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Missing/Runaway Juvenile Located



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Runaway/Missing Juvenile

Friday March 8, 2024


(Etowah County) Missing/Runaway Juvenile Sara Dena Steele has been located safe, according to Sheriff Jonathon Horton.

Sheriff Deputies responded to a report of a missing/runaway juvenile Sara Dena Steele, on March 2, 2024 in the Egypt Community of Etowah County. Sheriff Investigators immediately responded and started an investigation. Etowah County investigators have worked tirelessly since the time of report checking all leads and tips that came in. Our federal authority partners, and the East Metro Area Crime Center (EMAC) have been involved and assisted with the case.

There was some information being shared on social media that were untrue or could not be verified by Investigators. "We would like to remind everyone that posting certain information on social media starts unnecessary rumors which can slow and hinder investigations".

On March 7, 2024, Investigators located Sara during a search warrant involved with the case and say she was found safe and unharmed. Randy Smith (46) of Huntsville was taken into custody and facing charges in Madison County in connection with this case. He is also facing charges in Etowah County for Interference of Custody. The case is still ongoing and nothing further will be released at this time.

Randy Smith is currently in the Madison County Jail awaiting bond and extradition to Etowah County for the charge Interference of Custody with a $100,000 cash bond with GPS tracking.

Sheriff Horton would like to thank the media and public for helping share and create awareness in this investigation, and applaud investigators and law enforcement for their strong work ethic and dedication to locating Sara.

Etowah County Sheriff's Office thanks the Etowah County District Attorney's Office, Madison County Sheriff's Office, Madison County Narcotics Division,  Madison County Children's Advocacy Center, Madison County District Attorney's Office, East Metro Area Crime Center, FBI Violent Crimes Task Force, and United States Marshals Service North Alabama District for their assistance in this case.