“No… that’s a big mistake judge she should be with me her mother not with him.” “Quiet down please, I’m sorry but my decision is final. The child will be placed with her father and a week from today a social worker will go with Pepper to your house to get her things. Mrs. Landen I suggest you get yourself some help and go into rehab if you ever want a chance at seeing your daughter again?” "I don't need help I just need to be with my child that's all." The judge didn't say a word and just like that the hearing was over.
1 week later…
“Mrs. Landen are you here? It’s Jane the social worker we talked on the phone this morning.” The front door swings open knocking Jane to the ground. Pepper’s mom grabs ahold of her daughter and pulls her into the house locking the door behind them. Jane stumbles back up and starts banging on the door “Mrs. Landen, Mrs. Landen don’t do this she’s only a child please don’t hurt your daughter?” After 3 minutes of silence she pulls out her cell phone and calls 911 and in a frantic voice asks for the police to rush over to Mrs. Landen’s house right away.
The police arrive in less than 10 minutes and they call out to Tracy Landen but nothing just silence. They break down the door and head inside but no one is there and when they head into the bedroom they find clothes all over the room like someone was in a hurry to get out. The police walk to the back door and its wide open, Tracy Landen’s house is surrounded by a forest that goes for miles.
When Mr. Landen is informed that his ex-wife has kidnaped his daughter he tells the detective that Tracy knows those woods around her house like the back of her hand. “We will find Pepper don’t worry Mr. Landen we have every cop out looking in those woods, on the roads and your daughter’s picture and your ex-wife’s are out everywhere someone will spot them.”
Joe Landen and the Alabama police search for the women and child for years but there is no sign of them. Tips come in that people have seen the mother and daughter at a gas station or at HEB’s but tip after tip come up empty and even though the case remains open it’s almost like Tracy and her daughter Pepper have simply vanished.
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