Florala-area girl still missing

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 10, 2016

Florala Police Chief Sonny Bedsole confirmed Wednesday that the teen missing from the Florala-Laurel Hill area still hasn’t be found.

Bedsole said that he discussed the case with Chief Assistant District Attorney Grace Jeter and by Jeter’s interpretation of the law that since Ashlyn Joy’s parents’ divorce decree went through the courts in Walton County, Fla., the mother would need to pursue charges, if there are any, through the state of Florida.

“She will still be listed as missing and endangered here,” Bedsole said. “The father admitted to us to assisting her leaving the custodial parent and until otherwise notified, we will continue to hold her as missing in NCIC.”

Joy’s mother, Stacy Paplauskas said Wednesday that after talking to authorities in Walton County, she was instructed to file new custody papers in Okaloosa County.

Paplauskas told the Star-News earlier this week that she and her daughter had a disagreement early last week after she found some inappropriate text messages and other information on her daughter’s phone.

She said that she disciplined her 16-year-old daughter by “whooping her butt,” grounding her and making her do extra chores, taking her phone away and forbidding her to contact her boyfriend.

Saturday, while Paplauskas was at work, Joy left.

She said her son called and told her that his sister was gone.

When he got home, Joy’s room “looked like a tornado” had struck it, and her bicycle was missing.

Eventually Paplauskas said she found her daughter’s bike at the Wetlands.

Paplauskas said she then called the police and shortly after received a text from her ex-husband saying he had their daughter.