Missing Helper City teens found in California

ST. GEORGE – Two Helper City teens reported missing on Nov. 29 were located in California Monday.

Jesse Turner (left) and Mattea Jeffs (right), location and date unknown | Photo courtesy of the Helper City Police Department

Nikki Jeffs, Mattea’s mother, told St George News by email on Dec. 9 that there had been a confirmed sighting of the two teenagers in Salem, Utah, on Nov. 30, but nothing since then.

“Extreme distress is not close to how I feel,” Nikki wrote . “Mattea is such an amazing girl. She is even the first girl in Carbon High history to letter in football. Her sister had just started a fundraiser to get money for her letterman jacket. Mattea is always funny and kind. I just cannot comprehend this all.”

Then nothing, until yesterday, when Nikki emailed St. George News at 5:13 p.m. “As we speak, Mattea and Jesse are safe in LAPD custody,” Nikki wrote.

Chief Trent Anderson, Helper City Police Department, said in a statement that Los Angeles Police located Jesse Turner, 16, and Mattea Jeffs, 17, at a home in Hollywood after receiving a tip. The teens were found at around 5:30 p.m. PST, Monday, and are reported to be in good condition.

“They’re in protective custody and their parents are on the way to get them,” Anderson told St. George News. Also, as far as he was aware, Anderson said no criminal activity has been reported in connection to the teens.

According to Anderson’s statement, “The Helper City Police Department is grateful for all those who assisted in this investigation.”

A representative for the Los Angeles Police Department was unable to comment  regarding the discovery of the teens, citing police policy prohibiting the release of information pertaining to minors.

St. George News Editor-in-Chief Joyce Kuzmanic contributed to this report.

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