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Missing Ohio teen found hiding in boyfriend's attic, police say

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Missing teen found in boyfriend's attic
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Abbi Obermiller had been missing since June 7
  • Boyfriend rented apartment 3 weeks ago
  • Obermiller charged with obstructing police business, being an unruly child
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(CNN) -- A missing 17-year-old Ohio girl was found early Wednesday hiding in the attic of an apartment recently leased by her 20-year-old boyfriend, Norwalk police announced.

Abbi Obermiller disappeared June 7 after trading text messages with her boyfriend that indicated the two were planning to run away together, police Sgt. Jim Fulton told CNN earlier this week.

An anonymous tip alerted investigators early Wednesday to a New London apartment rented by Obermiller's boyfriend, identified by police as Robert "Bobby" Young, three weeks ago, according to police.

Obermiller was taken to the Norwalk Police Department, where she provided the names of those who assisted her in running away and hiding her, police said.

She also met briefly with her parents and grandparents before being transported to the Sandusky County Juvenile Detention Facility, police said.

"From what I'm understanding, they thought they were going to elope," Obermiller's father, James Obermiller, told HLN's "Nancy Grace" on Wednesday night. "They were going to hide out until she was 18 years old and elope and get married."

James Obermiller said he and his wife received a phone call around 4:30 Wednesday morning with the news that their daughter had been found safe.

"I don't think I've ever got out of bed that fast at 4:30 in the morning in my life," he told "Nancy Grace."

Abbi Obermiller has been charged with obstructing official police business and being an unruly child.

"She's young. She's 17. She can make some mistakes and come back," her father told "Nancy Grace" of his daughter.

Investigators believed Obermiller had left her grandparents' home in the early morning hours of June 7 on her own accord after uncovering a series of text messages between Obermiller and her boyfriend that appeared to coordinate when she would be picked up from the home, Fulton said.

According to Fulton, Obermiller repeatedly sent messages to Young asking, "How much longer?"

At 12:45 a.m. June 7, Young responded and told her to "leave now," Fulton said.

The last text message from Obermiller appeared to direct Young to her location, Fulton said.

Young had denied knowledge of Obermiller's whereabouts, according to police, saying the messages were a week old and were sent over Memorial Day weekend while the couple coordinated a swimming date.

However, other evidence indicated the couple were making plans to run away after Obermiller's parents expressed disapproval of their relationship, Fulton said.

Young was charged June 14 with obstruction of justice in the case for his failure to cooperate in the investigation, authorities said.

CNN's Sarah Aarthun contributed to this report.

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