Virginia state police say a 12-year-old girl who was abducted at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport is believed to be in extreme danger. JinJing Ma was visiting the U.S. from China. She was last seen at the airport Thursday morning, but it took eight hours for police to issue an Amber Alert.
Police said Ma was with a tour group getting ready to depart for the West Coast after sightseeing in Washington and New York, reports CBS News correspondent Jan Crawford. Before going through security, police said the girl told her group she needed to use the restroom. Apparently it wasn't until the group started going through security that they noticed Ma was missing.
"Because of the age of the child, this is a very serious incident," Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority police chief David Huchler said.
Police said a surveillance photo shows Ma moments after she was abducted at about 8:15 a.m. on Thursday. Investigators said Ma is on the right and her alleged abductor on the left:
"She is believed to have left the airport with an unknown middle-aged Asian female," Huchler said, adding, "That Asian female is described as 5'2" to 5'5", weighing 130 pounds."
Huchler said the abductor helped Ma change clothes before the pair exited the airport's Terminal C through the arrivals level. That's when they got into a white Infiniti SUV with New York license plates before driving off.
"We do believe that there is a male subject driving the vehicle that the child left in," Huchler said.
Shortly before Ma disappeared, police said another surveillance photo shows Ma's abductor arriving at the airport with a male suspect. Huchler suggests Ma may have gone with her abductor willingly.
"The child appears to have left without any force. She entered the vehicle without any force, but that does not release any of our concerns," Huchler said.
Investigators said a witness told them he may have seen Ma's abductor meet up with her in New York City and handed her food. The FBI, Virginia state police, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children are also investigating. Police said they're working to contact Ma's guardians in China.
They urge anyone with information to contact MWAA Police at 703-417-2400 or Virginia State Police at 800-822-4453.