California teen, 16, missing after night out with friends, police say

A California teen vanished earlier this month after spending a night out with her friends, and her family is now pleading for her return.

Aranda Briones, 16, of Moreno Valley, Calif., was last seen on Jan. 13. Her friends said the teen was dropped off at Moreno Valley Community Park that evening but surveillance video has not shown her near the area, investigators said, according to KABC.

"They pulled footage, and they don't know if the time was wrong, but it looks like nobody was dropped off between 6 and 6:30," the teen’s brother, Daniel Briones, told KTLA.

Daniel said a friend told the family that his sister got into a grey sedan. However, the family said they don’t know anyone who owns a car with that description.

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Daniel said he found it strange his sister did not say where she is going since the two are very close.

"That's why it's so out of the ordinary, because she wouldn't just go somewhere without telling me," he said.

A friend reportedly said they noticed Briones was in Rubidoux the night she went missing. The friend was able to determine her location due to a feature on the Snapchat app. The teenager has not posted on social media since that night.

Police said they were searching the Moreno Valley Community Park area. The Moreno Valley Police said their department’s anti-human trafficking team and the FBI have been searching for the girl.

Briones’ uncle, Matthew Horstkotte, told KABC his niece may have been around some unsavory elements.

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"She did have a bad choice of friends, I'll be honest, you know everybody does," Horstkotte told KABC. "Everybody makes mistakes, but you know one thing I want? I just want her home safe."

Horstkotte said he has not been able to function at work since the teenager went missing and has urged anyone with information to come forward.

"Nowadays, you know teenagers want to cover up for a friend or someone says, 'I don't want to tell because I'm scared.' But just come forward,” he said.

Police have described Briones as 5-foot-4 with brown hair and hazel/green eyes. Anyone with information on her disappearance has been urged to contact the Moreno Valley Police Department at 951-486-6700.