Missing friend of slain teen returns home

Detectives do not believe cases are connected

INDIANAPOLIS - The missing friend of slain teen Dominique Allen returned home safely Wednesday evening, police said.

Karensha Phelps, 16, was reported as a runaway over the weekend, officials with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department said.

Police said Phelps made contact with her mother earlier Wednesday, but her mother said she suspected the text message didn't actually come from her daughter.

Indianapolis police confirmed Phelps was home safe with her mother around 9:30 p.m. later Wednesday, more than a week after running away.

Allen's burned body was discovered Sunday in the 1100 block of Elder Avenue. Police said she was likely abducted and killed by someone she didn't know.

Detectives said they do not believe the two cases are related, but the missing girl’s family was worried there was a connection.

Phelps’ mom, Crystal Collins, said Allen was her daughter’s childhood friend and they were together just days ago.

"I just know that the bond that they have will not keep my daughter away like this unless something has happened and nobody is saying. Or she knows something we just don't know," Collins said. "I am just scared that somebody took her, maybe she knows what happened and she's scared to say anything." 

Collins said her daughter was a repeat runaway, but she said this time felt different. Monday, she said her daughter had not made contact with anyone, even as police investigated the killing of her friend who she affectionately called her little sister.

"I want justice for Dominique. I loved her like she was my own. I just want my daughter to come home no matter what the circumstances, I want her to come home and know that I love you Karensha and that's it," Collins said Monday, before her daughter made contact.

Police said they do not believe Phelps was with Allen when she was abducted. Detectives said they were focused on finding whoever is responsible for Allen’s death.

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