GORHAM — Like so many people returning from vacation, Detective Brian Key spent the first part of his workday poring through an overflowing inbox of emails.

So the statewide bulletin from the week before that asked police to be on the lookout for a teenage runaway was fresh on his mind as he pulled up to a house on Huston Road Monday afternoon to investigate a complaint of stolen firewood.

As Key and Sgt. Dana Anderson questioned the residents, Key spotted a girl in the house that resembled Harley McGinnis, 15, of Palmyra.

McGinnis had been reported missing by her grandparents, who are also her guardians, on Aug. 16. They said she had threatened to run away before she disappeared.

When questioned by Key, McGinnis identified herself.

“We had no independent information she was in town,” said Anderson, who credited Key with being observant and thorough.

McGinnis was in good health and there was no indication she was being held against her will.

“She was hooked up with this family. Where they met her is unclear at this time,” Anderson said Tuesday. “She may have misled them about her name and her age.”

Key returned with the girl to the station and her family came to get her.

Family members said they feared the girl had left the state and were relieved at her return.

Anderson said the officers are still trying to get to the bottom of the theft of firewood from a house in the Huston Road neighborhood.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this story.


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