Police Believe A Missing Jogger Found Alive Was Kidnapped And Held For 24 Hours

UPDATE 4:00pm – Police have charged a 38 year-old man with abduction and rape following the investigation into an 18 year-old girl’s disappearance. He will face the Bendigo Magistrate’s Court this afternoon.

EARLIER: An 18 year-old jogger who went missing in Bendigo was found alive after 24 hours and a frantic search by authorities. Today, word is emerging that turns the situation far more sinister than first thought – it is believed that the young woman was kidnapped and held hostage.
Police are today at the scene in Maiden Gully – an area to the west of Bendigo in Victoria’s central region – where the University student was found yesterday in a car, some 13km away from the area where she disappeared from.
A 38 year-old man was believed to have been answering questions from Police at the Bendigo Police Station last night.
The ordeal began on Wednesday afternoon when the teen set off for a jog through the One Tree Hill Regional Park at 3pm. She sent a Snapchat to friends roughly a half hour later, then a text messages at around 4:30pm. At that point, she vanished – with her phone turned off and untraceable. Yesterday afternoon she was discovered in a car by Police officers making routine checks – some 13km away from her last known location, and on the other side of Bendigo itself.
Investigating officers have been inspecting the scene today, with the area remaining cordoned off. It is believed that police have removed evidence from the area.
The teen was discharged from hospital at 10pm last night, after being taken in under precaution.
Police have requested the woman’s name not be reported after they revealed the 38 year-old man was assisting officials with their investigation.
Inspector Michael Talbot stated that the investigation will focus on whether she was deliberately taken, and if she was attacked in any way.

“Investigations are now under way as to how she ended up where she was, what she saw and who she was with, and what circumstances led up to her being found.”

“We believe there may have been some intervention by others. It’s quite a distance. It’s not somewhere you’d just walk to. We’re not exactly sure of those circumstances, but we will find out.”

“We will be focusing on (her), what she can tell us and what information we can glean on what has occurred.”

“I’m aware that she is emotionally upset but as far as physical injuries go, I don’t believe there are any outward physical injuries. She’s been found safe and will hopefully get better soon.”

The investigation into this absolutely horrifying situation continues.

Photo: Nigel Kileen via Getty Images.