Endangered Missing Advisory: Mother receives text asking for ransom for return of Ypsilanti teen

Shanija Christionna Payne, 14, last seen Thursday

Shanija Christionna Payne (WDIV)
Shanija Christionna Payne (WDIV)

YPSILANTI, Mich. – An Endangered Missing Advisory has been issued after a mother and grandmother received a text asking for ransom in exchange for the safe return of a 14-year-old girl last seen Thursday in Ypsilanti Township.

Authorities said Shanija Christionna Payne was last seen about 4:30 p.m. in the 1200 block of Lexington Parkway. After she failed to return home, the group text was received, authorities said.

Shanija is described as black with black hair and brown eyes. She is 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighs 240 pounds. She was last seen wearing a black jacket, a camouflage shirt, black pants and black shoes.

Anyone with information about Shanija's whereabouts is asked to call 911 or the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office at 734-994-2911.

What is an Endangered Missing Advisory (EMA)?

Here is an explanation from Michigan State Police: 

The EMA is used for cases involving missing persons that DO NOT meet the AMBER Alert criteria. The EMA can be utilized for endangered missing persons of all ages. The EMA is a notification sent via email to media in the affected geographic region(s) with information about an endangered missing person, in hopes the media will publicize the information in an effort to enlist the public's help in locating the missing person.

An EMA can be issued when:

  • The circumstances of the endangered missing person DO NOT meet the AMBER Alert criteria, but the person is missing under suspicious unexplained circumstances or the missing person is believed to be in danger because of age, health, mental or physical disability, environment, weather conditions, or in the company of a potentially dangerous person or some other factor that may expose the person to serious harm or injury.
  • Public information is available that could assist in the safe recovery of the missing person.

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