Alabama woman vanished after stopping to help child walking near interstate; police search now underway

Published 11:50 am Friday, July 14, 2023

Alabama police are searching for an Alabama woman who disappeared just after she stopped to check on a child she spotted walking alone on an interstate.

Hoover police say the incident happened at approximately 9:34 p.m. Thursday when their 911 center received a call from a 25-year-old female on I-459 South near mile marker 11 who reported she saw a toddler walking on the side of the interstate.

After calling 911 the caller stopped to check on the child and called a family member to report the same details.

The family member lost contact with her, but said she heard Carlethia “Carlee” Nichole Russell ask the child if she was OK through the phone, then heard a scream, then only highway noises.

Officers who were already en route to the location of the initial 911 call located the female’s vehicle and some of her belongings nearby, but were unable to find her or a child in the area.

Police reportedly found her wig, hat and cell phone near her car, which was still running.

Hoover Police have not received any other calls of someone missing a small child.

Detectives are currently investigating this incident and are requesting the public’s assistance to help locate the missing person.

The 911 caller was identified as Russell, a 25-year-old black female who is 5’4, 150-160 lbs. She was last seen wearing a black shirt, black pants and white Nike shoes.

Anyone who believes they may have seen Russell or may have any information about this case is asked to call Detective Brad Fountain at 205-444-7562.