Carlee Russell's Parents Insist Her 'Abductor' is Still at Large as Police Remain Tight-lipped on Investigation [Video]

The parents of the Alabama woman who went missing upon finding a toddler on the side of the road have spoken out for the first time since their daughter returned home.

via: Radar Online reported on Carlee’s disappearance last Thursday after she called 911 to notify authorities about a child walking on I-459 South, a highway that runs south of Birmingham.

Police said Carlee returned home Saturday alone and on foot around 10:45 p.m. Now that she’s been reunited with her family after an agonizing wait, her loved ones are speaking out.

“There were moments she had to physically fight for her life and there were moments she had to mentally fight for her life,” Carlee’s mother, Talita Robinson-Russell, said alongside her husband Carlos Russell during their appearance on the TODAY show.

Police said the 25-year-old had pulled over to check on the child while she was on the phone with a family member, who heard Carlee scream before they lost connection.

When officers arrived at the location, her vehicle was still running and a number of her personal belongings had been left behind. There was no sign of Carlee or the toddler, and no children had been reported missing during that time.

“There were actually just so many calls and texts from people who maliciously lied to us,” Talitha said about the tipsters who contacted them with false leads on her whereabouts. “I just didn’t know people could be so evil.”

New police dispatch audio revealed indicated that Carlee was “unresponsive but breathing” when she returned to her parents’ house. Talitha noted an investigation is still underway so they couldn’t go into much detail about the case, adding that more will be shared in the weeks to come.

“She’s having to deal with the trauma of people just making completely false allegations about her,” her mom said in an emotional update. “Carlee has given detectives her statement, so that they can continue to pursue her abductor.”

Carlee’s mother said they are overjoyed to be reunited with her and are focused on her healing journey going forward. Meanwhile, the $63,378 donated to the local Crime Stoppers chapter to be used as a reward for info is in the process of being returned.

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