Social Media

Missing Teenage Girl uses Hand Signals learnt from Tik Tok to call for Help

The 16-year-old used a hand signal which went viral during the covid lockdown era meant for helping women facing domestic abuse.

In what is being lauded as one of the finest forms of rescue, a 16-year-old girl was saved in Kentucky in the United stated of America 140 miles from her home. The girl had been reported missing from Ashville, North Carolina by her parents 48 hours before the rescue.

As per reports, the girl was found with 61 year old James Herbert Brick and she had travelled through North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio, where the girl and Brick stayed with Brick’s relatives. But they took off when his family realized the girl was underage and had been reported missing, Laurel County Sheriff’s Office spokesman, Deputy Gilbert Acciardo told.

With the situation she was in she couldn’t have shouted or waved very clearly, so the girl acting very smartly started making hand gestures to the people on road thinking that someone would be able to comprehend the same. As luck would have it someone behind their car noticed the girl flashing hand signs and interpreted them as a call for distress. The motorist soon alerted the police and followed the car until the police was able to block Brick’s vehicle.

On investigation, photos on accused’s phone showed an underage girl in a sexual manner. However, it was not disclosed that whether the images found were off the concerned girl or someone else. The accused has been charged with unlawful imprisonment and possession of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor.

The Signal was launched by the Canadian Women’s Foundation in response to COVID-19 mainly for the help of those undergoing domestic abuse locked inside their houses during Covid lockdown when isolation resulted in cases of violence at home.

The foundation wanted to formulate a signal which could have been easily shown during a video call without raising any suspicion to those present in the vicinity. The discreet gesture had three simple steps: Hold hand up with palm facing other person, Tuck thumb into palm and finally Fold fingers down over thumb.

Andrea Gunraj, Vice president of public engagement in the Canadian Women’s Foundation’s said “It is a relief to hear that somebody was able to use the signal in a very dangerous situation, and that somebody knew how to respond.” The signal has been promoted by the World Bank and Women’s Funding Network and has garnered millions of views on Tik Tok and YouTube since April of 2020. Social media thus has its own sweet deeds because as per Gilbert Acciardo the hand signal literally saved this girl’s life.

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