SURVEILLANCE PHOTOS: Teen, coach spotted in three different states
THURSDAY, NOV. 30: The father of missing Columbia County teen Caitlyn Frisina took to Facebook to again plead for his daughter to come home.
"Caitlyn Morgan Frisina, So many are working at ensuring your safety. We know you are strong and capable young lady," Ward Frisina wrote. "I need to hear from you! I can accept all things that are placed before me. Whatever made you think this was the correct course action is not true.
Nothing is beyond our love for you! You know this place. It is safety, peace and understanding."
Authorities now believe that missing Frisina and soccer coach Rian Rodriguez are traveling up the Interstate 95 corridor and could possibly be heading towards the Northeastern United States.
Caitlyn's parents appeared at a news conference in Lake City where they begged their daughter, 17, to call them.
Caitlyn Frisina and Rodriguez, 27, were sighted at gas stations in Georgia and South Carolina and at a pawn shop in North Carolina.
Caitlyn Frisina erased her cell phone by resetting it to its factory settings, authorities said.
"We want you to know that we love you and miss you," Scarlet Forsina, Caitlyn's mother, said. "We need to know you are safe and OK. Please call us."
Authorities say they are trying to retrieve data from the erased phone. They do not feel that she is in danger. She is unable, however, to content by law, authorities said.
Police said they are expanding their efforts to the Northeastern United States, where Rodriguez and Frisina both have family.
2:50 p.m. WYFF-TV in Greenville reported that Fristina might have been seen at a convenience store in South Carolina. Authorities did not reveal the exact location.
The father of missing Columbia County teen Caitlyn Frisina said that there were no indications that she would suddenly leave with a man 10 years her senior.
Frisina, 17, is believed to be with 27-year-old Rian Rodriguez. She was last seen by her family on Saturday night.
A police report said a text message indicated that "there may be a relationship between Caitlyn and a soccer coach at FWHS (Fort White High School). When police tried to call Rodriguez on Sunday, they discovered his cell phone was apparently turned off.
Her father, Ward Frisina, says his daughter brought a boyfriend to Thanksgiving dinner and even took a pecan pie to the boyfriend's home.
Ward Frisina declined an on-camera interview, saying law enforcement advised him not to talk to the media until a Wednesday 4 p.m. news conference called by the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.
Ward Frisina is worried that Rodriguez, a soccer coach, is not taking care of his daughter and that it is unlike Caitlyn to not communicate with her parents.
The father of missing Columbia County student Caitlyn Frisina, 17, made an impassioned plea on Facebook for his daughter to get in touch with them.
"I do not have many words to say," Ward Fristina posted. "Please call us! I know you are not a little kid. We want to hear your voice and make sure you are in a good place and with someone who will truly be able to care for you.
I have always told you we can deal with anything if we have the facts. I feel that you do not have all the facts about your situation and I know you do not have the facts about how we feel right now.
Please get in touch with us!!"
Ward Fristina told CBS that he helped Rian Rodriguez, 27, get a job as a soccer coach and had checked with him after he realized his daughter was missing. He didn't pick up his phone, Ward Fristina said.
Investigators think the two could be headed to New York or Canada.
Sgt. Murray Smith with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office said Caitlyn and Rodriguez both have family in the Northeast.
Deputies say a surveillance camera captured footage of Caitlyn and Rodriguez in St. Marys, Georgia on Sunday morning. Caitlyn was seen withdrawing $200 from an ATM at a Pilot station, located at 491 St. Marys Road in St. Marys, Georgia on Sunday, deputies said.
“Early on in the investigation, we pulled some records from her ATM card and saw that she withdrew $200 from an ATM, in St. Marys, Georgia,” Smith said.
The St. Marys Police Department shared a screen grab from that surveillance video with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office. They were able to confirm it was Caitlyn, but could not share the image with Action News Jax, citing the ongoing investigation.
Deputies are monitoring Caitlyn's ATM transactions, and law enforcement agencies up the East Coast are on alert, as Caitlyn and Rodriguez both have family in the Northeast and in Canada.
“Rion, apparently got some family, in Canada, and Caitlyn has some in New York. I believe Rion has some family in the Northeast also,” Smith said.
There have been other possible sightings of the two in North Georgia and South Carolina, but authorities said there is no video from those.
The St. Marys sighting happened a day after Caitlyn reportedly wiped the data from her phone and climbed out of a window at her Columbia County home Saturday night.
Deputies say Caitlyn ran away with Rodriguez. Rodriguez coached boys soccer at Fort White High School, where Caitlyn is a senior.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement officials issued a missing child alert for Caitlyn just after noon on Tuesday.
Caitlyn's family has not seen her since Saturday night. They say she took some clothing but left behind her phone after doing a factory reset on it.
Deputies said foot steps leading away from the home indicated she was alone when she left.
Officials believe Caitlyn fled the state with Rodriguez in a red Mercury Sable with FL tag Z04CSC. Authorities said it appears Caitlyn has mutually and voluntarily gone with Rodriguez.
Once investigators track down the pair, Action News Jax Law and Safety Expert Dale Carson said it could be difficult to charge Rodriguez if Caitlyn went with him willingly and no other crimes were committed.
He said Rodriguez could face charges if the two are more than just friends.
Caitlyn's father shared a photo of him and his daughter on Facebook, asking anyone to help him get in touch with his daughter.
"We are now in the third day of her missing and having no contact with her. She left with only a few clothes. She left her phone," he said in the post. "Her family loves her and more than anything else wants to know she is safe and not in danger!"
Columbia County deputies are expected to give an update on the search for Caitlyn Frisina at 4 p.m. Wednesday.
Deputies are asking anyone who sees Caitlyn or Rodriguez to call 911 or 386-719-2005.
Original story: Deputies in Florida are searching for a 17-year-old who allegedly ran away with her soccer coach. They say Caitlyn Frisina erased all the data on her cellphone before leaving home Saturday night. She may be with 27-year-old Rian Rodriguez in a red Mercury Sable.
Rodriguez is a soccer coach associated with the team Caitlyn plays for, Columbia County deputies tell Action News Jax. Deputies say Caitlyn ran away on Saturday night and withdrew $200 from an ATM in St. Marys, Georgia on Sunday.
Anyone with information about her whereabouts is asked to contact Detective D. Marszalek at 386-719-2005.