DOUGLAS, Ala. - Authorities with the Marshall County Sheriff's Office confirm all four missing children have been found.
Investigators say the four teens were last seen Monday morning waiting for the school bus on Moon Road. Deputies say their guardians thought the teens had gotten on the bus and went to school as usual but say their biological mother, Anna Marie Carroll, who does not have custody of the teens, picked them up from the bus stop and took off, heading out-of-state.
Monday afternoon Kentucky State Police stopped Carroll, who had her daughter in the car with her but not the three boys. Carroll lives in Michigan and had been allowed supervised visitation with the children over the Easter holiday weekend.
"We found out this morning that the three boys we had been looking for had actually been dropped off in Tennessee to another relative. They had made their way on to Michigan during the night," Sheriff Scott Walls said.
Investigators determined Carroll had given the boys to other relatives in Tennessee for them to be taken to Michigan in separate vehicles. That allowed investigators to find the boys in Michigan.
All four children; Michael Carroll, 17; Sebastian Hilburn ,16; Dennis Hilburn, 15; and Desiree Hilburn, 14, are headed back to Alabama with their proper custodians.
Carroll is being held in the Laurel County Correctional Center in Kentucky. She has a court date set for Wednesday morning to start the extradition process to Marshall County. She's facing four counts of Interfering with Custody.
Officials with the Marshall County Schools system say the four teens go to Douglas High School. "As soon as we were notified that the students were missing we were in immediate contact with the family," said superintendent Cindy Wigley.
There's an automated call system in place at the school as part of the safety plan to notify parents and guardians of absences. "That's how they knew the students were not at school," Wigley said of the teen's guardians.
System leaders say it's important for parents to have an updated phone number on record because they say this situation shows how vital it can be in keeping kids safe.
Wigley said throughout the search they were in constant contact with the people involved to get updates. "The students are well-liked by all of the students and staff. They've been a part of the school community for years and we're so proud to have them back."