Carson

Carson OKs $100K Reward in Search for Missing Teen

“It almost feels like I’m able to breathe again,” Alinka’s brother said. “I feel like this is definitely going to help"

Moses Castillo

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Editor's Note: Alinka Angeline Castaneda was found alive April 17, 2023. Click here to read more.

The City of Carson approved Tuesday night a $100,000 reward in the search for a 16-year-old girl who has been missing since January.

The reward would be distributed to whoever provides information leading to an arrest and conviction, since someone may be holding Alinka Angeline Castaneda against her will, said Moses Castillo, a retired Los Angeles Police Department detective and advocate for the family.

“It almost feels like I’m able to breathe again,” Alinka’s brother, Alan Toruno, said. “I feel like this is definitely going to help.”

Maricela Avila Roses said her daughter left home early on New Year’s Day without a credit card, ID, or change of clothes. Then, on Jan. 19, Roses said she got a call from her daughter, leading her to believe the teen is now a victim of human trafficking.

“She’s called her family at least three different times. Each time she sounded under duress. And she said something to the effect of, ‘They’re not letting me go. I don’t know where I am at,’ and that she has to hang up,” Castillo said.

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Roses told NBC4 last month that her daughter didn't hang out with many friends, but she met a young man two days before her disappearance.

Since Alinka left, her cellphone has remained disconnected and her social media accounts have also been disabled.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Carson station, the lead agency on the case, said investigators are following up on leads and using social media in the search for Alinka. Castillo said the Carson mayor and city council have requested help from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Anyone with information is asked to reach out to authorities.

“I really do hope that anybody that has any information, regardless of how minimal it may be or they think it may be, to just come forward because at this point any information would definitely help us,” Toruno said.

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