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Friday, July 15, 2011

GE teen missing since Saturday

GE teen missing since Saturday
BY EMILY CHARRIER-BOTTS

A Glen Ellen family is frantic for information about their daughter, 16-year-old Kasandra Rose Poshepny, who failed to return home after spending the night out on Friday, July 8.

The teenager was last seen with her boyfriend, Robbie Huffman, 19, when the pair slept over at his cousin's Healdsburg residence. When Kasandra didn't return home on Saturday, her father, Tony Poshepny, filed a missing persons report with the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office. Kasandra's mother, Noreen Hughes, lives in Rohnert Park but the teen lives with her father and step-mother in Glen Ellen. Huffman's family has not reported the 19-year-old as missing.

Kasandra's older sister Jess Poshepny, 26, said she was told the couple left very early on the morning of July 9. "I don't know if anyone even saw her that morning, that's just what the police told me," Jess Poshepny said.

Kasandra is 5 feet 3 inches tall with brown eyes and long brown hair that is naturally curly, but that she sometimes wears straight. Huffman drives a late 1980s Nissan pick-up truck painted a primer gray that can appear Army green, and has a dent in the driver's door. His tags were stolen shortly before the disappearance, so the truck may not have any license plates.

Ryan Patrick, a missing persons investigator with the Violent Crimes Investigation Unit of the Sonoma County Sheriffs Office, is working with the family on the case. Lt. Dennis O'Leary, with the Sonoma County Sheriffs Office, said law enforcement does not think that foul play is involved. "We believe she's voluntarily missing," he said. "The cousin up in Healdsburg said they have a good relationship and (Huffman) is not forcing her to do anything."

Jess Poshepny said the last time anyone in her family can confirm seeing Kasandra was on Friday, July 8, when the teen left early that morning to attend summer school at Sonoma Valley High School, where she will be a senior in the fall.

Jess Poshepny said she spoke to Kasandra's best friend, who also attends summer school at the high school, who reported that Kasandra seemed upset that day.

"She said while (Kasandra) was at school she looked like something was wrong, but (Kasandra) wouldn't tell her anything," Jess Poshepny said, adding that the friend offered an ominous message. "She said, 'I hope we bring (Kasandra) home alive.'"

Kasandra and Huffman's cellphones have both been off since Saturday and neither have responded to voice messages. Jess Poshepny said it is out of character for Kasandra not to check in.

"This has never happened with her before," she said. "I have been trying to reach her since last Monday and she always responds to me."

O'Leary said the Sheriff's Office is securing Kasandra's phone records to see if there has been any activity on the cellphone in the past week, and expected to have that information Thursday afternoon, after presstime. In the meantime, Jess Poshepny has launched a Facebook page called "Bring Kasandra Home Safely," where she is posting information and hoping to get tips on the couple's whereabouts.

"She's been gone for almost a week now and that's not normal," Jess Poshepny said. "We're all just in shock."

Jess Poshepny said she did not know much about Huffman, other than that the couple has been dating off and on for around a year. He is a native of Missouri, and O'Leary said he was a "drifter," with no permanent residence. O'Leary confirmed that Huffman was arrested in April in San Francisco, but did not yet know the nature of the crime. Erica Terry Derryck, a spokeswoman with the San Francisco District Attorney's Office, said that a Robert Ray Huffman was arrested on narcotics charges on April 20, but the I-T could not confirm that it is the same Huffman.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office at 565-2185. Jess Poshepny is also seeking information on her sister and can be reached at jess.poshepny@gmail.com or on the "Bring Kasandra Home Safely" Facebook page.

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