What happened with Abby Hernandez’s disappearance in New Hampshire?

Abby Hernandez left Kennett High School in New Hampshire on October 9th; she hasn’t been seen since. It’s a weird case for a couple of different reasons:

1. She disappeared on Oct. 9, but her mother received a letter from her on November 6th — it was dated Oct. 22 and postmarked Oct. 23 (hence, two weeks after the disappearance). Authorities didn’t release a lot of information about the letter, but apparently did deem it to be “authentic” and “in a tone Abby would have used.” The FBI has used the term “promising developments,” and Abby’s mother sent her a letter in December urging her to “come home for Christmas.”

2. Her parents seem to have opposing viewpoints on why she ran away. The father thinks she was fleeing her home life (parents are divorced, it appears) and even asked for custody in a Facebook post; the mother is adamant that she did not run away. This part is weird: Abby’s mom uses concepts like “she bought two new songs on iTunes the day she disappeared” or “she had plans the next weekend” as justifications for why she wouldn’t run away — but the mother has presumably also seen the postmarked letter mentioned above. If that letter contained “promising developments” and she has seen it, wouldn’t it possibly refer to whether she was in the captivity of someone, etc? If it didn’t refer to something like that, then by strict definition she ran away from home.

3. There was a rape in a nearby area about 11 days after the disappearance; there are some similarities (not a ton) to Abby’s case.

4. She’s 15 years old and doesn’t have any source of her own income, so the three essential options are: (a) deceased, (b) being helped by someone financially, or (c) being kept by someone.

5. Not a ton is known about the whereabouts map and all that, but some has been released. She was texting with friends after she left school on Oct. 9; initially the report was that she went home, but that was later proven false. Instead, police have a ping on her cell phone from 6:30pm — four hours after she was last seen — from Cranmore Mountain in NH. Here’s the gap between the school and Cranmore:

6. Here’s the WebSleuths forum on this case. Take it all with a grain of salt. And because people always ask, yes, she did have a boyfriend — although he seems to be cleared. Abby, though, had recently “befriended an older boy on Facebook.”

Ted Bauer