Authorities: Missing teen returns home

COVINGTON — The Newton County Sheriff's Office has announced that the 14-year-old Cousins Middle School student reported missing early Sunday has been located.

"Emily Miller, the missing teen from Newton County, has returned home unharmed about 12:30 a.m.," said NCSO spokesman Lt. Tyrone Oliver. "This case is still under investigation as to where she was and who she was with."

Miller is believed to have left her home in Oxford between midnight and 1 a.m. Sunday. Her family reported her missing after 7 a.m. that morning.

Oliver said an alert was issued early Sunday evening due to the teen's medical issues that require daily medication, which Miller did not take with her.

Oliver said he interviewed the teen upon her return.

"We're still looking into where she was at and who she was with," Oliver said, though he added that it is believed the teen's activities on social networking sites figured into her disappearance.

"She was with a stranger and she's lucky to be returned home safely," he said.

Oliver said investigators "have an idea" where the teen spent the 24 hours away from home.

"We're trying to determine more information about that," he said.

Charges against the girl and the adult involved could be forthcoming, he said.

"Charges will be determined pending the outcome of the investigation," he said.

Oliver said the case is a good example of the importance of Internet safety.

"Parents need to stress that teens should not give out their home address, telephone numbers or other personal information to strangers. Something bad can happen to them," he warned, adding that predators are often savvy in getting more information out of teens than they realize they are giving.