Police say an anonymous Internet tip claiming a 12-year-old missing girl had been stabbed and her body dumped was a hoax and that the girl has been found alive.
Salinas police said they only became aware of the hoax after receiving numerous phone calls and emails Tuesday from people around the country and reporters regarding a gruesome message posted on the chat site Omegle about the killing of a young girl.
"Who would want to do that for fun?" Salinas Police Cmdr. Henry Gomez said. "That's not something you want to joke with."
Police are not investigating the hoax, he added.
In the message, the Internet user included the coordinates of a location in Alameda County where the body of the 12-year-old could be found. It read: "I have a gift for you."
The user claimed the girl had been stabbed 17 times, and said "Enjoy."
Police scrambled to figure out whether the message was real and checked with law enforcement in Alameda County to determine whether a body had been found, Gomez said.
Finally, they were able to track down the girl, who they discovered was alive and living with her mother.
"There is nothing suspicious," Gomez said.