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Teenager who vanished for four years before walking into police station 'argued with man' and told him 'I will go back'
30 July 2023, 07:34 | Updated: 3 August 2023, 07:42
- Read the latest: Mum of teenager who vanished for four years urges people to stop visiting her home in ‘dangerous’ search for answers
A missing 18-year-old girl who walked into a police station after disappearing for four years was heard arguing with a man and threatening to "go back", it has been claimed.
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Neighbours said Alicia Navarro was shouting with a man in their flat in Havre, Montana, some 2,000 miles from her family's home in Glendale, Arizona that she fled from.
They heard the argument on Saturday last week - the day before she walked into the police station to identify herself.
"I was here the other day and I heard them yelling. She did say, 'I will go back.' But that's all I heard," neighbour Garrett Smith, 22, told The New York Post.
He had seen her about 30 times in the town, and saw her holding hands with a man. The pair seemed shy and "closed-off".
The man seemed to start avoiding Smith after he told him he was from Phoenix, which is not far from Glendale. He appeared to be in his late 20s.
He said he spoke to Navarro once when she said she was "looking for her uncle" near the town's post office days before the row. She did not seem to know the area.
"She was asking for directions. She looked scared," he said.
"She said she was walking with her uncle and got lost and she's looking for 6th Street. I later found out that she was referring to him as her uncle."
His girlfriend, Megan Alexander, 23, said they saw Navarro enter a "random house". Smith found it odd Navarro called him "mister" because he was only a few years older than her.
She seemed scared and had a "scratchy voice".
"Her braces looked pretty bad. She had braces on when she went missing in Arizona in 2019. It looked like she still had the same braces on," Smith said.
Police detained and questioned a man on Friday but it is not known if he was the man the couple saw Navarro with.
She ran away from home after leaving a note to her sleeping family saying she was leaving in September 2019, days before her 15th birthday.
She said she would be back but vanished for four years.
The now 18-year-old was described as safe and well and her mother declared "miracles do exist" after she returned on Sunday.
Eyewitnesses in Havre said heavily-armed officers searched a flat a few streets away from the police station in Havre, and a woman resembling Navarro was spotted at the scene.
She and her mother, Jessica Nunez, have not been reunited in person, but have spoken "briefly" on the phone, according to the family's private investigator Trent Steel.
Navarro has not made "her intentions clear" over whether she will come back to Glendale.
"Alicia is an adult, so it will be her decision as to whether or not she remains in Montana, returns to Arizona, or goes elsewhere, regardless of the investigation," a Glendale police spokesperson said.