A Pennsylvania woman who was believed to be deceased after vanishing more than 11 years ago apparently will not face federal charges or prosecution at the state level after suddenly resurfacing alive in another state. The woman left behind two children and an estranged husband when she disappeared.
The woman suddenly disappeared in February 2002 after dropping her children off at school, shocking her husband and "everybody that knows her," her husband recalled. Detectives in Pennsylvania searched for signs of her whereabouts for years but little evidence was found. Her husband had her declared legally decesased in 2010.
Then, on April 26, the woman was discovered alive in Florida. She told police that she and her husband were going through a divorce and she had applied for housing assistance when she left. She hitchhiked south, where she eventually became homeless. A detective said the woman typically slept in a tent and under bridges and was apparently not aware that she had been declared deceased.
In the time since she left, her husband has remarried and her children have grown up and gone to college. Police are investigating, but so far no federal or state charges have been filed against the woman.
Even if the woman will not face criminal charges, she will likely have to face questions from her family. She reportedly expressed regrets to the detectives. She plans to move to Texas to be close to her parents.
Her former husband says that he and their children have moved on from losing her.
Source: WTXF-TV, "Missing Pa. Mom Found In Fla. Apologizes, Isn't Facing Charges," May 2, 2013