By Associated Press - Thursday, August 20, 2020

PHOENIX (AP) - The stepfather of a 17-year-old Phoenix girl missing for nearly 20 years has been charged in her death.

Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel announced Thursday that 72-year-old Michael Turney was arrested in Mesa on suspicion of second-degree murder in the disappearance of Alissa Turney. Adel declined to say what evidence led to the arrest, only that he was indicted by a grand jury.

It was not immediately known if Michael Turney had an attorney to comment on his behalf.

Alissa Turney was last seen in May 2001 at her north Phoenix home after the last day of her junior year at Paradise Valley High School. She had told her boyfriend at school that her stepfather was picking her up for lunch. Michael Turney told authorities that she left a note saying she was running away to California.

Alissa Turney has never been found.

In 2008, investigators re-interviewed witnesses and ended up serving search warrants on Michael Turney’s home. That indirectly led to the discovery of more than two dozen unregistered pipe bombs belonging to Michael Turney. He later served 10 years for those crimes.

Alissa Turney’s sister, Sarah Turney, has tried to keep attention on the case through a website, podcasts and YouTube videos.

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