FLORENCE, Ky. - The focus of the search for missing teen Paige Johnson has turned toward the money raised during an event held last week.
Ryan Courtade with the Northern Kentucky Youth Foundation and Donna Johnson, mother of missing teen Paige Johnson, both spoke out on Wednesday.
On Oct. 15 friends and family gathered to raise money for the families involved and the search effort. When it came time to distribute the money raised, people began to disagree.
Donna received a portion of the funds. The money for the reward and search efforts were set aside, but the remaining $725 was set to go to family of the father of Paige's daughter.
According to Courtade, the father's family declined the money, asking it go toward the search effort and reward.
Donna, however, had something else in mind.
"Paige didn't have a college fund. I want Mackenzie to have a college fund. I want the rest of the money that's in the bank to go to Mackenzie's college fund. And the guy from the foundation said I completely understand and that's what will happen. So when we went down to get it the next day, it was gone," said Donna.
According to Courtade Donna "wanted it for her own personal uses. She said it was going to go towards the baby. But as far as I know we don't have any proof that that would have happened."
Wednesday both parties decided the money issues should be set aside and the focus on Paige should resume.
"If her reward isn't paid out, that's fine, we'll put it toward Mackenzie. We'll put it towards any other thing that has to do with Paige right now. But giving somebody $725 in my eyes towards a two-year-olds college fund, it doesn't seem like the most responsible thing as well as it doesn't seem like the people that attended the event on Friday night, that where they would want the money to go towards," Courtade said.
"My child is missing and I have more important things to deal with than all of this," Donna said.
Copyright (c) 2010 The E.W. Scripps Company
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