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Using social media, Puyallup police have missing teen ‘speak’ to public in hopes of solving her case

PUYALLUP, Wash. - The power of social media was put to the test Sunday by the Puyallup Police Department hoping to use an innovative approach to solve a missing teen’s case from 25 years ago.

Misty Copsey was 14 years old when she went to the Puyallup Fair in 1992 with her friend Trina. Copsey never returned home that night.

Sunday marked the 15th anniversary of her disappearance.

“There’s not a fair that comes and goes that we don’t think about Misty,” said Scott Engle, a captain with the Puyallup Police Dept.

The year, Puyallup police wanted everyone walking through the gates at the Puyallup Fair to also think about Misty through an innovative social media strategy allowing victims to speak to the public.

“Our hope is that as people read the twitter feed, the Facebook posts, people will read the story, follow the hashtag #MistyCopsey they’ll actually hear Misty speak to their heart,” said Engle.

Tweets like this hoping to tug at readers were posted on the Puyallup police twitter page. “When mom dropped us off that night she told me she loved me and I told her I loved her too.”

Through the years the Puyallup police department says they’ve gotten leads and tips but none have panned out to hold someone accountable.

Another tweet reads, “My mom needs your help. I need your help. If you have any information at all call Puyallup Police at 253-770-3343. #mistycopsey

Diana Smith, Misty’s mom said: "Time heals though, it’s been 25 years.”

Decades after her disappearance Misty’s mother hopes social media will help a new generation get to know her daughter.

“If she’s speaking, shows her pictures growing up, people can relate to that, she was a kid,” said Smith.

Smith, who has lived through every parent’s worst nightmare says she hopes the clicks will translate to closure.

“It would mean the world to mean, to have my child home, knowing she’s been who knows where, disrespectfully thrown somewhere, she needs to come home and be laid to rest and I need to be able to go be with her and talk to her,” said Smith.

Puyallup police hope the social media posts will be shared and perhaps spark someone to come forward who may be able to provide the clue to solving this mystery.