KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The Knox County Sheriff’s Office said they have located a missing Knox County woman.
The sheriff’s office said Heather Duncan, 23, was located in California. Investigators said based on phone calls to Duncan, they do not believe foul play or coercion are involved and are closing the case. They said the case could be reopened if new information surfaces.
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Heather Duncan appeared in a YouTube video with another woman, Anna Leigh Settle, 23, who was reported missing to the Knoxville Police Department and a man believed to be Settle’s boyfriend, Bryan Henderson. The three say they are not missing.
“To all of our friends and loved ones, everyone in Knoxville and to whoever is watching, we are safe. We’re not missing. We are not kidnapped. He is not a crazy master manipulator,” said Heather Duncan in the video.
The three say they’re gone because they’re fighting for the rights of Americans to legally use medical marijuana.
“If and because you believe what the cops have told you that all the charges will be dropped, I don’t want to talk to you. I don’t want to see you. I want you to leave me alone,” said Anna Settle in the video.
WATE 6 On Your Side reached out to Knoxville Police Department to see if there was any change in Settle’s missing person case. They say until she speaks with a law enforcement officer, she is considered a missing person.
KPD tells us there is absolutely no indication that the girls were kidnapped.
WATE 6 On Your Side also spoke to Duncan and Settle’s parents about the video. They said they were relieved their daughters are alive but are still concerned and that every day comes with a wave of emotions.
“All we can do is just pray,” said the Duncan family.
Duncan’s parents said they last time they spoke to her she called them crying and said she was going to rehab for problems with alcohol. She told them she was with a counselor. When they asked for contact information, the counselor said they would send the address to them to write to her. They found the conversation odd, so they drove to Knoxville from Virginia to try to figure out what was going on. They spoke to a bishop who said she told him he was going out west with a couple friends.
“A part of me feels relieved that at least as of that video, that Heather’s alive, but another part of me feels devastated because I just don’t feel I was looking at my daughter on that video and I also feel that her life is in more danger than ever before,” said Duncan’s mom
In the video the girls apologize to their parents for not explaining what they believe in.
“We have already lost our families, our homes, our possessions, and our lives. Our lives have been torn from us. We have been forced to leave the place that we all love and know, to try and seek refuge, to try and fight for what we believe in,” said Anna and Heather during the video.
The Duncans and the Settles have messages, they hope their daughters hear.
“We love you. We can get through anything. We’ve always gotten through everything as a family and we just want her back,” said the Settles.
“I will continue to fight for her until I’m no longer able to. You hear that Heather,” said the Duncans.