Found: Southern Utah teen runaways found in South Dakota

Oceia Grainger and Kade Shearer, 15-year-olds, found Oct. 6, 2012, in Aberdeen, South Dakota. Runaways from Toquerville and La Verkin, Utah, Sept. 29, 2012 | Photos from "Missing" flyer courtesy of Deb Shearer

UPDATED 1:43 p.m. – per interview with South Dakota Highway Patrol Trooper

ST. GEORGE – Two teens, Oceia Grainger and Kade Shearer, both 15, of Toquerville and La Verkin, Utah, respectively, who went missing on Sept. 29 have been found in Aberdeen, South Dakota – one of the areas identified on Oct. 4 as possible destinations to which the teens might be headed.

The Shearers received a telephone call this morning around 9 a.m. from a state trooper with the South Dakota Highway Patrol notifying them that the teens had been found and were in custody.

Deb Shearer texted Shirlz McArthur, mother of Oceia Grainger, with the news and McArthur, herself, received a call from the trooper shortly thereafter.

“All we know is they were in Aberdeen, South Dakota, and (Kade) was driving over the center yellow line and that was called in,” a relieved Deb Shearer said, “The police pulled him over and discovered the two inside were runaways and the vehicle had been stolen in Idaho.”

“All I know is they had a report on reckless driving and when they went and pulled Kade over, they found he was in a different stolen car – and they had been camping the whole way,” McArthur said.

Washington County Sheriff’s Detective Nate Abbott confirmed the mothers’ reports.

“We received word from Brown County, South Dakota, that (they) had been picked up by the Highway Patrol. It was called in as a reckless driver and they were in a stolen vehicle,” Abbott said. “From what I was told, the vehicle they were stopped in had been reported stolen out of Idaho.”

“We just love ’em and we’re glad they’re found,” Deb Shearer said with audible emotion. Whatever happens next, Deb Shearer said they would be with them and support them and help them through whatever is going on. Shearer, choking and crying, said, “We’re really sorry for anyone they have wronged.”

“I’m just relieved that (Oceia’s) at least able to be warm,” McArthur said. “They told me when they found them they were cold and hungry.”

According to, temperatures in Aberdeen last night ranged from 24-28 degrees between 12 and 7 a.m.

The teens are in custody and subject to possible detention orders (the juvenile equivalent to adult warrants) in Utah, Idaho and South Dakota. Abbott said that typically the magistrates in the juvenile detention systems would coordinate efforts when multiple states are involved.

The parents have not been permitted to speak with the children yet and they don’t know what charges will be brought.

Possible charges may include vehicle thefts in Hurricane and Ephraim, Utah, and in Idaho for the vehicle they found driving, along with whatever charges South Dakota may bring.

McArthur said she was told she might need to wait until Monday to hear from the South Dakota state’s attorney.

Shearer took consolation in knowing that Kade and Oceia are safe and they are not going to hurt themselves or anyone else.

The parents still can only speculate on what motivated their teens to run away. Kade Shearer had gotten in some previous trouble and may have been running to avoid facing those charges.

But they hope that the community will welcome them home and be willing to support them as they work through the process of helping these kids.

Besides the fact that they were in a vehicle that been reported stolen when they were pulled over, Shearer said that news of them missing had been put out “on the wires” by everybody. “We had them listed in the missing and endangered websites, and the runaway teens websites, and on Facebook,” she said. The lookout worked as the trooper was able to identify them as runaways when he pulled them over.

South Dakota Highway Patrol confirmed the teens were there in custody.

UPDATE 1:43 p.m. 

St. George News spoke with South Dakota Highway Patrol Trooper Rick Olauson by telephone. He confirmed the circumstances of finding Oceia and Kade, as reported in this story. He said on receiving a vehicle driving complaint, he responded to a rural area in Brown County and was able to locate the vehicle and make contact with the juveniles.

The vehicle had been reported as stolen out of Adams County, Idaho. The Highway Patrol determined the teens as runaways through the NCIC computer system – National Crime Information Center, an FBI computerized index which includes information on missing persons, among other things.

As to the teens’ condition, the trooper said they are fine, that they seemed to be in good health, they were clean. He also said that on first impression they hadn’t eaten, but they had been eating. “We found a bunch of food items in the vehicle,” he said.

“They don’t seem like bad kids,” Olausen said, “they’ve been cooperative with me, we got them in (the juvenile detention center), they are safe, they are in a warm environment, they’ve got clothing, food, shelter – they’ll be fine until we can get them returned home.”

Olausen said there are charges pending in his jurisdiction. He was not at liberty to say what charges might be brought in South Dakota as he is still doing his investigation. He said he was sure they will be returned home to Utah.



Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @JoyceKuzmanic

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2012, all rights reserved.

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  • PJ October 6, 2012 at 12:51 pm

    Seems like Kade Shearer is a real stand up and accept responsibility for his actions kind of guy.
    (rolling my eyes)

  • Carl October 6, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    PJ please do not judge. I know him personally. These were kids and we don’t know exactly what their motives were. I think love and kindness and support are what these kids need now. They should be held accountable for their crimes but I personally think with a little kindness they could become good upstanding citizens in the future. I think I speak for everyone when I say we are thankful they were found unharmed. Prayers to their family’s and God bless.

    • Jackie Campbell October 10, 2012 at 7:55 pm

      Think about Carl…… Two kids attempting to run away from their problems? That shit doesn’t work. It’s ignorant. Oceia and Kade were both my friends but the fact that they would attempt to run away? That’s stupid. Especially since both Oceia AND Kade have been in trouble in the past with law……..Running away isn’t gonna do jack shit for them. Duh. they are just putting themselves in MORE trouble. Kade should have just gotten his Shit straighten out instead of making it worse. I know what it’s like to just want to run away, believe me. I’m on probation, I hate where I live, I’m suicidal etc etc. I know what it’s like to just leave and never look back. But honestly I know that I can get in HUGE amounts of trouble. At least I’m somehow educated with the law and know what these people are capable of. Unlike these two. Before you deny everything that I just said, Stop defending them and face reality that what they did was stupid and that getting their probation orders that they are already assigned with over with would have been the best decision. My strategy in getting through my shitty life is to count down to the day I turn 18 and can leave my depressing life behind and move back to LA and pursue my dream in being a famous artist. I hope Oceia and Kade can both realize that running away from their problems and they can learn from the mistake they have made

  • Cody October 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Screw you pj you don’t know them and you sure are brave for hiding on the Internet

  • Heather October 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Like Kades Mom said, I hope the community can welcome them home, embrace them and support them to get through this and know that it can be put behind them. Givig up on our youth only tells them we don;t care and leads them to road they really don’t want to travel.. We all make mistakes in liife, these kids need positive support!!

  • Murat October 6, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    This report supports my previous thesis that these children are ridiculously incompetent at running away. I’m generally right all the time.

  • Annalisa October 6, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    These kids stole my car from Ephraim and I spent all week looking for them, not my car and belongings. I believe they are good kids who made some really bad decisions. Their families were worried sick about them; they are only kids after all. I kept in touch with their mothers almost all the time. I’m glad they are safe and unharmed. But, yes, I’m ready to get everything of mine back.

  • Shon October 7, 2012 at 6:07 am

    Im very glad these kids were found safe . However I do believe these kids need to be punished (and before his or her friends attack me at least listen) There is NO excuse for STEALING a person car by the time you are 15 years old you know the difference between what is right and what is wrong .. Make an example of them now at 15 before they walk down this path at 18 .

  • Kelli October 8, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Annalisa, sorry about your car! I’m glad that one of the first things the mom said was “We’re really sorry for anyone they have wronged.” It gives me hope that the parents will make the kids understand how serious their crimes are. That’s the type of “Love” and “Support” these kids need right now.

  • DoubleTap October 8, 2012 at 11:04 am

    Kelli, at 15 these “kids” understand how serious their crimes are. It is good that they were found unharmed and will be returned to their families. However, it would be a dis-service if these youngsters were not held accountable for their greivious actions. They do need to know that there are severe consequences for their crimes. They caused alot of inconvenience and hurt to others, and that it is not acceptable behavior. LikeS hon states, it is better to learn a lesson at 15 than at 18 or older.

    • Kelli October 8, 2012 at 2:06 pm

      My sentiments, exactly – could not agree more, DoubleTap! Sounds like these “youngsters” committed some very grown-up crimes indeed. Better to address it firmly now to prevent the creation of monsters.

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