A 9-year-old girl whose disappearance Friday night from the Strawberry Mansion section of the city led to an hourslong dragnet by city police was found safe Saturday afternoon.
Zakiyah Seward was last seen playing in a park behind Ethel Allen School near 33rd and Lehigh Avenue around 8 p.m. Friday but never returned to her home, which is about a block away on the 2600 block of North Douglas Street.
Surveillance footage from a nearby corner store showed the little girl entering the store, along with two other children, then running out. Zakiyah was seen running a different way than her two friends in the video, which has a time stamp of 7:50 p.m., only a short time before her family called to report her missing.
Dozens of officers and cadets went door-to-door in the neighborhood and others searched a section of Fairmount Park a few blocks away.
Shortly after noon Saturday, a police source said she was found in a house unharmed. It remains unclear why she was at the house on Lehigh Avenue where she was found.
NBC10 was there Saturday during the emotional reunion between Zakiyah and her family. The girl's uncle embraced her while in tears. He also thanked the officers who helped find her.
"I ain't like the police until today," he said. "I thank them so much. My niece is home!"
Police say the girl went missing due to a miscommunication regarding a sleepover. They don't believe there was anything criminal or suspicious that occurred.