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California teacher accused of hiding missing teen for almost 2 years

Michael Ramirez, now 17, "inexplicably" returned home on March 11, police said. His aunt told a local TV station that he had run away after an argument with his parents.

A California teacher is accused of hiding a missing teenager who vanished more than two years ago and reappeared at his family's home in March, authorities said last week.

Holga Castillo Olivares, 61, was scheduled to appear in court Monday in the June 2020 disappearance of Michael Ramirez, 17, the Rancho Cordova Police Department said in a statement.

Olivares faces charges of detaining a minor with the intent to conceal from a parent and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, the department said.

Michael Ramirez.
Michael Ramirez.Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office via Facebook

Ramirez’s aunt and legal guardian, Katte Smith, told NBC affiliate KCRA that he ran away after an argument with his parents and never returned.

Ramirez was 15 at the time.

An extensive search launched after the teen's June 9 disappearance failed to find him, the department said. Nearly two years later, on March 11, he “inexplicably” returned home, the department said.

KCRA reported that he had been staying at the home of Olivares — the mother of a childhood girlfriend — the entire time. 

“You can’t just hide someone’s kid and think that’s OK,” Smith told the station.

The police department identified Olivares as an employee at the Alice Birney Public Waldorf school, in the Sacramento City Unified School District.

The school’s website lists her as a second-grade teacher.

A school district spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for a comment. In a statement to KCRA, the district said that Olivares has been placed on administrative leave while it investigates the allegations.

The statement described the alleged crimes as "unrelated" to Olivares’ assigned duties and said she was taken into custody after her students were dismissed for the day.

Jail records show that Olivares was released from jail Monday. Efforts to reach her were unsuccessful and it wasn’t immediately clear whether she has a lawyer to speak on her behalf.