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Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Earlier this year, we told you about the search for Raven Furlong, a missing seventeen-year-old from Aurora. Like Kara Nichols, nineteen, and Kelsie Jean Schelling, 21, two other women whose whereabouts remain unknown, she had a profile on a modeling-related website. Furlong's car was found in L.A. last month -- and now, police say they've made contact with her. But because she's turned eighteen, she doesn't have to return home, and declined to do so, even though her mother fears she's in danger. Photos, video and details below.

Here are the details Furlong shared about herself on the website Model Mayhem:

The Basics:

located in Denver/Aurora

will travel if expenses are considered

My hair is short and pink right now, but it changes a few times a year.

no tattoos or piercings except my earlobes and a star on my wrist, but I am interested in alternative modeling, and I have tattoos on the way (shoulder & rib piece).

My ethnicity is not "other". :) I am European (Irish, French, Swiss, German) and Native American.

I love to do make-up and art.

A missing poster featuring three photos of Raven Furlong.
A missing poster featuring three photos of Raven Furlong.

She added:

A bit more about me:

I'm pretty much a newb, but I believe I have great potential.

I'm looking to build my portfolio, and I want to explore many different types/styles of modeling.

Furlong's loved ones coordinated a search for her through the Help Find Raven Cassidy Furlong Facebook page , and this past month, her car was found in the Los Angeles area. In it were a number of items that concerned Furlong's mom, Tonja Mahaffey, including a pair of men's shoes:

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

But while area police continued their search, they noted a potential rub: At the time the car was found, Raven was about to turn eighteen. If she was found after that point and didn't want to return to Colorado with her parents, she'd be within her legal rights as an adult.

And that's precisely what happened.

Continue for more about Raven Furlong, including photos and video.

Raven Furlong in a police car.
Raven Furlong in a police car.

According to 7News, police made contact with Raven. But she told them she was in California of her own free will, and because she had turned eighteen at that point, the police let her go and have removed her from the missing persons list.

Tonja Mahaffey.
Tonja Mahaffey.

This decision frustrates Furlong's parents, who fear she was forced into the sex trade and is being held against her will, despite claims that staying in California is her choice. Here's a post on the subject from the Help Find Raven Cassidy Furlong Facebook page:

This is Raven's mother, Tonja. Myself and my husband traveled to Venice Beach in March to try to locate my daughter and bring her home before she turned 18. We found the car, but not her. We spent a week wasting our time with the LAPD. We spent numerous hours walking, searching and hoping we would find her. When we had to leave to return to work, My sister Tobi went to CA to take our place. She spent many days and countless hours searching for our beloved Raven. She walked hundreds of miles in search of Raven. Then when Raven was located and her location was relayed to my sister, it was also relayed to police because Raven's safety is a concern. Sadly the police beat Tobi to Raven's location. They took Raven to the police station to question her and be able to finally wash their hands of her.

Now that the police are "off" the case, they will no longer be a stumbling block for us.

AS HER MOTHER, I WOULD NOT SPEND THE TIME AND MONEY AND ENERGY THAT I HAVE OR THAT MY FAMILY HAS, IF I DID NOT BELIEVE THAT SHE WAS TRULY IN DANGER!

I am not doing this to be controlling, I never have been that kind of person. I am doing this to SAVE MY DAUGHTER'S LIFE!

If you cannot accept that or just choose not too, please keep your negativity to yourself. We are here for a succesfull and happy outcome, not a negative one.

Thank you,

The Mahaffey's

Look below to see a 7News report featuring comments from Furlong's mother. That's followed by our previous coverage.

Continue for our previous coverage, including more photos.

Pics, videos below.
Pics, videos below.

Original post, 6:05 a.m. February 27: In recent months, we've posted about two young women who've been reported missing: Kara Nichols, nineteen, and Kelsie Jean Schelling, 21. Now, the family of Raven Cassidy Furlong, seventeen, is desperately searching for her, too -- and it turns out she has a connection to Nichols and Schelling. All three had online profiles on modeling-related websites. See photos of the trio, videos and more below.

We'd previously reported about a Model Mayhem page featuring Nichols, who left her Colorado Springs home for a drive to Denver on October 9 and hasn't been seen since.

Kara Nichols.
Kara Nichols.

Here's her Model Mayhem mini-bio....

My name is Kara and I'm 19 years old. I've been modeling since February 2012, and although I'm new to it modeling is something I am very passionate about and I take my work seriously. Currently I'm working on building my portfolio so I'm always looking for modeling opportunities in my area. I've done mostly lingerie shoots so far but I'm extremely open minded and I'm willing to work with you on ideas for shoots so contact me if you're interested in working with me!

...and here's an addendum that suggests her knowledge of modeling's exploitative side:

NOTE TO PHOTOGRAPHERS -- due to my financial situation I am mainly focused on paid work. I am still open for TF shoots but paid work takes priority for now. Please contact me for serious requests only.

Schelling, for her part, lives in the Larimer Square area. She had traveled to Pueblo to visit a boyfriend, but she disappeared on February 4.

After our original post about the search for Schelling, news surfaced that she, too, had an online profile on a site devoted to acting or modeling -- this one called Explore Talent. Here's a look at the listing:

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

And Raven Furlong? She disappeared from her Aurora home on February 5 and is considered a runaway by police. But intriguingly, there's a Raven Cassidy Model Mayhem page as well. Here's her online bio:

The Basics:

located in Denver/Aurora

will travel if expenses are considered

My hair is short and pink right now, but it changes a few times a year.

no tattoos or piercings except my earlobes and a star on my wrist, but I am interested in alternative modeling, and I have tattoos on the way (shoulder & rib piece).

My ethnicity is not "other". :) I am European (Irish, French, Swiss, German) and Native American.

I love to do make-up and art.

She adds:

A bit more about me:

I'm prettymuch a newb, but I believe I have great potential.

I'm looking to build my portfolio, and I want to explore many different types/styles of modeling.

One aspect of the search for Raven can be found on the Help Find Raven Cassidy Furlong Facebook page , which features a slew of photos (many are shared below), as well as posters like the one on the next page.

Continue to see photos of Furlong, plus a 7News report. That's followed by photos and videos of Nichols and Schelling.

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

After establishing this link to online modeling sites, 7News reached out to Model Mayhem, which provided the following statement:

Model Mayhem strongly believes that safety should be top of mind when doing anything online. Because there are scams on the Internet, Model Mayhem tries to educate users about scams and how to avoid them. The site offers detailed safety advice to help members understand what to look for when they are contacted by others.... The site also has a feedback mechanism called 'Contact a Moderator' that allows any member to let site moderators know of any suspicious activity they encounter. Moderators view and respond to each and every inquiry.

The station notes that Model Mayhem has received an "F" grade from the Better Business Bureau.

If you have any information about Furlong's whereabouts, e-mail TIPS@nwcave.org.

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Continue for more photos and videos featuring Rachel Cassidy Furlong, Kara Nichols and Kelsie Jean Schelling.

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

The 7News report:

Continue for photos and information about Kara Nichols and Kelsie Jean Schelling.

Here are photos of Kara Nichols, plus a Fox21 report. If you have information about her whereabouts, contact Detective Cliff Porter at 719-390-5555 or findkaranichols@gmail.com.

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Continue for photos of Kelsie Jean Schelling.

Here are photos of Kelsie Jean Schelling, as well as a KKTV report. If you have information about her whereabouts, phone the Pueblo Police Department at 719-553-2502.

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

Raven Furlong, missing teen, found -- but she refuses to return home to her family

More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "David Calderon won't face charges (yet) in alleged kidnapping of Johnstown teen."


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