Police say missing NYC teen with special needs found in good condition, reunited with family



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NEW YORK — A 15-year-old special-needs student who disappeared from her New York City school was found unharmed Thursday morning and returned to her family, police said.

Nashaly Perez Rodriguez was found at a friend's house in Brooklyn after she slipped away from Public School 371 in the borough's Sunset Park section Monday.

Police took the teen to the 60th Precinct stationhouse in Coney Island, where she was reunited with her family.

"I'm just glad she's OK. I'm in shock," Nashaly's mother, Sandra Rodriguez, told the New York Post.

Rodriguez said at a news conference Wednesday that she didn't find out about her daughter's disappearance until an hour after it took place. Speaking in Spanish, Rodriguez said she had gone to pick her daughter up, only to be told that the teen was gone.

The family's attorney, David Perecman, said Nashaly suffers from issues including mood swings and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and should have had one-on-one supervision.

Perecman also represents the family of Avonte Oquendo, a 14-year-old autistic boy who disappeared from a Queens school in October. Avonte's body was found in January in the East River.

Asked about the girl's disappearance Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said, "It's just unacceptable that we don't watch out for every child, particularly our children with special needs."

De Blasio said those responsible would "feel some consequences."

Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina had earlier reassigned the principal of Nashaly's school pending the results of an investigation and said she was taking the incident "very, very seriously."

"It is imperative that the safety and well-being of each and every student, especially our most vulnerable students, is our ultimate priority in our work," she said in a statement.

Farina told reporters at a charter school visit in Queens that she didn't think the Avonte and Nashaly cases were similar.

"At this point, I don't even want to comment on that," she said. "I don't think these cases are similar, but, like I said, let me do my investigation before I say something that I have to retract later."

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