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Missing New Jersey girl spawns social media flurry

By David Ariosto, CNN
updated 3:58 PM EDT, Mon October 1, 2012
A photo of Kara Alongi from her Twitter feed.
A photo of Kara Alongi from her Twitter feed.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Police say someone called a taxi company asking for a car at Alongi's address
  • The driver identified Alongi as the girl he picked up and took to a train station, police said
  • The teen's post drew national attention and big buzz on social media
  • No foul play is thought to have occurred

(CNN) -- Police say they are searching for 16-year-old Kara Alongi, a missing New Jersey girl who generated big buzz on social media with a post about a possible intruder.

"There is somone in my hour ecall 911," she posted on Twitter at 6:20 p.m. Sunday before she went missing. It is believed she meant "someone in my house, call 911."

The comment spawned a flurry of activity on the social networking site, with thousands using the hashtag, #helpfindkara. The girl's Twitter account had also netted nearly 100,000 followers by mid Monday.

No foul play is believed to be involved, said Clark, New Jersey, Police Chief Alan Scherb, who added that there were no signs of forced entry and nothing missing from the home.

But the teen's post drew national attention, with several people posting her photo in hope of locating her, as well as broader speculation about what may have transpired

"A girl named kara got kidnapped tonight in my town. if you ALL could RT this, that'd be amazing," said Twitter user "Joshua," whose user name is @chommikk. "RT" means "retweet," or forward the message.

Police say there is no indication of a kidnapping.

The series of posts also prompted indignation from social media users like Jill Brown, whose username is ‏@YoungJillian_.

"I understand the whole #helpfindkara, but what about every other child that goes missing everyday?" she wrote. "What makes this different?"

Alongi, who was home alone, did not call police, police said. Her parents phoned authorities after they realized she had gone missing.

Adding to police suspicion, authorities say someone called a taxi company asking for a car at Alongi's address around the time her Twitter message was posted.

The driver later identified Alongi as the girl he picked up and said he drove her to Rahway Train Station, Scherb said.

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