BRENTWOOD, Long Island (PIX11) — A high school senior from Minnesota, who went missing from her grandmother’s house 12 days ago, was discovered at a Brentwood, Long Island home more than 1,200 miles away — staying with a boyfriend she met online.
Amelia Krulikosky, 18, finally Facetimed her parents, just as Suffolk County police arrived at the house to do a wellness check that was requested by members of Facebook “missing” pages.
The mother and father of Amelia Krulikosky had spent nearly two weeks trying to track her movements, after a debit card transaction from Jan. 8 revealed she was at a Greyhound bus depot in Chicago.
“We just want to hear from you,” the teen’s father, Joe Krulikosky, implored emotionally on Monday during a ZooM interview with PIX11 News.
Because police considered 18-year-old Amelia an adult, Joe Krulikosky and his wife, Tia Hu-Yamni, started their own investigation. The couple immediately went to the Minneapolis bus terminal Jan 8. There, they learned their daughter was on a journey through eight states that would eventually take her to a transit center in Hempstead, Long Island.
“We jumped in my car,” Joe Krulikosky said. “We drove 18 hours to make it there, two hours before she got off the bus.”
But Amelia Krulikosky didn’t get off the bus in Hempstead on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 9. Her parents then drove to New York City’s Port Authority Bus Terminal, the main hub, and found out their daughter didn’t get on the shuttle bus there that would have taken her to Hempstead.
It turns out Amelia Krulikosky didn’t arrive in the New York area until Monday, Jan. 10.
Feeling deflated, the parents drove back to Minnesota and went into overdrive trying to find Amelia on their own.
The teen’s father went to AT&T and got a copy of his daughter’s phone records, which revealed she had been calling a phone with a Delaware area code repeatedly. The phone number was connected to a young man on Long Island with addresses in Brentwood.
Amelia’s mother remembered her daughter having secret conversations on the app Snapchat. The family didn’t know the man, and at the time Amelia was just 14 years old.
“I told her I wanted him blocked,” the mother said, “because he looked like an older gentleman.”
The mom said her daughter had become secretive with her phone calls in recent months and, the night before she left, she was washing a lot of her clothing.
The family said surveillance footage at the Minneapolis Greyhound terminal showed the teen boarding with four backpacks just before midnight on Jan. 7.
After Amelia disappeared, the parents enlisted the help of a large Facebook community of “missing” pages, including one in Chicago, Missing People of NYC and Long Island Missing People.
One of the New York page administrators had family in the Suffolk County Police Department, according to Amelia’s father, and a wellness check was requested. Late Tuesday going into Wednesday, the police arrived at the Brentwood address where the teen was staying.
Amelia’s father told PIX11 News early Wednesday morning that his daughter had been located.
“She left because she was in love with him,” Krulikosky said. “She didn’t want to come back; she said she was fine.”
The teen told her parents she was staying with the boyfriend, his mother and his stepfather, telling her relatives they had helped her buy clothing and other items she needed.
Joe Krulikowsky, who works for the Parks and Recreation Department in Minneapolis, said he’s trying to encourage his daughter to return home, hoping he can get some money together to “come and get her.”