A customer service ticket agent for American Airlines noticed something off when she saw two young teens approach her desk.
"It just didn't feel right," 47-year-old Denice Miracle told TODAY.
She grew extremely suspicious when the two girls, who are age 15 and 17, came up to her ticket counter at the Sacramento International Airport. Miracle recalled that there were no parents with them, no identification, and each had a first class ticket.
“They were young and by themselves. It’s unusual to get teens traveling that far by themselves," she said. "One of the girls was texting someone on the phone to get answers. They had small bags, and I initially thought they were running away from home.”
Over the course of their brief encounter, flags raised even higher for Miracle when the tickets were signaled as potential credit card fraud. Miracle told the teen girls that something was wrong with their tickets and she'd be right back.
Meanwhile, Miracle quickly contacted the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Airport Bureau. When the authorities arrived, they sat the girls down and inquired about their situation.
Come to find out, the girls met a man named "Drey," and he was flying them out to New York City for the weekend to earn $2,000 to model and to perform in music videos. The girls were also surprised to find out that the tickets were only one-way. The girls met "Drey" on Instagram. When authorities tried to contact him, he quickly deleted his account.
According to Sacramento County Sheriff's Sergeant, Scott Swisher, he believes that the phone number provided on Instagram was a Google phone number. He couldn't be tracked, unfortunately.
"We don't believe his real name was Drey," Sergeant Swisher said.
The girls arrived back home safely to their families. One of the mothers reached out to Miracle thanking her for stepping in and for doing what is right.
“That was my 15-year-old daughter. There are no words to express our gratitude to you. Thank you. Because of you, my daughter is home safe with her family where she is loved and belongs.”
With Miracle's quick thinking, she likely saved these two girls' lives. American Airlines GM, Aleka Turner, said in a statement:
“I’m proud of Denice and how she put her training into action to save these children. She is a testament to the critical role our frontline team members play each and every day in the operation and the lives of each person they come in contact with.”
“It’s just heartwarming. It makes me feel really good, and I’m glad they’re safe,” Miracle said.
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