With this investigation so far, we don’t have any direct evidence to say this is foul play or direct evidence to say this was her leaving on her own free will,” said Lt. Matthew Hess, public information officer for East Lampeter Township Police.

The search continued Wednesday. In addition to search parties, the effort included use of dogs, ATV equipment and drones. The Lancaster City Police Mounted unit searched the terrain on horses. Dive teams searched underwater in nearby ponds and creeks.

“Anything that would be evidence towards something, something maybe that doesn’t belong,” said Randy Nields, a volunteer firefighter with the Bird-In-Hand Fire Company who has been assisting in search efforts.

The long days of searching have been grueling, volunteers said, both from the physical effort of searching all day in the summer heat and from the emotional toll and frustration of not finding anything.

“I mean, they lost their kid,” Nields said. “But we’re trying our hardest to find her.”


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Crews continue search for missing Upper Leacock Twp. 18-year-old who didn't return from church on Sunday

Crews are continuing a search for a missing Amish woman who police said never returned from a church service on Sunday.

Linda Stoltzfoos, 18, of Upper Leacock Township, was last seen in Bird-in-Hand wearing a tan dress, white apron and a white cape, according to East Lampeter Township police.

Police are "still attempting to figure out what may have happened," East Lampeter Township police public information officer Lt. Matthew Hess said. Foul play has yet to be ruled out.

"We are investigating all angles of this incident," he said.



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Police debunk false rumors of Lancaster County child abductions circulating on social media

After several false reports of child abductions in Lancaster County began circulating on social media, police departments are working to debunk the rumors.

Several posts in various community forums on Facebook alleged children were missing or abducted in several areas of the county.

The posts included reports of a 17-year-old boy who went missing after going for a run in Strasburg, an 18-year-old woman who went missing after taking a walk in Quarryville, and several child abductions and attempted abductions in and around West Lampeter Township.

Some of the posts were shared hundreds of times.

None of the posts were entirely accurate, according to Strasburg Borough Police.

“Nothing had been reported to the Strasburg police. My research was nothing had been reported to any of us,” said Strasburg Borough Police Chief Steven Echternach.
Strasburg Borough, Quarryville Borough and West Lampeter Township police departments all shared posts on their CRIMEWATCH pages debunking the social media allegations of abductions and missing persons cases.

According to the posts, the reports of missing children in Strasburg and Quarryville were both cases of miscommunication, and the reports of child abductions were false.
“In every case so far, there have been explanations for what happened,” said Quarryville Borough Police Chief Clark Bearinger.

The increased concern could be related to the June 21 disappearance of 18-year-old Linda Stoltzfoos from Bird-In-Hand.

“I’m sure that had an effect, because obviously that is a real incident,” Echternach said.

However the posting of unverified information has the potential to cause further—and unnecessary—panic, officials said.

“That starts to become grounds for mass hysteria, and that’s what we want to avoid,” said Bearinger.

The easy accessibility of social media is a double-edged sword for informing communities, officials said. While information spreads quickly, so do unverified rumors.

Guess Who

Well-known member
another thing about young Amish, my parents hire them often to do stuff. They love to use the power tools, but once they can hear any buggies coming down the road, they put the power tools down and break out the manual tools in case it's one of the elders traveling by. They are also a lot more laid back than outsiders realize. I had many laughs with them.


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Doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, but:

Linda Stoltzfoos, 18, was reported missing this week, with a police spokesman in East Lampeter Township calling her disappearance "highly out of character" despite a desire among some young Amish people to leave the community.

"This is unlike her," Lt. Matthew Hess told NBC10. "There are certain teenage Amish kids who would have that personality or would express that interest, want to see the world. There was no indication that this is the case for Linda."

Guess Who

Well-known member
I thought Amish rumspringa was typically younger, around 16? There are differences amongst the communities though, so maybe. But I did read an article that said something like “some young people express a desire to leave the community but Linda never had”. I’ll have to find it.
since when do teen express all of their desires to their elders...jus saying. I am not convinced in any way whether she left on her own or not, just that with her age, no matter if she was Amish or not, it could go either way. Teens hold secrets, Amish or not.


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since when do teen express all of their desires to their elders...jus saying. I am not convinced in any way whether she left on her own or not, just that with her age, no matter if she was Amish or not, it could go either way. Teens hold secrets, Amish or not.

I don't disagree with you. Just pointing out what was said.
Teens of all kinds of backgrounds leave home of their own accord all the time. What do parents say 99% of the time? "They would never leave! They have no reason to run away!"


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Here's why the FBI is helping in the search for a missing Amish teen

East Lampeter police are winding up their involvement in leading the search of an area where an 18-year-old Upper Leacock Township woman was last seen Sunday before she was reported missing.

Police investigators are instead focusing attention on the hundreds of tips that have poured in concerning Linda Stoltzfoos since Monday, Lt. Matt Hess said Thursday afternoon.

Volunteer searchers continued to search into Friday afternoon.

"There's only so many times you can search the same area over again," Hess said.

Hess said many tips are general or vague, such as someone calling to say they saw a brown car or the like. But investigators process them in case more of the same kind of tips come in and a pattern can be developed.

Investigators aren't sure what happened to Stoltzfoos.

Nothing has been ruled out, but no evidence of foul play has been found, Hess said.

The FBI was brought in Wednesday, but Hess said he did not know exactly what assistance they were providing. Even if he did, he said, police likely wouldn't disclose that.

The department relies on the FBI for all types of cases, he said.

Carrie Adamowski, an FBI spokeswoman, said its involvement isn't unusual.

"A young woman's whereabouts are unknown. The reason we're involved is because we were asked to be. This isn't unusual," she said in an email. "Every day, all over the country, the FBI is providing some kind of resources or assistance to local/state/federal law enforcement partners — not just on missing persons cases, on all different types of cases. It's an important part of what we do."

" ... if our law enforcement partners ask for assistance, we'll provide it, whether it's simple manpower, evidence response capabilities, tech support, etc.," she said. "We work closely with our local and state partners on task forces, we provide training — the police departments know us, we know them, and when they call, we answer."


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Missing Amish girl’s family requests prayers, information from public to help find her

A missing Amish teenager’s family is making a plea to both God and the community to help them to find her.

Linda Stoltzfoos, 18, has been missing for six days. She was last seen leaving a Sunday church service.

Her family has created a Facebook page to share updates on their search. On Saturday, they organized a prayer gathering in Bird-in-Hand, where dozens of people participated in the worship service.

According to the latest Facebook post, the family asked that commenters use wisdom when sharing information.

“At this point there are a variety of agencies involved in continuing the search for her whereabouts,” the post explains. “Search and rescue teams, detectives, the police department, and even the FBI. If you have first-hand knowledge or information that may be considered a lead, please inform the authorities immediately.”

It continues, “You may continue to discuss your thoughts on the case. But please, keep uninformed speculation to a minimum. We kindly ask that discussions held on this page are respectful and uplifting to each other. We have and will continue the remove posts that are overly disrespectful, inconsiderate, or that are spreading false information.”


I see this as like the other recent case, most likely, anyhow, that she left of her own accord and likely with someone. I have no reason for that basis except almost every other scenario I have ruled out as unlikely (not ruled out, I guess, just bottom of the list for me anyhow). I also hope it is the case.

Bird in Hand has a population of about 400. I see a stranger abduction as highly unlikely. She was at a church group with others. Now I guess someone in her own community could have snatched her or lured her but I for one cannot think of a case like that with the Amish. If no other members of their community are missing, including adults, then it is likely someone she met from outside the fold. The 18 year age strikes a chord again, when they know (and she may know of the other recent case) once gone, LE cannot force you to return, nor can your parents, nor even force you to make contact.

Jmo and it is where I am leaning. Which would also be the best possible outcome with her alive.

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