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Who is Kinzleigh Reeder? Missing Tennessee girl, 6, found by dog after she was abducted by dad

Kinzleigh Reeder's disappearance was reported on May 26 in Dekalb County in Tennessee and her dad Nicholas was suspected of abducting her
UPDATED JUN 30, 2021
Kinzleigh Reeder father Nicholas (Dekalb County Sheriff office)
Kinzleigh Reeder father Nicholas (Dekalb County Sheriff office)

DEKALB COUNTY, GEORGIA: A bloodhound helped find a missing girl in an abandoned outbuilding. She was allegedly abducted by her father in Tennessee over a month ago. Kinzleigh Reeder, 6, and her father Nicholas were found by bloodhound Fred on Friday, June 25, with hardly any food or water. They were using a bucket as a bathroom in the squalid shed.

Reeder's disappearance was reported on May 26 in Dekalb County. She was found by Fred from Rutherford County Sheriff's Office in a barricaded outbuilding after investigators had narrowed down her location during the search. Reeder reportedly ran up and hugged the dog after the rescue.


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Fred (Dekalb County Sheriff's office)

The six-year-old girl was previously removed from her father's custody after they were found camping out under a bridge in rising waters in March. Investigators used thermal imaging and drones to narrow down Reeder's possible location in the Pea Ridge Community area. Officers got an item belonging to the father and 'allowed Fred to smell it', helping the bloodhound track down the six-year-old. The sheriff's office said, "They traveled to the home and released Fred who followed a footpath from the home to a burn pile, a truck and an outbuilding. He sniffed the door and doorknob, then sat down indicating he found the father." Police further said that the father and daughter were found in the back of the shed behind blankets hanging from a makeshift clothesline.

DeKalb County sheriff Patrick Ray said, "There was no ventilation and air conditioning inside the small outbuilding. There was barely any food or water for the child. The outbuilding had a strong ammonia smell where the two had been urinating and defecating in a five-gallon bucket." According to police, the father was arrested on one count of child abuse and neglect. In addition to that, he also had warrants for failure to appear in court and custodial interference. After the brave rescue, the dog was rewarded with chicken and pizza crusts. Fred's handler said, "I praised him and loved on him. I pulled the chicken reward out of my pocket. He ate the chicken and wanted to meet other people as if to say, 'Look what I've done'."

Reeder was later handed over to the custody of Tennessee Department of Children's Services. The father was previously arrested for child abuse and neglect in March after he drove his Nissan Rogue off-road where it got stuck in the creek. Reeder was then placed into the temporary custody of a family member by children's service and the father was given the approval to live at the same house after his release from jail. The Department of Children's Services contacted law officials on June 21 after they were granted custody of the girl but failed to locate her. The father has been taken into custody and his bond has been set at $175,000.