Police Still Searching for Tennessee Teen Believed to be Abducted by Teacher

A Tennessee teen who investigators believe was abducted by one of her teachers had said she was going away for the day, but that someone should call police if she wasn’t home by evening, a relative told HLN on Tuesday.

The girl, 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas, has been missing since March 13, weeks after another student reported seeing her and teacher Tad Cummins kissing, police say.

Cummins, who had taught Elizabeth in a forensics class at a high school in Culleoka, some 50 miles southwest of Nashville, is charged with kidnapping her. An Amber Alert was issued for Elizabeth on March 14, the day after a sheriff’s department had declared her missing.

Thomas’ brother James Thomas told HLN she told one of their siblings she was going somewhere on March 13, but that someone should call police if she hadn’t returned by 6 p.m.

“She didn’t think she was going to be gone that long, I guess, because she did expect to be home by dinner that night,” James Thomas said Tuesday.

Investigators are looking into the family’s account and whether it’s relevant to the case, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation spokesman Josh DeVine said.

Authorities have received about 600 tips relating to the case, but none has produced “any credible sighting of this young girl,” DeVine said.

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SOURCE: CNN, Jason Hanna, Madison Park and Eliott C. McLaughlin