Where is Athena Brownfield? Oklahoma girl, 4, vanishes while her sister, 5, is found abandoned near home

Where is Athena Brownfield? Oklahoma girl, 4, vanishes while her sister, 5, is found abandoned near home
Missing girl, Athena Brownfield, has blonde hair and was last seen wearing a butterfly hoodie (Screenshot/KOCO 5 News)

CYRIL, OKLAHOMA: Oklahoma authorities are trying to locate a girl who was reported missing Tuesday, January 10, after a mail carrier reported that her 5-year-old sibling was unattended and without adult supervision. Athena Brownfield was reported missing around 2.pm from the 200 block of West Nebraska in Cyril. She has blonde hair and was last seen wearing a butterfly hoodie. The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) initially stated Athena was 3 years old, but has since confirmed she is 4 years old.

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Around 9.pm Tuesday, police cordoned off the residence with barrier tape and set up a command post at the nearby Family Life Church. OSBI said Wednesday it's now assisting Cyril police in the search. The FBI, the Caddo County Sheriff's Office and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol are also assisting in the matter.

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“The whole town has been out. We’ve also used dog teams and infrared,” OSBI spokesperson Lt Michael Francis said according to CrimeOnline. “We’re asking the community that if they want to come help to come to the Faith Church here in Cyril. That’s where we’re coordinating search efforts.”

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Where is Athena Brownfield?

OSBI officer Brook Arbeitman said law enforcement is working to put together an exact timeline of when Athena was last seen. "We're still working on putting together the exact timeline. But again, I can confirm that this investigation really kicked off yesterday at 2.pm when the postal carrier located the 5-year-old and contacted the police department. And then we got involved later that night," Arbeitman said according to KOCO. "Then, of course, all of our law enforcement partners have joined us, and we've been looking for her nonstop since the original call came into the police department."



 

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Authorities have deployed infrared helicopters and conducted thorough searches on foot with the assistance of volunteers and using four-wheelers. They also have utilized boats on small ponds. "Our ERT Team, which is a team specialty trained to go on foot in search of people and things, are out in coordination with civilians who have come and wanted to volunteer their time and effort," Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Eric Foster said.

Arbeitman stated that they are trying to collect relevant items but she said that she does not consider them evidence as of Wednesday afternoon. "We are finding things around town that could be helpful in this case," Arbeitman said. "We are finding things that we hope might give us clues on where she is. We're still actively looking for her."

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Amber Alert not issued

As Athena's disappearance did not meet the specific guidelines required an Amber Alert was not issued. "The Amber Alert has specific guidelines that we have to adhere to push out the Amber Alert specifically," Foster said. "The Amber Alert goes out nationwide. Once we push that button, it goes all the way to Washington, D.C., and goes out like that. So, there's specific things and guidelines that we have to follow. Not every part of that guideline came into play in this, so that wasn't done."

However, on Tuesday, a missing and endangered person alert went out to people in a 15-mile radius of Cyril. "That's why you didn't get it statewide – those emergency alerts statewide," Foster said. "It went locally, and that was really the important timeframe that we needed to get that out."

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He added that information was also put on social media so people and the media could get the information out to more people."It was done in a very efficient way by guidelines," Foster said. and there are reasons for those guidelines that the Department of Justice puts out those guidelines to help us kind of put that together."

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