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Father of slain girl ‘disgusted’ by Carlee Russell fabrication

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(NewsNation) — After Carlee Russell supposedly went missing, Elijah Blanchard joined the search to find her.

As someone whose own daughter went missing and was later found dead, Blanchard wanted to do what he could to help Russell’s family. Now, he feels sick to his stomach knowing it was all for nothing.

“It really just makes me feel disgusted, and I feel really disrespected,” Blanchard said Monday on “Dan Abrams Live.

Russell had claimed to police that she was abducted July 13 from the side of an Alabama interstate after calling 911 to report a wandering toddler. Police previously said they weren’t able to verify her claims.

Russell’s attorney confirmed Monday she was never abducted.

“My client apologizes for her actions to this community,” attorney Emory Anthony said in a statement delivered by the Hoover Police Department.

It’s been four years since Aniah Blanchard was abducted and killed, and the wound is still fresh for Elijah. It’s a wound, he says, that salt was just poured into.

“We went through this, and it’s something that no parent wants to go through, and for her to put the law enforcement, the first responders, through something similar like that, it’s very disturbing,” Blanchard said.

Police Chief Nick Derzis said authorities will meet with Anthony on Tuesday and also hope to speak with Russell to determine what happened during the 49 hours she was gone.

Police are in contact with the local prosecutor’s office to discuss the possibility of criminal charges, Derzis said.

Activists and advocates have expressed concerns that the case may have a negative impact on future media coverage of missing Black women.

“It’s frustrating being a member of the Black community and knowing that there are thousands of young girls and young women who go missing every day and they don’t get a fraction of the news coverage, they don’t get a fraction of the level of resources that was devoted to this case,” which now looks like a hoax, said Ameshia Cross, an activist and SiriusXM political commentator.

Blanchard echoed those sentiments.

“The evidence was real clear that it was a hoax or a scam, or she was just trying to raise some attention to herself,” he said.

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