The Los Angeles Police Department is seeking the public’s help in locating an 18-year-old Tujunga woman who was last seen Monday after school getting into a light-colored sedan driven by two men, authorities said Friday.
Verdugo Hills High School senior Lena Donabedian has not been seen or heard from since 2 p.m. Monday, when she was seen entering the four-door sedan driven by two Hispanic males at the school in the 10600 block of Plainview Avenue in Tujunga, police and family said.
Donabedian’s mother, Sosi, said she was very concerned for her daughter’s safety. She has never run away and is very close with her family, she said.
“She’s with us most of the time, weekends and after school,” she said. “She hardly goes out with friends.”
Donabedian recently met a guy “in secret” online via Instagram — whom she told friends was her new boyfriend — and the two would chat online at night, said family friend Michael DeWitte of Valley Village. Her friends recognized him from photos he posted online as the passenger in the vehicle of the car that she entered after school on Monday, DeWitte said.
“All of a sudden on Monday, he shows up as a passenger in this car,” DeWitte said. “She tells her friends, ‘I’ll be gone for a little bit and then I’ll be home,’ and that was the last we heard from her.”
While Donabedian got into the car voluntarily, DeWitte and her family fear she is being held against her will.
“We’re freaked out,” DeWitte said. “We’re assuming she’s alive and that she’s being held against her will and that she’s not able to reach out and talk to anybody.”
The teen did not have a cell phone with her when she got into the car, DeWitte said.
Donabedian, who was described by her mother as always happy and smiling, has brown hair and brown eyes. She is 5-foot-2 and weighs about 135 pounds, police said in a statement. She has a scar on her left hand on her knuckles, her mother said. She was last seen wearing khaki-colored pants.
Anyone with information on Donabedian’s whereabouts is asked to contact Detective Carlton of LAPD’s Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800.
During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-527-3247. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.