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Missing woman found in New Mexico



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OREM -- A candle light vigil was scheduled Tuesday night for a missing Utah County woman last seen in late May, but it was canceled because the woman turned up alive and well in another state. So far, she's refusing to come home.

Sarah Jensen's parents say a New Mexico forest ranger pulled her over Tuesday morning. It was the first they'd heard anything about their daughter's whereabouts in nearly four weeks.

"It's not like her to completely isolate herself from family and friends when she's down," Sarah's father, Larry Jensen, told KSL earlier this month.

The family had been trying to find the 31-year-old after she went camping alone Memorial Day weekend in Zion National Park and never returned.

"Today we received a phone call from New Mexico law enforcement stating they had located Sarah in New Mexico," said Orem police Sgt. Craig Gaines.

Apparently, Sarah had been staying with friends: welcome relief, but still a surprise for parents. "There was a lot of emotional things going on in her life. We thought she was handling them well and, obviously, we misjudged that," her father said.

They say whatever problems she had faced in the past, she's never just left her 5-year-old son. "No, she's never done this before. That was the concerning part for us and everybody that knew her," Larry Jensen said.

Police say she hasn't committed any crime and won't be charged, but they also say it's a little strange. "Its an odd occurrence that somebody would just disappear and not make contact with family or at least tell them where they're going initially so that people wouldn't worry about them," Gaines said.

Sarah hasn't actually spoken to her parents, at least not yet. They say they were talking to Orem police while police were talking with a forest ranger, who was talking to Sarah -- you could call it a conversation by proxy. The Jensens also say that their daughter told the ranger she was not ready to come home.

E-mail: lprichard@ksl.com

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