UPDATE: 3 women arrested for kidnapping East Texas teenager

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The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office has arrested three people for the kidnapping of an East Texas teenager.

According to the SCSO, Melony Anderson was found safe and unharmed in Batesville, Mississippi, on Thursday, and three people were taken into custody. 

Elizabeth Sanford, 36, Laurel Smith, 22, and Shannon Leonard, 27, all of Center, were arrested by the Batesville Police Department on warrants out of Shelby County for kidnapping.

Investigators were able to ping a phone belonging to one of the subjects leading to their location. That information was passed on to the Texas Rangers who kept the BPD aware of their location.

SCSO officials are traveling to Mississippi to interview the suspects who will be taken before a magistrate in Mississippi to sign extradition. They will then be brought back to East Texas for arraignment on the kidnapping charges.

This case is still under investigation at this time.


An East Texas high school student who has been missing since earlier this week has been located.

In a brief notice sent Thursday night, the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office said Melony Anderson was found Thursday afternoon and “is safe.”

The notice contained no further details, but said more information will be released Friday.

Authorities say 15-year-old Melony Skye Anderson reportedly left Timpson High School around 3:30 p.m., Wednesday in a dark-colored early 2000 model Chevrolet Tahoe with a white male driver and a white female passenger.


Deputies need your help locating a missing high school student from East Texas.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office is searching for 15-year-old Melony Skye Anderson. 

Melony was last seen Wednesday afternoon at Timpson ISD and may be in the Logansport area. 

Melony stands 5’3″ tall and weighs 130 lbs. with blonde hair and brown eyes.   She was last seen wearing a gray shirt with pink palm trees the word Hollister printed in pink letters on the front, camouflage jacket, jeans and sandals. 

Anyone with information on Melony’s whereabouts is asked to contact SCSO Investigator Adam Renfro at 936.598.5601 or 936.572.1354.

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