Missing North Las Vegas girl found safe in apartment

Police found missing 3-year-old Katies Battle late Saturday night.

Katies was taken from her father’s apartment complex during a scheduled visitation on July 5 by her biological mother, 35-year-old Shelley Mitchell.

Mitchell was arrested and booked into Las Vegas City Jail. She is facing a felony count of parental abduction.

Katies was in foster care, and her parents lost their parental rights, according to North Las Vegas police.

Just after 1 a.m., Las Vegas police officers notified North Las Vegas police detectives that Katies and Mitchell were located in an apartment at the Budget Suites located at 4885 Boulder Highway.

Katies did not need medical attention and appeared healthy and unharmed, police said. She was released to representatives at Child Protective Services.

North Las Vegas police met with news media Saturday afternoon to send a message to Mitchell.

North Las Vegas police spokeswoman Chrissy Coon said Mitchell can leaves Katies with staff at any area hospital, no questions asked, if fear of arrest is preventing Mitchell from turning the girl in.

Coon said police had been communicating with Mitchell consistently since Katies’ disappearance. Mitchell told police that she took Katies because she believed the girl was in an abusive situation in foster care.

Mitchell posted pictures on her Facebook page of a rash on a small child and said Katies got the rash while in foster care.

But the fact that she did not turn the girl over or file an official report documenting the allegations diminished her credibility, Coon said. To make matters worse, Mitchell stopped communicating with police on Saturday, and police could not confirm Katies has not been harmed.

Other recent pictures posted on social media of Katies have been confirmed to be weeks old, Coon said.

Contact Wesley Juhl at wjuhl@reviewjournal.com and 702-383-0381. Find him on Twitter:@WesJuhl.