Marsharie "Marsha" Lemons-Garrett, a 22-year-old Florida woman with special needs who has been missing for two weeks, has been found safe in the town of Malabar.
"We're glad she has been located," Palm Bay police spokeswoman Yvonne Martinez told The Huffington Post.
Robert Horner, a 73-year-old man who was walking his dog and cat, spotted Lemons-Garrett sitting in the middle of a Malabar road at about 10:00 p.m. Wednesday.
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"I walked up and there she was, covered with a white sheet over her head but I could see her eyes," Horner told Florida Today. "I asked her, 'Are you OK?' and I heard her whisper, 'I'm OK.'"
"I asked, 'Can I do anything for you?' and she didn't answer," Horner told the newspaper. "I didn't know what was really going on. Her eyes were sparkling from the street light. It was odd but I was kind of curious."
Horner called 911 and Brevard County Sheriff's Deputy Jim Harrison was dispatched to the scene. However, prior to Harrison's arrival, Lemons-Garrett got up and walked into a nearby wooded area.
"She was attempting to hide from the deputy," Martinez told HuffPost.
Harrison conducted a quick search of the woods and found Lemons-Garret near a wooded path.
According to police, Lemons-Garret was wearing pajamas and a T-shirt -- the same articles of clothing she was last seen wearing.
"She was dehydrated and covered with insect bites but she's otherwise in good condition," Martinez said. "She's not talking very much. She said she ate berries and drank creek water, which is rankish [sic] water. It's amazing that she did not get sick."
Lemons-Garrett had been missing since June 22. Her mother, Marsha Muhammad, had told police she last saw her daughter at their Palm Bay home. When family members noticed Lemons-Garrett was missing, they notified police. Officers later located Lemons-Garrett's socks and shoes at the edge of a nearby wooded area called Turkey Creek Sanctuary, but an exploration of the small nature reserve did not turn up any other sign of her. Multiple large-scale searches of the surrounding areas were also unsuccessful.
"She was apparently out [in the woods] the whole time," Martinez said today. "When someone does not want to be found they can hide pretty good in there. It's thick woods and there is a lot of acres."
After she was found, Lemons-Garrett was taken to Palm Bay Hospital for evaluation.
"She'll be turned over to mental health authorities [when she is released] because she’s got a condition she needs to be treated for," Martinez said.
Last week, Muhammad said her daughter had special needs, but did not elaborate.
Martinez said authorities are surprised Lemons-Garrett had fared so well for such a long period of time, presumably much of it in the woods.
"She's very lucky," she said. "We're glad we can close this case now."
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