Mother searches tirelessly for daughter she believes is being sex-trafficked

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AURORA, Colo. - It's been one year since Lashaya Stine left home with nothing but her cell phone, and police and her family continue to search tirelessly for her, chasing tips and new leads.

Sabrina Jones believes her daughter was lured away from home and forced into sex trafficking.

"We've had lots of tips, so many. A lot of them suggest that she's being trafficked. There is no 100 percent hard evidence, but I'm leaning toward that as well," said Jones.

With every new tip coming in, Jones races out the door, hoping it will lead her to her daughter and hopes it helps police close the case. During this year, the constant rush and disappointment has taken a toll on Jones.

"It's caused me to go to the hospital a couple of times for panic attacks, blood pressure not going down," said Jones.

Yet Jones continues to press forward, never wanting to let any tip slip through the crack.

"There are times I didn't act in things and I hated myself for it. You didn't go, how do you know you wasn't going to see her then? How could you not go? 11:45 I felt so bad I didn't go. I was so tired and so much. It's overwhelming. You don't sleep well, you don't eat well, some days you can't even focus on anything," said Jones.

In the early morning of July 15, 2016, Lashaya left home with nothing but her cell phone. In August, police released a video Lashaya near a bus stop in the 1600 block of North Peoria Street at 2:23 a.m. on July 15, 2016. Since then, there have been hundreds of tips about her whereabouts, but they haven't been able to find her.

"You keep hearing all these things," said Jones. "[Tipsters say] she is being prostituted and the guy's name is this and the guy's name is that. We've heard that so much by so many different people that I believe that is probably the case."

While she continues to search, scammers torment her with claims they have her daughter and if she doesn't pay up, Lashaya will die.

"I cried for days, even though detectives told me it was a scam," said Jones. "What if they tell her, 'your mom doesn't care about you.' All kinds of things run through my mind. That they are going to tell her I don't love her because I didn't pay. And I beat myself up for days.

At their home, Jones keeps a pile of presents waiting for her now 17-year-old daughter.

"We have all her gifts and everything from Christmas and her birthday, everything. New clothes. New shoes. Because I said to myself, when she comes back, she's got to know we didn't forget about her on none of those days," said Jones.

While Jones regretted this anniversary, she hopes she's one day closer to reuniting with her daughter.

"I want her to know that we love her so much and she's not in any trouble, we don't blame her for this. We can move on," said Jones. "I just want her to know I love her so much and I miss her face."

Police ask anyone who has seen her or knows of her whereabouts to call 303-739-6130 or Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867.

Stine is 5-foot-6, weighs 150 pounds, has long black hair, brown eyes and a quarter-size round scar on her chest, police said.

There is a reward of up to $4,000 in the case.

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